Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Cold Hard Truth

Someone once said, "Disciple does not mean Christian - it means "learner, student, adherent."

Dino Senesi made this statement, "Making disciples out of the harvest becomes one of the greatest and most often neglected challenges a church planter must face. Perhaps this is why so few are doing a good job at it. The body of evidence is compelling. We don't do well at making disciples."

*George Barna in his book Revolution, shares these dismal facts with us:
  • The typical churched believer will die without leading one person to Christ
  • Nine percent of born-again adults have a biblical worldview
  • Churched Christians give away an average of 3% of their income
  • One out of every six churched believers has an accountability relationship with another believer
  • A church married couple is as likely to get a divorce as an unchurched married couple
Why do you think that true biblical discipleship is not being done in the average church? What does "make disciples" mean to you? How do we make disciples?

*George Barna, Revolution, (Ventura, CA: Barnabooks, 2005), pp 32-35

Happy 53rd Birthday to my sister Nancy K. (Metcalf) Dupre of Bellingham, WA


Ma ~ said...

Our main responsibility is the discipleship of our children. I am blessed with a wonderful spiritual leader in our home (the Mr.) who takes this task very seriously.

I think most churches don't disciple because, frankly it takes a lot of time and commitment, and sadly most "churches" are just going through the motions.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

You certainly do come up with some very important issues, makes one think .
Loved the read.
Have a good day


Seams Inspired said...

Good questions, Gregg! Here's my thoughts...

Until the churches stop thinking of Christianity on worldly terms, discipleship cannot happen. It's not about growing a church monetarily.

As for the second question...what makes a good disciple? I have no idea! LOL I suppose it's someone who constantly digs into scripture and finds meaning in its words to share with others.

I'll be interested to see the other points of view on this topic. Thanks for sharing and posting today!

Happy Birthday to your sister! My-oh-my, you're family sure is celebrating this month, aren't they? ;o)

Happy Wednesday! :o)
Larri at Seams Inspired

Cathy M. said...

O.k. [Deep Breath..] My answer is going to offend some folks: I think disciples aren't being made because there is no regeneration. In the average pew in America on any given Sunday, the percentage of comfortably lost souls is probably around 75%. Worst of all, I think that statistic holds true for the pulpit as well. Where truth is held lightly, the Bible is set beneath any number of ideologies, and discipline is absent, you can bet the majority of folks in that atmosphere are unregenerate.

You just can't teach a corpse how to act alive.

Gregg said...

MA - Thank God for your Mr. Thank God for those fathers who disciple their children. You are right, it does take time, effort, and a willingness to get one's hands "dirty." Sad for those multitude of churches who are just playing.

Seams Inspired - Unfortunately the church is worldly today because for the most part it is worldly. A number of churches are full every Sunday of unregenerated people. Yes, my family is celebrating Dec and that isn't half of it yet.

Yvonne - I try! Thanks.

Cathy M. - I now wish I had offered a "prize." You are 100% absolutely correct! That is what I had hoped someone would say. We are playing church today instead of being the church. It is my prayer that you would offend many to the cross with your answer, your testimony, and your life. Yes, there are many in the pulpit who do not know the God of whom they preach. What sad, challenging, yet encouraging times we are living in. Thank you!


Diane said...

Good thoughts this morning brother. I think there are a couple of reasons. The first is that the Word of God is not being taught and preached acurately. Even seemingly subtle error in a church can have an anesthetising effect on a congregation. Another is sin in the leadership. Men and women may have sound doctrine but dark unyielded hearts, this will quench the Spirit.

When sound doctrine is united by a pure and sincere faith and walk, discipleship WILL happen as a result of obedience. Discipleship is just contagious that way. The organizational "structure" of it is merely a peripheral.

Boy, you sure got me going pretty early in the morning, Gregg!

Michelle said...

I didn't read all the other comments two cents...(BTW: I LOVE CATHY'S ANSWER!)

Accountability doesn't exist in the church anymore because people are too sensitive and too easily offended. People are in "church" for the easy believism and the emotionalism involved...aka SECULAR HUMANISM! I've been a "Christian" since I was 11 and had not even heard the term "biblical worldview" until the last year and a half.
To me "making disciples" is teaching, rebuking, guiding, etc. in the ways of Christ... I believe that discipleship starts first and foremost in the home under the father's authority. I believe when there has been generational faithfulness...we see the proof in the pudding. (Hope that makes sense...)


Sister Cathy nailed it!

I would only add that modern day evangelism doesn't help either :-(


Kansas Bob said...

When I think about making disciples I always go back to the beginning - Jesus. His way of making disciples literally changed the world. Why would we ever want to do it any other way. In truth, most (maybe all) church leaders simply do not have time to do life with a small group of 12 or so people - that is why they do programs and sermon series and call it discipleship. I think that it is time to go back to basics - back to Jesus.