Shawn Bateman, Misionary to Argentina
24 January, 2018
What book did Jesus use to help make His disciples? What material did He use? Answer: He didn’t. Neither did Paul, yet both were incredible disciple makers. When looking at the question “How do we make disciples” I think one thing we can say emphatically is that discipleship is not just a series of lessons.
I am not against using material to study but I don’t think that this is all discipleship is. It is much more. Today I want to look at just one element of discipleship that I believe I can demonstrate from the lives of both Jesus and Paul.
They worked together with their disciples. Did Jesus teach his disciples? Absolutely. Look at the beginning of Matthew 5. As you read through the Gospels you see Jesus doing much more than just teaching His disciples; He spent time doing ministry with them.
As Jesus’ ministry grew in Capernaum the crowds became so large that He could not handle them by Himself. He started the disciples off with small tasks. They divided the multitude into 100’s and 50’s and made them sit, and then distributed the bread and fish to the multitudes. After they had been with Jesus for a sufficient time hearing his teachings and learning from Him, He sent them out to minister own their own (Matthew 10).
Paul, in the book of Philippians, tells the church there that he desired to send Timothy to them. His testimony of Timothy is that he is thinks like Paul; he has the same heart and desires that Paul has. Why? Was this concern for the church a natural concern that Timothy already had? I don’t think so. It is something he picked up from Paul.
Notice what Paul says in verse 22, “But ye know the proof of him, that, as a son with the father, he hath served with me in the gospel.” Timothy served with Paul in the Gospel. While working with Paul, Timothy saw Paul’s heart for the ministry, his burden for the churches, and his concern for the lost. Timothy, however, did more than see this in the life of Paul, he picked it up as well and it became a part of his life.
Bringing It Home:
Let us look for ways to involve our disciples in ministry, and use these times to teach and develop them.
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