Summary: It is not enough to be saved. We are not to sit on the sidelines but instead to "Get in the Game." That is where we are needed and there is where we are to be according to our Lord Jesus Christ.
CALL to WORSHIP
We are here in Your House once again to worship You and Your Name.
We ask to be blessed and anointed this morning.
Tell us O Lord, what we must do to complete Thy Work.
Hear Us as we ask for Your consideration on matters of importance to You.
Give us Peace and Joy as ONLY You can do.
LET THIS BE OUR CALL TO WORSHIP
Discipleship is never easy. It’s not something that you or I are born with. However, when you are born again, it is something you should plan on doing. Discipleship can be as simple as sharing your testimony with others. Some of us don’t even have a testimony but we should.
What were you like before you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior? Discipleship can be a real trip for someone, other than yourself, down “memory lane.” Just be careful not to get too colorful. If I told others half of what I did and who I was before being saved; well, it might turn them away; but yet, maybe it would draw them close to God once they understand the drastic change I went through.
Who knows your testimony better than you? The thing about a testimony is that it is yours and no one can dispute it. If you use your testimony, there is not, or should not be, a lot of memorization and preparation.
Now, I am not suggesting that you go out into the world without any other knowledge of God; other than your testimony. A class in discipleship and participation in your Church’s Bible studies is always a great idea.
Peter wrote that we are to be able to answer any questions (1 Peter 3:15) and that is certainly important. There are many lost souls out there. The harvest is great, but only if we decide that we want to participate in the harvest itself.
Don’t be like a third-string quarterback who always sits on the sidelines while he watches the game from the bench. Get in there and score one for Jesus—Pastor R. L. Timblin, Sr. 2017
Disciples do build the church of God’s glory. They do operate in the gifts of the Spirit to world. They do defend the faith against the lies of the devil. They do go and make disciples, who also make disciples, and who also make disciples, etc. until the end of the age. Disciples are to know these things and if they do, they will be blessed (JN 13:17).
Disciples are to be DOERS not hearers (JAS 1:22-25). We will now discuss three of the things that Disciples should do:
1) Build up the Church, 2) Operate in the Gifts of the Spirit and 3) Make Disciples.
#1 BUILD UP THE CHURCH
Jesus had two missions while on earth. One was to redeem and the other to build a living organism called the Church. The Greek word for church is ‘ekklesia’, which means ‘Called out’ or ‘One who gathers together.’ It is a word that is most appropriate to our Lord Jesus, for it means to ‘Call out’ which Jesus did often.
We all have different gifts given to us by the Holy Spirit Himself (EPH 4:11-12). As disciples, we are to do MORE than just believing in Him. We each have our own ministry. We each need to edify. We each need to build up the church. That could mean edifying those that are already in our churches but it could also mean to physical build up the members in our churches by adding more disciples.
Remember: It is a living, breathing organization. If it is properly cared for; given the proper amount of water and allowed to bask in the light of our Savior; it indeed will grow and prosper.
While we are on the subject of growth, let me give you some numbers. Church membership is on the decline. In the 1950’s, 75% of our country felt that God was real and the need to be in church. Now it is less than 55%. 20% of our Nation says that there is NO NEED for religion at all.
Recent headlines indicate that Christianity is declining sharply in the U.S.; the ‘NONES’, those with no religion, are on the rise. There is a substantial drop in those who call themselves Christians and many know nothing about Christ.
#2 OPERATE IN THE GIFTS OF THE SPIRIT
Disciples are to operate within the gifts of the Holy Spirit but must first know that the Holy Spirit dwells within him or her. Obviously, a disciple must know who the Holy Spirit is and what He has to offer.
Shall we start with ‘Who is the Holy Spirit?’ Besides being one of three in the ‘Triune’, He is also the Executor of the Will of God (GEN 1:31). He is the Comforter (JN 14:16), the Revealer of God and Son (JN 16:13-15 and 1 COR 2:9-12). He is also the Distributor of God’s Gifts (1 COR 12). Paul lists nine of those gifts: Wisdom, Knowledge, Distinguishing Spirits, Faith, Healing, Miracles, Prophesy and Tongues.