“If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you. 8This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. 9“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one that this, that one lay down his life for his friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command. 15I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16You did not choose me, but I chose you to go and bear fruit; fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.”
John 15:7-16 (NIV)
The term “disciple” is used in the Gospels to describe the relationship between Christ and His followers. Jesus often used the term in describing the Twelve. The disciples in turn employed it when referring to one another.
A DISCIPLE IDENTIFIES WITH THE LEADER’S DISCIPLINE:
1. A disciple is a student. Luke 6:40
Definition: Any person who studies, investigates, or examines thoroughly.
2. A disciple is a steward. Galatians 5:22-23
Definition: A steward is a person who manages another’s property or financial affairs.
3. A disciple is a servant. Romans 1:1
Definition: A person employed in the service of another. The Greek word for disciple is doulos; one who gives himself up to another’s will.
A DISCIPLE FOLLOWS THE LEADER’S EXAMPLE:
5. A Discipler
THE CHALLENGE OF DISCIPLING NEW CHRISTIANS:
Facts About Membership Loss
23% – transfer out of town.
12% – death
26% – reversion
86% of those lost by reversion are those who joined the same year.
1. Assimilation – Understanding how to become a part of the family.
2. Coaching – On-going training and encouragement.
3. Discovery – Profiling the new disciple.
4. Placement – Finding a place in ministry.