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Daniel A Oliva / 2024-05-01

 Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And I am with you always, to the very end of the," Matthew 28:19-20

   A. Many are wondering how their local congregation can grow numerically and spiritually?
     1.The KEY to church growth is found in the Great Commission originally spoken by Jesus to the 11 apostles.
     2. What is this SECRET to church growth? Is it still applicable and effective today? Let us KNOW the truth, John 8:32.

    B. This lesson shall be discussed in the following manner:
      1.What is the meaning of Biblical Discipleship?
      2. Evidences of Discipleship in the Scriptures?
      3. Multiplying Scheme-Arithmetic vs.Geometric?
      4. Effects of Discipleship to the Local Church?

   A. What Is The Meaning of Biblical Discipleship?
      1. " The process of learning to love and follow Jesus and becoming more like HIM in our attitudes and actions."
      2. It is also " seeking to make other disciples who want to do the same thing."
        a. Most often, discipleship occurs in a relationship with a mentor 
        b. Jesus mentored His twelve disciples within three and a half years time.
      3. A disciple is a "dedicated follower and imitator of Jesus."
        a. the Greek word " mathetes" describes a person who learns from another by instruction
        b. Discipleship includes the idea of one who intentionally learn by inquiry and observation
       c. " mathetes " is more than a mere pupil but describes " an adherent" of a teacher.
       d. Acts 11:26 " the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch."
     4. Discipleship is " life-sharing."
        a. " Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you NOT only the gospel of God but our LIVES as well," I Thessalonians 2:8
        b. The Great Commission of Matthew 28:19-20 is " discipleship in a NUTSHELL."
       c. Discipleship is " accepting the teachings of Jesus, not only in belief but in lifestyle."

   B. Evidences of Discipleship in the Scriptures
      1. In the Old Testament, for example, Moses raised up Joshua and Elijah guided Elisha.
      2. The New Testament showed the relationships of Jesus and His disciples; and of Paul and Timothy.
      3. Jesus said to the Jews who had believed Him, " If you abide in My Word, you are truly My disciples," John 8:31
      4. " People will know that you are MY disciples, if you have LOVE for one another, " John 13:35
        a. " The supreme EVIDENCE of discipleship, the authentic badge, is genuine LOVE for one another."
      5. " My Father is glorified that you bear much fruit and so prove to be MY disciples," John 15:8
        a. " If there is NO real fruit in our lives, we CANNOT claim to be true disciples."
        b. Fruit in Character ( the inward life) Galatians 5:22-23 " the fruit of the Spirit.. "
        c. " FRUIT is seen when SOULS are WON for Christ.
          - discipled by concerned disciples, and led on to spiritual maturity.
          -fruit bearing that is authentic mark of discipleship is NOT automatic but conditional
          - there must be a daily- dying to self and being filled with the Spirit

   C. Multiplyjng Scheme- Arithmetic vs Geometric
      1. The New Testament church started with 3000 members, Acts 2:41; then 5000 more in Acts 4:4 and " multitudes" in Acts 5:12
      2. But the Lord stopped adding and began " multiplying " disciples resulting to exponential growth.
      3. " And the word of God increased; and the number of disciples MULTIPLIED in Jerusalem greatly, " Acts 6:7
      4. But God's plan of multiplication was NOT going to be limited to one location
      5. The great persecution in Jerusalem scattered the church in Judaea, Samaria and other places, Acts 8:1,4
      6. This was a fulfillment of Acts 1:8 when the disciples would be witnesses " unto the uttermost part of the earth."
      7. God was no longer multiplying disciples but " churches " reaching all ethnic groups in every country around the world.
        a. Romans 1:8 " the faith was already known world-wide."
        b. Colossians 1:23 " your faith was preached to all the earth."
      8. Arithmetic Growth- 3000+3000= 6000+6000=12,000
      9. Geometric Growth- 100×100=10,000× 10,000=100 million

   D. Effects of Discipleship To The Local Church
      1. Generally, " when a church forsakes DISCIPLESHIP, its people will NOT grow and thus will NOT reach out."
       2. Effective discipleship will enable the person " to learn to make other disciples" and thus fulfill the great commission!
       3. The result is a life not conformed to this world but transformed to the image and likeness of Jesus, Romans 12:2
       4. Disciples will have peace in stead of chaos; hope instead of despair and joy instead of mourning
       5. Obtain spiritual maturity not carried about by every wind of doctine, Ephesians 4:14-15
       6. Attitude and culture of the church will change as people will be more ACTIVE in sharing their faith.
       7." Making disciples multiplies the church's influence" ( as light and salt ) in the community
       8. Discipleship will make people know and be like Jesus; obey God and seek His will.
       9. Discipleship will make the local church grow numerically and spiritually.
      10. Discipleship will make people become faithful till death, Revelation 2:10

   A. To Become a Disciple of Jesus, one must do the following first:
      1. Believe in Jesus and be baptized, Mark 16:16
      2. Repent and be baptized for the forgiveness of sins and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:38
      3. Now is the acceptable time.Today is the Day of Salvation, 2 Corinthians 6:2
      4. Jesus Christ is inviting you NOW to come to Him for spirutual rest, Matthew 11:28-30