Unlock Biblical Principles for Multiplying Disciples

As Christians, our desire is to follow Christ’s command to go and make disciples of all nations. However, in our efforts to disciple others, it is sometimes easy to lose sight of the biblical principles that underlie disciple-making. In this article, we will explore these principles and how they can help us to effectively multiply disciples.

Key Takeaways
Disciple multiplication is critical for church growth and health.
The Great Commission is a divine mandate for all believers to make disciples of all nations.
The early church exemplified effective disciple multiplication through community and commitment.
Disciple multiplication creates a culture of obedience and transforms lives and communities.
Jesus' model of discipleship involves investing deeply in obedient individuals and training them.
The Holy Spirit provides the power and wisdom for effective disciple-making.
Prayer, fasting, and the Word of God are critical components for disciple-making.

Understanding the Importance of Multiplying Disciples

Disciple multiplication is critical to the growth and health of the church. When we make disciples who make disciples, we create a ripple effect that can transform communities and nations. This is why Christ’s command to make disciples is so important. It is not just a suggestion but a divine mandate that we must take seriously.

The Great Commission and Its Significance

The Great Commission is Christ’s final commandment to his disciples before ascending into heaven. 

In it, he charges them to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. 

This commandment is significant because it not only points to the importance of disciple-making but also to the divine authority behind it.

As we look at the Great Commission, we see that Christ’s commandment was not just for his disciples at the time but for all believers throughout history. This means that we are all called to be disciple-makers, regardless of our age, gender, or social status. 

We are all called to participate in the Great Commission and to make disciples who make disciples.

As we look at the Great Commission, we see that Christ's commandment was not just for his disciples at the time but for all believers throughout history.

The Early Church’s Example of Multiplication

The early church provides an excellent example of discipleship multiplication. 

In the book of Acts, we see how the early believers went out and made disciples, resulting in the explosive growth of the church. They understood that disciple-making was not just about adding numbers to the church but about carrying the good news to every people and every place through local ownership in local churches.

The early church was characterized by a deep sense of community and a commitment to the teachings of Christ. 

They met regularly for worship, prayer, and fellowship, and they shared their possessions with one another. This sense of community was essential to their ability to make disciples who made disciples. 

They were able to model the teachings of Christ and to pass on their faith to others through their relationships with one another.

They understood that disciple-making was not just about adding numbers to the church but about carrying the good news to every people and every place through local ownership in local churches.

The Impact of Disciple Multiplication on the Modern Church

Today, disciple multiplication continues to be essential to the health and growth of the church. 

As we make disciples who make disciples, we create a culture of obedience to God’s word and faithfulness to His Great Commission. We even begin to see lives changed, families restored, and communities transformed.

See also  5 Surprising Ways to Attract Multiplying Leaders

Disciple multiplication is not mainly about adding numbers to the church. 

It is about creating a movement of believers who are committed to following Christ and making disciples. When we make disciples who make disciples, we are participating in God’s plan for every tribe, tongue, and nation to hear the gospel (See Matthew 24:14). 

We are creating a ripple effect that can reach far beyond our local communities and impact nations and generations to come.

As we consider the importance of disciple multiplication, we must also recognize that it is not always easy. It requires commitment, sacrifice, and a willingness to step outside of our comfort zones. 

It requires us to be intentional about our relationships with lost friends and to be willing to invest in those who repent and believe. 

But the rewards are immeasurable. 

When we make disciples who make disciples, we are participating in God’s work of transforming the world and bringing his kingdom to earth.

The early church provides an excellent example of discipleship multiplication. In the book of Acts, we see how the early believers went out and made disciples, resulting in the explosive growth of the church.

One of the key aspects of Jesus' model of discipleship was his emphasis on pouring deeply into the few that obeyed no matter what the cost.

Biblical Principles for Effective Discipleship

Effective disciple-making requires more than just good intentions. 

It requires us to follow the model of Christ and to adhere to biblical principles that can help us to make an impact. In this section, we will explore some of the key principles that can help us to become effective disciple-makers.

Jesus’ Model of Discipleship

Jesus provides the ultimate model for disciple-making. 

In his ministry, he invested in a few key obedient individuals, equipping them to carry on his work after he was gone. He spent time with them, taught them, and challenged them to grow in their faith. 

As we follow his example, we can make an impact in the lives of others.

One of the key aspects of Jesus’ model of discipleship was his emphasis on pouring deeply into the few that obeyed no matter what the cost. 

He invested in the lives of these obedient disciples, getting to know them personally and caring for them deeply. He also modeled a life of taking action on the Word, showing his disciples how to love and serve others with humility, compassion, and radical obedience.

Another important aspect of Jesus’ model of discipleship was his focus on training and equipping his disciples. He modeled and assisted them in the principles of the kingdom of God and showed them how to apply these principles in their lives. 

He regularly challenged them to step out in faith and put their learning into practice.

The Role of the Holy Spirit in Disciple-Making

The Holy Spirit is the key to effective disciple-making. He provides the power and wisdom we need to make an impact. 

He opens doors for us, guides us, and empowers us to accomplish his purposes. By relying on the Holy Spirit, we can see lives transformed and communities impacted.

One of the ways in which the Holy Spirit works in disciple-making is by bringing conviction to the hearts of those we are discipling. 

He helps them to see their need for God and to turn away from sin. 

He also helps them to grow in their understanding of God’s truth and to apply it in their lives.

