Daily Devotional for Friday October 26, 2012
Discipleship is a Must for All Believers
(1 Timothy 1:2)
***ASK BILL: Pastor Bill, how best can a Believer best disciple a new Believer? What do you reckommend that a Christian do as far as coaching a new Believer?
ANSWER: If there is one thing the church lacks it is discipleship. It is critical, since once a person accepts Jesus, unless someone shows them the way, how will they know what to do? Discipleship is about a special relationship. The key to that relationship is accountability. For a new Believer, you need to spend time with them to help them understand they need to read the Bible and pray every day. They need to get into a good Bible teaching, Bible preaching church. They need to get into a good Bible study. We grow as fast as we are able based on the time and effort we put into our new relationship with the Lord. To disciple somone, you don't need to be a Bible scholar, there are many out there to answer the difficult quesitons. You DO need to be committed to this relationship and helping guide the new convert in their DAILY walk.
In my many years of ministry, perhaps the one aspect of our Christian experience that I see most neglected is discipleship. I can tell you right now, without being properly discipled by someone mature in the faith, you will not and cannot experience the type of spiritual growth you should. Even more important, without proper discipleship the odds of falling back into your old life and habits will almost always occur.
Having accepted Christ, an inward act by faith, the reality is that you are still sleeping in the same bed. You still go to the same job or school. You still do most of the things you did before that act of faith. To grow in your new faith, to not only be changed on the inside, but have that change be manifested in all aspects of your life, does not happen overnight..it is a process.
Without proper guidance and discipleship, how are you supposed to know what to do???
The church as a whole has failed miserably in this area. When you read of the early church, it was primarily a place of fellowship, teaching, and discipleship. Our church today has become a place of fellowship, teaching, and social/entertainment activities. There is nothing wrong with that when it is in perspective, but one of the church's key roles is to disciple new believers in the faith.
The reason discipleship is such a neglected part of our Christian experience is because it requires a commitment of time...both on the part of the person being discipled as well as the person who is helping the new believer. Now do you see the problem? We are all so busy.
Let me tell you, you can NEVER be too busy to spend time discipling someone new in the faith. For anyone who has made the commitment to Christ, you have to work at this Christian journey like anything else. It is not hocus pocus magic and everything is perfect. It is a journey, one day at a time. We always find the time to spend doing other things we enjoy in life. Let me tell you, you MUST make the time and work at your new relationship with Christ.
I love you deeply and care about your life. I want to issue this challenge today. If you are saved and have been walking with the Lord for several years, then you need to be involved in the life of a new believer. You need to be part of God's plan to help them grow in their new faith.
If you are a new believer, the challenge is to seek out a mature man or woman in your church and ask them to help you in your new walk. Ask them to be part of your life for the next year to help you understand what the Christian journey is all about. Our relationship with Christ is like anything else. How does someone learn about football, or butterflies, or gardening, unless someone who has been involved in that activity for a while and understands it, teaches them.
It is time we get serious about sharing our lives with others to help them along the way, so they in turn can help others down the road. That is in essence what the early church was about...passing the torch of their faith from one generation to the next.
I pray today that you will listen to this challenge. God is speaking directly to your heart today. Everyone should be in a discipling relationship of some kind. You should be helping young believers if you have been walking with God for some time, and if you are new to the faith, you should have a mature Christian in your life helping you down this new road. This is very serious, and my prayer is that you will take these words to heart today and not delay being part of this very critical and important part of your Christian experience.
DISCIPLESHIP IS A MUST FOR ALL BELIEVERS!!!!
In His love and service, Your friend and brother in Christ,