The Church Multiplies Together – Acts 9:1-3

Disciple-making doesn’t just happen because a church exists and people show up. It is a deliberate process. Considering the modifying participles of “going . . . baptizing . . . teaching” help us recognize this process. It must include evangelizing (going to new people and new places), establishing (baptizing new believers and teaching obedience), and equipping (teaching believers to also make disciples). How does your church evangelize, establish, and equip?

Disciple-making happens in the context of a local church. It’s a community project, not just a personal pursuit. And that community must be the local church, because Jesus has given her unique authority to preach the gospel, baptize believers into faith and church membership, and teach obedience to Jesus. Disciple-making doesn’t just happen in coffee shops and living rooms. It also happens in the sanctuary where the Word is sung, prayed, read, preached, and displayed through communion and baptism. Jesus didn’t have in mind maverick disciple-makers; he had in mind a community of believers who, together and under the authority of the local church, seek to transfer the faith to the next generation. Does your church view disciple-making within the context of the church, or only as a solo endeavor?

When Jesus said “make disciples” we cannot help but remember how he made disciples: three years of teaching twelve men on the dusty road. Disciple-making, then, is the Word of God shaping men and women within life-on-life relationships. It’s demonstrated in Paul’s relationship with the Thessalonian church: “being so affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us” (1 Thess 2:8). It is men and women regularly teaching one another to obey what Jesus commanded. This is gospel-driven, Word-saturated, intentional one-anothering.

Godwin Sathianathan

Heart Preparation
Read Acts 13:1-3. Notice in these verses how the church comes together in the process of multiplying itself because multiplication is a united activity of all the church. How are you participating in the process of multiplying mature believers and mature communities? How can the Spirit grow you in these areas?

Song of the Week
All to Us by Chris Tomlin


Posted on: August 6, 2015 - 10:00PM

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