I recently received an email from a dear brother who, as a participant in our discipling ministry years ago, grew exponentially in his relationship with Christ. He wrote,
“For nearly 13 years, I taught DT classes…and enjoyed every minute of it. Those classes changed my life. I continue to follow Growth Ministries but I find that many of the churches today no longer have any type of discipleship training (other than small groups) to encourage the spiritual growth of their members.”
Let me comment of his comment about “small groups”. Small groups are one of the most essential tools in discipling believers and some churches used them very effectively. However, many of them lack intentionality and systematic content. Groups are often left to study what they please. The goal is more for fellowship and mutual sharing than for instruction. Fellowship and mutual sharing are, likewise, essential to the discipling process but so is exposure to the whole counsel of the Word of God? (Acts 20.27)
Hebrews, alone, re-enforces the reality that discipleship begins with the elementary teachings (6.1) and moves on to the deeper truths of God’s Word; from milk to meat. Intentional discipleship will be systematic teaching both basic disciplines of growth as well as Christian values that greatly affect one’s maturing in Christ.
We’ll continue this discussion in our next post.