What is your goal in life? For those of us who are following Jesus, the answer should be pretty much the same. We should have in our answer the concept of helping others to become followers of Jesus Christ. Jesus told us that this is to be every believers focus when He said, "Go and make disciples of all the nations..." (Matthew 28:19). For some, the concept of making disciples is too hard, too complex or requires more knowledge than they have. If you have those sort of thoughts, I hope that this short post will help to change your mind. Making disciples should be a priority and it should be simple (but never easy).
Throughout the New Testament, we find the writers reminding their readers of the same principles and truths over and over and over again. Here are some examples:
"For this reason I have sent to you Timothy, who is my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, and he will remind you of my ways which are in Christ, just as I teach everywhere in every church..." 1 Cor. 4:17
"Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you." Philippians 3:1
"For this reason I remind you to kindle afresh the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands." 2 Timothy 1:6
"Remind them of these things, and solemnly charge them in the presence of God not to wrangle about words, which is useless and leads to the ruin of the hearers." 2 Timothy 2:14
"Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed..." Titus 3:1
"I consider it right, as long as I am in this earthly dwelling, to stir you up by way of reminder..." 2 Peter 3:1
"Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe." Jude 1:5
Jude, Peter, Paul and Timothy all taught by reminding their audience of the simple principles and truths to be followed as they go about making disciples throughout their lives. Here then are some basic simple principles that if each believer would implement with their whole heart, the church and the world would certainly be a different place:
1. Spend time with Jesus each and every day. This can be accomplished both by being in the Word of God and by communing with the Trinity throughout the day in prayer, conversation, listening and worshipping both externally and internally. This first and greatest principle is what Jesus taught us in Mark 12:30. we are to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. Each believer is responsible for being intimate with Divine Truth.
2. Serve the world by treating others as more important than yourself (Philippians 2:3-4). The second greatest commandment is like the first, we are to love our neighbor as ourselves. We are to employ our love and the gifts God gives us to serve each other, to encourage one another and to urge one another to move forward in our faith. Each believer should be searching for ways to love those God has placed in our lives. We should be Nurturing Relationships throughout our lives.
3. Spread the love and truth of God to anyone who will listen...and even to those who won't (Mark 4:1-20). As Jesus began his journey to heaven in Acts 1, he told his followers that they would receive the Holy Spirit and power for the purpose of telling the world about all that God has done for them. God uses his followers to give opportunity for anyone to join in following Him. This is the great love that our great God has for people. God has strategically placed and sent each of His followers around the world and throughout time to share the good news of Jesus. We are all to be on a Apostolic Mission.
So there you have a short and sweet (simple) reminder of the basics of our faith. What would happen if your church lived out these things with gusto? What would happen if you would?