Discipleship

Step 3: Improving Disciple-Making - Part 1

This means giving attention to what we should be doing more effectively - as well as helping others. It may involve better devotional times, better prayer life, better time use, improvement in setting daily priorities, more effective witnessing, and character development. We can make a great beginning but not be a strong finisher. The Lord was a strong finisher. He exemplified (John 17:4). The apostle Paul also was one who said, "I have finished my course"(II Tim 4:7) We must te...

Step 2: Disciple-Making

This is the process of moving a convert from initial follow-up to being a mature follower of the Lord Jesus. "Disciples are made, not born" (Matt. 28:19). Disciples are made by other disciples. It is the Lord's command: "Go you into all the world and make disciples" (Matt 28:19). It is called "The Great Commission," and it goes beyond sending missionaries to foreign fields. It is for all believers wherever they are and for all churches to follow its directives. It involves the assis...

Step 1: Follow-Up

This expression is not common to other languages. It refers to the process of helping newborn babes in Christ (I Thess 2: 7-12, I Peter 2:2, I Corinthians 3:1). It may also be needed with those who after their profession of faith in Christ did not receive this help. Doctors who help infants after birth are called pediatricians (baby doctors). Follow-up is "spiritual pediatrics." New babies, physical or spiritual, have several common needs; both need simple initial foods, like milk. Paul ...

Introduction to Thirteen Steps in Building Disciples

There are a number of steppingstones between a believer's conversion and a mature, fruitful life. We enumerate here 13 steps, with explanatory notes and suggestions on the road to being what Jesus called, a "true disciple." Believers are called to be disciples. How can this be accomplished? There are 13 things that should be laid before each believer who aspires to be a true disciple. Those who assist them should touch on each point. Here is an outline of each of these points. 1...

Discipleship in an evil day

Discipleship in an evil day. "Follow thou me." John 21: 22. C. H. Mackintosh. Preface. The following Tract is a reprint of a paper which appeared in a recent number of "The Present Testimony," containing the substance of a Lecture on the first three chapters of the Book of Daniel. It is published in this form, at the request of a number of Christian friends and with earnest desire that the Holy Spirit may be pleased to use it for the purpose of leading many hearts to seek a closer walk wi...

The Visit of the Queen of Sheba (1 Kings 10)

“The Visit of the Queen of Sheba

1 Kings 10:1-13

 

This is not only a great Gospel picture of how some find the Lord, it is also an example of how the Lord has raised up His people and “blessed them with all spiritual blessings” (Eph.1:3) as pictured by Solomon’s gracious treatment of his people. “Behold, a greater than Solomon is here.” (Matt. 12:42)

 

1.   Her Investigation (vv. 1-2)

The Queen of Sheba traveled a great distance and spent a great fortune to investigate the claims of others who had been talking about this great King concerning his God. Someone had been talking about Solomon! We should be talking about the Lord in the same way to raise interest in others about our God. (1 Peter 3.15, Psalm 45:1)   Like the Queen of Sheba, many unsaved have weighty matters of the heart to pour out to the Lord.

 

From Legalism to Liberty (Philippians 3)

“From Legalism to Liberty: The Affirmations of the Apostle Paul”

Phil. 3:1-21

 

Given to encourage the Philippian believers in the faith and to avoid the doctrine and attitudes of false teachers.

 

1. The Apostle’s Admonition (vv. 1-3)

To rejoice in the Lord—the theme of this epistle-repeated again in 4.4

It was not a tedious thing but safe for him to remind them of the need to avoid, false teachers who had mixed legalism with grace calling them “dogs”, “evil workers” and their work of circumcision as “mutilation” God’s strong attitude against those that oppose His grace. The true Christian worships God in the Spirit, rejoices in Christ, and does not trust in the flesh.

 

2. The Apostle’s Achievements (vv. 4-6)

If legality were the way to heaven, his credentials would easily exceed those who advocated this approach to salvation. Seven achievements are listed: four natural, three attained. Circumcised on 8th day as was Isaac (in contrast to Ishmael in the 13th year - Gen. 17.25) of the favored nation of Israel, of the faithful tribe of Benjamin, born of parents who were both Hebrew, of his own volition – a Pharisee, a persecutor, and perfect as concerning the law.

 

The Day of Christ and the Day of the Lord

A number of references are made in the NT to the Day of Christ or the Day of the Lord Jesus. The Apostle Paul, seeking to encourage the Philippian Christians, stated in Phil. 1:6: “Being confident of this very thing that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” He would go on to exhort them to “approve the things that are excellent that ye might be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ.” (v. 10). Later in this same epistle, Paul stated that he hoped they would hold forth the Word of life so that he might rejoice in the day of Christ, so that he would not have run in vain neither labored in vain. (2:16) Likewise, to the Corinthian assembly — an assembly known for it’s blatant carnality, he could positively affirm the sanctifying work that the Lord would ultimately accomplish in their lives when he reminded them: “He shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Cor. 1:8)

 

Finishing the Course (Act 20:24)

Understanding and Appreciating the Trials and
Triumphs of the Shepherds of the Flock

 

Mark Kolchin

 

During his third missionary journey the Apostle Paul stopped to bid a brief, but poignant farewell to the Ephesian elders. (Acts 20:17-38) The tearful parting on the shores of the Mediterranean was the dramatic culmination of a stirring address that he gave regarding their labors for the Master. His plan had been to sail past Ephesus in order to be in Jerusalem for Pentecost and the opportunities that it provided for the Gospel. But being so close to the city where he had spent nearly three years establishing and strengthening the assembly, it was hard for him not to make a contact. While at Miletus he called for the elders of the church and gave them his own testimony of the toils and tears expended for the sake of the Gospel. Testifying how he had not shunned to declare unto them the whole counsel of God, he charged them to take heed to themselves and to the solemn responsibilities entrusted to them by the Lord. The address that he gave and the example that he exhibited not only provides elders today with a valuable blueprint for shepherding the flock, but it also gives the saints a unique perspective into the arduous, yet often unappreciated work of the oversight.

 

The Work of the Ministry (1 Cor. 16:10)

“Now if Timothy comes, see that he may be with you without fear for he worketh the work of the Lord, as I also do.”                         1 Cor. 16:10

 

 

What did Paul mean when he said that both he and Timothy worked the work of the Lord?  Certainly it did not mean a perfunctory attendance at the assembly meetings only to return home afterwards to a dull, every day routine. Nor would it seem that he was only referring to the occasional opportunities to witness to someone who just “happened” to ask him about his faith and why and what he believed?  Neither would it seem that he was referring to a glib, half-hearted promise to pray for a brother or sister going through a difficult trial or to “pitch-in” or to pitch in when there was a request to help out with a physical and financial concern in the assembly.  It would not even seem that it meant spending long hours writing up detailed reports of their latest ministry activities, as legitimate as that would seem.  Both of them were far too busy for that and probably would have taken the stance of letting the record “speak for itself”.  So what then, did Paul have in mind when he said to the Corinthian believers that he and Timothy worked the work of the Lord?

 

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