Every church has a choice to make. Do you want to be a disciple making church or a non-disciple making church? The answer to that question may be easy, but the transition is not. Moving from a non-disciple making church to a disciple making church is the same thing as declaring war! The enemy does not want a church to be serious about making disciples, and he will turn all hell loose to try and shut down a church that is creating a movement of multiplying disciples. If you have any influence in the type of church you are in, do everything in your power to help it become a disciple making church. Declare war!
Becoming a disciple making church requires several very critical steps. Let’s take a look at each of the steps needed to become a disciple making church.
Step one: Define your target! The first thing you must understand is that you cannot make disciples if you do not know what a disciple looks like. You must know what the target looks like in order to hit it. Many churches are not making disciples simply because they have no idea what the target looks like. Jesus has defined the target of a disciple in Luke 6:40: “A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.” The goal of every church that has ever existed is clear- make “fully trained” disciples.
Step two: Determine your strategy! If your goal is to make “fully trained” disciples, you will need an intentional strategy. Disciples are not born: they are made. The best strategy for making disciples is the same strategy Jesus used. If your church is working the strategy Jesus used you will hit the right target. In John 20:21, Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent Me, I am sending you.” Jesus’ strategy ought to be the same strategy used in every church, in every nation, in every generation. Jesus took untrained, disconnected people and intentionally and strategically led them to become fully trained, and totally connected disciples.
Step three: Design your environments! A disciple making church drives the strategy of Jesus using the right environments. In the same way Jesus used a large group and a small group to make disciples, a disciple making church does the same. The small group actually becomes the primary environment for making disciples. The small group is what Jesus used, and the small groups is what we should use to make disciples. In Mark 3:14, the scripture says, “He appointed twelve- designating them apostles- that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach.” Jesus trained a handful of men to become “fully trained” disciples using an intentional strategy through the environment of a small group in order to change the world.
Step four: Develop your leaders! Once you have made disciples, the next step is to appoint them to be leaders. When you have a church full of “fully trained”disciples, you will have a surplus of potential leaders. If you are making “fully trained” disciples, you will never have a shortage of potential leaders again. In Matthew 28:19-20, Jesus commissioned His disciples to lead His movement of making more disciples. He said, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” With these words, Jesus launched a movement that would change the planet. He did it by sending out leaders.
At Impact Ministries we want to help churches transition from non-disciple making churches to full disciple making churches. Contact us at impactdisciples.com to learn more about how we can help you transition your church.