In the early church believers were called disciples. A disciple is a student. A student ultimately is to graduate and start doing that which he or she has been trained to do. Discipleship is God’s way to train believers to take their place in Christ’s Body and walk that calling out by faith in love.
The discipleship relationships of Moses to Joshua, Elijah to Elisha, Jesus to the eleven, and Paul to Timothy are the most perfect Scriptural examples of discipleship. In Timothy’s case the Scripture makes clear that Timothy, through his discipleship relationship with Paul, came to know Paul’s doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience, persecutions and afflictions. As a result of his submission to Paul, Timothy became like-minded to Paul, naturally caring for the people as Paul himself did. The same was true of Joshua and Moses and the other discipleship relationships highlighted. Paul then instructed Timothy to commit those same things that he had heard of Paul to faithful men who would teach others also. This is how the Body of Christ is to grow, while maintaining doctrinal purity.
In this ministry, we require three things of disciples.
- Agree with our Articles of Faith.
- Received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior and been baptized (all three) or desire to be so baptized.
- Tithe and, as led of the Lord, give offerings to this ministry.
With those things in place, a covenant between the disciple and his or her teacher is entered into before the Lord. Historically, discipleship was done in person, but we now have the ability to disciple people remotely through telephone, Skype, Zoom and various other methods. If you are interested in discipleship please be in touch.
Steven H. Atherton’s Discipleship Testimony | Discipleship through Preaching | Discipleship through Teaching