Summary: Our church exists to make disciples of Jesus Christ.
Discipleship is Our Primary Purpose
The Bible is our ultimate authority.
The Gospel is our primary message.
1A. Discipleship is centered in a specific person: the Lord Jesus.
1B. Jesus said that all authority was given to Him. Philippians 2:9-11 NKJV (9) Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, (10) that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, (11) and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
2B. Salvation is in a person. Acts 16:31 NKJV So they said, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household."
2A. Discipleship is focused on a specific purpose: making disciples.
1B. Going is assumed.
2B. The command is to make disciples. μαθητεύω = to make a disciple, a learner under authority (discipline).
NOTE: We are not called to merely spread knowledge.
3B. We are to disciple all nations.
1C. This includes all people groups. έθνος = race and tribe, people group
2C. This includes all locations. Acts 1:8 NKJV But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."
μάρτυς = witness, in terms of legality and observance. The word from which we get “martyr”.
3A. Discipleship is filled with a specific content: the Gospel.
1B. Jesus came to seek and to save those who were lost. Luke 19:10
2B. Repentance and forgiveness are integral to the Gospel. See Luke 24:46-48.
1C. Christ suffered and died for sin.
2C. Man must turn to the Lord in repentance and faith.
3C. Forgiveness of sin and eternal life are the result.
3B. Receiving the Gospel results in becoming like Christ…over time. Romans 8:29 NKJV For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.
4A. Discipleship is entrusted to a specific agent: the local church.
1B. It is the visible manifestation of the Body of Christ.
2B. It is the organism designed for our growth. Eph. 4:11 - 16
1C. Through the gifted men provided to us.
2C. Through the encouragement received by the spiritual gifts of our fellow believers.
3C. Through our ministry to others in the local church.
4C. Through the accountability and discipline we find there.
5A. Discipleship is fulfilled with a specific goal: mature Christians.
1B. Jesus accomplished it by investing in a small group.
NOTE: Reach the reachable and teach the teachable.
2B. Paul accomplished it by mentoring individuals. 2 Timothy 2:2 NKJV And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.