See also  How to Share the Gospel with Friends and Family Members

Another way in which the Holy Spirit works in disciple-making is by empowering us to share the gospel with others. He gives us the words to say and the courage to speak out boldly. He also helps us to demonstrate the love and power of God through our actions.

The Importance of Prayer and Fasting in Discipleship

Prayer and fasting are critical components of effective disciple-making. 

They help us to stay focused on God, seek his will, and tap into his power. As we make prayer and fasting a priority, we can see breakthroughs in the lives of those we disciple and in our own lives as well.

One of the benefits of prayer and fasting is that they help us to develop a deeper intimacy with God. As we spend time in prayer and fasting, we draw closer to him and become more sensitive to his leading. 

We also learn to rely on him more fully and to trust in his provision.

Another benefit of prayer and fasting is that they help us to overcome spiritual strongholds. Through prayer and fasting, we can break free from the power of sin and the influence of the enemy. 

We can also pray for the salvation and deliverance of those we are discipling, believing that God will answer our prayers.

The Power of God’s Word in Transforming Lives

The Word of God is the ultimate tool for disciple-making. 

It provides the foundation for our faith and the power to transform lives. As we study and apply God’s word, we can see the power of his truth at work in our lives and the lives of those we disciple.

One of the ways in which the Word of God transforms lives is by bringing conviction to the hearts of those who hear it. 

As we share God’s word with others, it has the power to pierce their hearts and bring them to repentance. It also helps them to grow in their understanding of God’s character and his plan for their lives.

Another way in which the Word of God transforms lives is by providing guidance and direction. 

As we study God’s word, we learn how to respond with radical and quick obedience. We learn to live in a way that pleases him and brings glory to his name. We also learn how to navigate the challenges and trials of life, relying on God’s wisdom and strength.

The bottom line is this: effective disciple-making requires us to follow the model of Christ and to adhere to biblical principles that can help us to make an impact. 

By investing in relationships, relying on the Holy Spirit, making prayer and fasting a priority, and studying and applying God’s word, we can become effective disciple-makers who see lives transformed and communities impacted.

By investing in relationships, relying on the Holy Spirit, making prayer and fasting a priority, and studying and applying God's word, we can become effective disciple-makers who see lives transformed and communities impacted.

The bottom line is this: effective disciple-making requires us to follow the model of Christ and to adhere to biblical principles that can help us to make an impact.

Practical Steps for Multiplying Disciples

While biblical principles are essential to effective disciple-making, we also need practical steps to help us put these principles into action.

Identifying and Investing in Potential Leaders

One of the keys to multiplying disciples is to identify and invest in potential leaders. The leader Jesus modeled investing in was teachable, obedient in action with that knowledge, and willing to share it with others.

We can come alongside these leaders to model and assist them in basic discipleship.

See also  7 Surprising Disciple-Making Movement Examples

Equipping Believers for Ministry and Service

To effectively multiply disciples, we must equip believers for obedience in the basic commands of Christ. This means providing training and coaching. Often this looks like an initial season of high directive coaching (around 3 months) followed by a much longer season of support, encouragement, and feedback (up to 3 years).

Encouraging Accountability and Spiritual Growth

Accountability and spiritual growth are essential to effective disciple-making. The Three Thirds disciple making format, found here on the multiplyingdisciples.us website, is a key way to build this into our disciple-making. We can encourage accountability by faithfully practicing accountability through this format or something similar.

Empowering Disciples to Share Their Faith

Finally, to effectively multiply disciples, we must empower disciples to share their faith. This means teaching them how to share their faith effectively using tools like the Three Circles, providing opportunities for them to do so, and encouraging them to step out in boldness.

Overcoming Challenges in Disciple Multiplication

While disciple multiplication is essential to the growth of the church, it can also be challenging. However, by understanding the common obstacles and developing a vision for disciple multiplication, we can overcome these challenges.

Addressing Common Obstacles in Discipleship

Common obstacles in disciple-making include lack of commitment, lack of confidence in how to make disciples, and lack of competence in what to do. 

By addressing these issues and providing training and hands on practice with a lot of “reps,” we can help disciples to overcome these obstacles. 

Practicing with reps in clear hands on training transfers the confidence, competence, and commitment into a disciple’s life.

Cultivating a Culture of Disciple-Making in the Church

To effectively multiply disciples, we must cultivate a culture of action oriented disciple-making in the church. 

This means promoting a mindset that values obedience based disciple-making, providing opportunities for training and equipping, and identifying action-oriented “champions” who will live out the lifestyle we can focus our time and energy on.

Developing a Long-Term Vision for Disciple Multiplication

Finally, to effectively multiply disciples, we need to develop a long-term vision with Biblical expectations.

Jesus shared with thousands, trained hundreds, and poured deeply into a few. We can expect our results to similarly involved finding and pouring deeply into a few. 

This means looking beyond the immediate results and investing in a long-term plan for disciple-making with the obedient few. By doing so, we can create a ripple effect that will transform lives and communities for generations to come.

Conclusion

Multiplying disciples is critical to the growth and health of the church. 

By understanding the biblical principles behind disciple-making, we can make an impact. By following the example of Christ, relying on the Holy Spirit, and applying practical steps, we can effectively multiply disciples. 

And by overcoming common obstacles and developing a long-term vision, we can create a culture of transformation and impact that will continue for generations to come.

Jesus shared with thousands, trained hundreds, and poured deeply into a few. We can expect our results to similarly involved finding and pouring deeply into a few.

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