Practical Discipleship - Why Do We Disciple Others?

By Jason Weimer, Western Pennsylvania Catalytic Team

Let’s start by reviewing why discipleship is so important. First, of all the crowds of people that surrounded Jesus almost constantly, He chose to devote much of His time and teaching to 12 rather common, ordinary men. Why? Wouldn’t it have been easier for Him to spend all His time preaching to the masses, winning many souls to Himself, and building up a huge number of followers? He could have easily reached tens of thousands and established a church with a broad base and large number of people. But what would have happened after His death, resurrection, and ascension into Heaven?

The large number of new believers would be without trained leaders to carry on Jesus’ teachings and no one would grow in their new faith - they would be like a boat without a rudder. Instead, Jesus chose to focus on 12 prayerfully chosen men who He staked His whole ministry on. He specifically and intentionally chose them, lived with them, taught them, and instilled His plans and purposes into them.

And now, starting with these men under the power of the Holy Spirit, the church has expanded literally around the world, with hundreds of millions of believers. The principle Jesus set called spiritual multiplication, and the apostle Paul described it best in 2 Timothy 2:2: “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others.”

In spiritual multiplication, the aim is to invest in a few people, equipping each of them to invest in another few people, and so on. If you pour into 3 people, then they each pour into 3 more, you end up in 12 people devoted and matured (your 3 + their 9). Then if those 9 disciples each pour into 3 more, and so on, very quickly there can be a huge number of people discipled. Jesus strategically ministered in this way, and we can too.

Why do we disciple others? Simple- because it is the practice Jesus set, and it is the most efficient way to reach the world. By pouring into a few, developing them in the character and actions of Jesus, and equipping them to develop others, we can be used by God to make a great impact in reaching the world for Christ.

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