Thursday, August 11, 2005

Back to School
In a sense, I am going back to school so I decided to do some preparation homework. I have been thinking about the main purpose of the Discipleship Training School - fulfilling the Great Comission. As stated in Matthew 28:19, I should become better equipped to "go and make disciples of all nations, battizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." What does it really mean to become a disciple of Jesus Christ? A disciple of Christ, as defined in, is one who (1) believes His doctrine, (2) rests on His sacrafice, (3) imbibes His Spirit and (4) imitates his example. Here are a few Bible verses that stand behind that definition:
  • John 6:69 says "We believe and know you are the Holy one of God."
  • Hebrews 10:10 says "we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." Matthew 11:28 says "Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."
  • Ephesians 5:18 says "Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit."
  • 2 Corinthians 3:17-19 says "Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit."

As believers, we should always be involved in continuing education. We do this by reading God's Word daily, attending church services as well as joining a small group in order to better understand Biblical prinicples. When Christ ascended, He gave some gifts "to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming." (Ephesians 4:11-14)

When we first become Christians, I think that it is kind of like entering Kindergarden. Hopefully you have a great teacher, learn the basics, make some life long friendships and learn from your mistakes. Most of the time, Kindergarden is a lot of fun - you get to play, have nap time and the "work" is usually fairly easy. However, there might be factors that keep you from excelling or even liking school - difficult tasks, bullies, a bad teacher, etc. - but if you really focus and and work hard, you will move past that stage. As you move from grade to grade, the difficulty level only gets harder and the distractions become more prominent. In Christianity, the levels aren't as defined as they are in school, but there is always room to grow more like Christ and become stronger in your Christian walk. Once you excel past the stage of being a "baby" Christian, Satan will increasingly do all that he can to keep you from furthering the Kingdom of God. So, be on guard! Is it time for you to move up a grade? What is holding you back? Pray that God would reveal His next step for your life. Should you be leading or coaching a small group? 40 Days of Community is about to start at Seacoast and hosting a group would be a great way to "move to the next level". Please visit to register to be a 40 Days of Community host. If you are interested, but would like more information before signing up, please contact me.


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