Summary: The church is not to stop once we get a person in the door and on the church roll. Our work just begins at that point
• Talk about the goal of a baseball team. Get people across home plate. Don’t push the details of the analogy.
• Does a team cheer and quit when it gets a person to 1st base or 3rd base? They will cheer because they expect to bring that person around the bases to score.
• At the end of the game, the fans and the team is more concerned about the number of people who score than they are concerned about hits. I have seen games where a team my have only had one hit and beat a team with more hits.
• If a baseball team does not understand that part of its purpose is to score, then they will pat themselves on the back when they just get baserunners.
• In the church we can run into the same problem. We can get so excited about getting someone to 1st base that we forget that now the work is just beginning.
• If we do not understand the purpose of the church, then we will stop short of what God wants us to do.
• Over the last couple of weeks we have looked at two purposes of the church, worship and fellowship, this week we are going to look at discipleship.
• Matthew 28:19-20 states: "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
• We are commanded to make disciples. This is a two part process. This is the first part of making a disciple to evangelize and baptize them. We will not talk about evangelism this week. The second part is that we are to teach them to observe all that Jesus commanded.
• We are going to look is what we are to do once we have added a person to the kingdom of God. We are called to disciple them.
• What happens in a typical church when we win a person to Jesus? We usually leave it at that. We are happy, we got them to first base!
• When a person accepts Jesus as their Lord and Savior, our job does not stop there. That is like getting a person to 1st base and saying that our job is finished.
• Our goal is to help bring that person around the bases to score!
• Too many times we get a person to first base and then for get about them, we leave them stranded.
• Dallas Willard (A Christian Philosopher & writer) says that, “Discipleship is the great Omission of the Great Commission on the part of Churches.
• Part of making a disciple is teaching them all that Jesus commanded. The Great commission tells us this and the early church was committed to the apostles’ teachings. Acts 2:42 tells us, They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
• Today, let us look at the 3rd purpose of the Church, Discipleship.
• READ ACTS 2:41-47
I. THE DEFINITION AND CHARACTERISTICS OF A DISCIPLE.
A. What is a disciple?
• Quite simply a disciple is a learner, or a pupil of someone.
• In the context of the Bible, a Christian is supposed to be a disciple. Who are we to be a disciple of? Jesus!
• The word disciple is used over 250 times in the New Testament and is only found in the Gospels and Acts.