"After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them two by two ahead of him to every town and place where he was about to go. He told them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field. Go! I am sending you out like lambs among wolves. Do not take a purse or bag or sandals; and do not greet anyone on the road. “When you enter a house, first say, ‘Peace to this house.’ If someone who promotes peace is there, your peace will rest on them; if not, it will return to you. Stay there, eating and drinking whatever they give you, for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from house to house. “When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is offered to you. Heal the sick who are there and tell them, 'The kingdom of God has come near to you.’" Luke 10:1-9
For the 40 years I have been privileged to serve in pastoral ministry I have read many books and attended many seminars and been exposed to many different plans or strategies of discipleship. Discipleship IS the deal for those of us who claim the Name of Jesus. But it was never meant to be a program or a strategy, it is intended to be a lifestyle. It is what He expects us to do!
In this encounter between Jesus and His disciples He demonstrates the model for making disciples. I invite you to pay close attention to how Jesus changed these followers into disciples.
First, Jesus did ministry and they watched. He preached the gospel and declared the Kingdom, healing the sick, delivering the captives, casting out demons, and doing miracles. While they were impressed and amazed, it often seemed like they really didn't grasp the significance of Who He is and what He came to do. But He ministered in power and authority and they watcher.
Second, Jesus did ministry and they helped. When He fed the five thousand He had them find the loaves and fishes. Then He had them help organize the crowd and hand out the food. Finally, He asked them to gather up the leftovers. He did ministry and they helped.
Third, Jesus sent them to do ministry and He watched. They discovered that when they went in His Name declaring His Kingdom healing happened and deliverance happened and salvations happened! Not only did they change lives but their lives were changed in the process!
Fourth, Jesus celebrated with them when they returned from their mission trip with stories galore! When His Kingdom came the kingdom of darkness fell!
Finally, as Jesus prepared to ascend into Heaven following His death and resurrection, He commanded these disciples whom He had disciples to go and make more disciples. In other words, they were to do ministry while others watched. Then they were to to ministry together. After that they were to let the others minister while they watched and then all of them would celebrate together!
Disciples disciple! It is what they do! It is how they live. It is why they live!
Who are you discipling? Who is discipling you? Are you spending your life or investing it?