Please consider this carefully!
Recently a friend wrote me an email asking if I had written anything about why we
should want to disciple others. He wrote: “we human, including Christian type, always
ask - out loud or subconsciously –‘what is in it for me???’ or what benefit do I get from
the action or offering you are making? Question for you Mark - Have you made a list
the benefits of DOING discipleship; to both parties.”
He also wrote what prompted his question. He is “trying to get discipleship training going
at the church. So what do you say to motive people to get off the bench and take action?"
I immediately realized what a great question he is asking. So now I’ve thought about it
and would like to answer with:
5 Reasons to be a Disciple-Maker:
Note, I have also written 5 Reasons to be Discipled for those wondering if they need
1. The joy of obeying Jesus.
Being a follower of Jesus means obeying Him, right? Hopefully we can all agree
on that. And in fact, if we’re not willing to obey Him, we should question if we are truly
“By this we can be sure that we have come to know Him: if we keep His
commandments.” (1 John 2:3 Berean Study Bible)
One of Jesus most fundamental commandments to us is “The Great Commission.”
The one imperative in it is to “make disciples.” (Matthew 28:19)
And as we think about and do it, we should also think about the fact that Jesus
never tells us to do something in order to make us miserable. He instructs us to do
His will in order to create in us a sense of joy, fulfillment, purpose, meaning,
direction and so on. We experience the joy of doing His will.
2. The joy of doing what Jesus did.
How did Jesus spend His ministry time? The vast majority of it was spent in small
Naturally we’re impressed with the teaching of and then feeding of 5,000. But
doing that was a small amount of Jesus’ time and frankly, it was likely some of
the least impactful. Consider John 6:66; “At this point many of his disciples turned
away and deserted him.” (NLT)
On the other hand, who “turned the world upside down?” (Acts 17:6) It was a
relatively small group of disciples who were most impacted by Jesus, primarily
the twelve disciples.
WWJD is a popular phrase for many. In case you missed it, it’s an acronym for
“What Would Jesus Do?” Many have worn bracelets with WWJD on them, or had
car bumper stickers with WWJD, or coffee mugs.
It’s a popular slogan, but to be more than just a slogan, to do what Jesus would do
is to be a disciple-maker.
3. The joy of helping others grow spiritually.
Recently Carolyn and I visited a church and we saw a couple who we haven’t
seen in perhaps 20 years. We chatted for a few minutes and then as we were
leaving the husband unexpectedly said, “By the way, your ministry really
How did I feel when I heard that? I felt like the Apostle John who wrote, “I could
have no greater joy than to hear that my children are following the truth.” (3 John
Our ministry, Discipleship Journeys with Jesus, has a huge vision. But in the end,
the number is big because the number represents individuals! It represents individual lives touched by Jesus, real people saved, walking with Him, and reproducing more disciples.
4. The joy of growing, by helping others grow spiritually.
When we help others grow spiritually, we usually grow more than they do. It’s
funny how that works—maybe it’s because we feel that we have a responsibility
to know more, do more, apply more.
And what’s also great about disciple-making is that you don’t have to be a:
a Bible scholar
a charismatic personality
All you have to do is find someone who doesn’t know as much as you do and
begin to help them learn more! Or several people, like Jesus did.
Then, as you begin to share with them, you begin to grow more than ever.
5. The joy of making life count.
Life is short! Who knows, this might be our last decade, our last year, our last
month, our last week, or even our last day. Maybe it is not any of these for you
and me, however there is a near 100% chance that it is our last century. And I’m
old enough now to tell you that even a century goes by quickly!
Someone asked a great question, “What are you investing your one and only life
in that will last for eternity?” Jesus said to do that! He said:
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and
vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for
yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy,
and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is,
there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-20 NIV)
Yes, Jesus was talking about money, however an even more important resource is
our time. How are we investing our time? Shouldn’t we be investing our time in
the Big Picture of what God wants us to do: make disciples?
Perhaps you’re willing, but a big question is: “Can I do it?” The answer is, “Of course
you can! Jesus never tells us to do something we cannot do!”
So, drop defenses such as:
I don’t know enough about the Bible
I’m not smart enough
I don’t have answers
I haven’t studied the Bible enough
I’m not spiritual enough
And don’t say, “I don’t know how.” If you’re saying, “I don’t know how,” you need to
check out a tool we’ve created for you! It’s called “Discipleship Journeys with Jesus
(DJJ), and it’s a free resource that makes it far easier to “make disciples” because it gives
“tracks to run on.” Thousands are being discipled using these studies based on biblical
journeys with Jesus. You can join with them. Just click the link and sign in.
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Additional resources about related subjects on this site:
Quote card: Spurgeon on Being a Missionary
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