Having just participated in the ‘Multiply Movement’ webcast put on by Francis Chan and David Platt, I have come away both convicted and encouraged. The event centered on the command of Jesus to go out and make disciples. As the last command given by Jesus before He ascended to Heaven, disciple-making is one of our primary objectives. We are not only to live as disciples ourselves, but we are to multiply that by making other disciples who will make other disciples who will make other disciples. This is how the message of Christ will expand and change our world! The love of Jesus is not something we can keep to ourselves. To be real, love must be shared.
At a recent service at my church, the pastor had everyone stand who had grown up in church or had been a Christian at least ten years. He then instructed those who had never led someone to Christ to sit down. Of those remaining, he then asked that those who had never discipled someone to also take a seat. He repeated this exercise at each of our weekend services. The results were the same. Fewer than 5% of Christians have ever discipled someone else. What’s going on here? This is a command given to us by Jesus Himself (Matthew 28:18-20). We claim to be followers of Christ, and say He is Lord of our life. Yet fewer than 5% are actually obeying a direct command! How can we claim to follow Jesus when we ignore the things He told us to do?
We either don’t really care about following Christ, or we are afraid to do so. If we don’t actually care, if He’s not important enough to prioritize in our lives, then we have a serious problem. We are lip-service Christians who I fear are in serious jeopardy of being rejected by Christ (Matthew 7:21-23). If we are simply afraid, that doesn’t let us off the hook either. Jesus said that He has given us a Spirit of power, not of fear (2 Timothy 1:7). To not believe Him is to make Him to be a liar. If Jesus is a liar then our entire faith is in vain.
Our fear of discipling someone else is irrational. What are we afraid of, being embarrassed? Do we fear not looking cool? Are we concerned about being rejected or perhaps losing a friend? If we do not tell our friends about Jesus and instruct them on how to live for Christ, we risk losing them for eternity. Isn’t it worth risking a friendship in the here and now in order to save their soul for the ever after? Jesus was not embarrassed to die for us. He wasn’t concerned about looking cool as He hung naked on a cross. He didn’t consider rejection by man to be the end of the story. He simply obeyed the commands of His Father, and in so doing rescued you and me from an unimaginable fate.
We must be about making disciples who will make disciples. There is no room for fear, and no time for hesitation. This isn’t something we need to think about if we are committed to following Jesus. Disciple making is a fundamental responsibility for Kingdom people. Don’t be one of the 95% who never invest their lives in the life of another. Don’t turn away from the command of Jesus. Go out and make disciples. Go in power, for to this we have been called. Focus on Jesus. Do His work. No fear.