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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

What is a Disciple - 5

So far we have said that one who is a disciple is a follower of Christ who is steeped in the Word and has a life characterized by prayer.  The third avenue for one who aspires to follow Christ is to be engaged in community.  Note that does not read be in community, rather engaged in community.  There is a difference.  By this I do not mean that one is in a church, Bible study, or small group, in the sense that one attends.  Rather that one is intentionally engaged in some or all of those activities, not as a spectator, or a consumer, but as a vital contributor.
If you poke around the Bible on this issue in the various ways it shows up, either fellowship or church or gathering, you will soon validate that the expectation is that of engagement rather than attendance.  Hebrews 10:24 – 25, tells us we are to engage with our minds, to think how to best contribute, to stimulate those in the assembly.  Hebrews 3:13, instructs us to daily involve ourselves in encouraging one another – oh that is another place you can look, search BibleGateway.com for all of the places “one another” shows up in the epistles.  There is a lot of books, tests, workshops, videos, messages… on spiritual gifts, the key passages are Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, and Ephesians 4.  The reason those gifts are given is summarized perhaps best in Ephesians 4:16, each part of the body contributes to the building up of the body.

To what end?  Essentially, based on the final command of Christ in Matthew 28:18-20, world domination.  The community is to aggressively take His message and reproduce it by raising up disciples throughout the world.  So the community is more of a huddle between plays where the team regroups rather than a restaurant or a mall to pick and choose ones purchase.  Those from the church in Jerusalem turned the world upside down (Acts 17:6 NKJV).

What is your community like?  Is it engaging your gifts and fanning your passion to follow and serve Christ by reaching your world?  If not how are you engaged in changing that?

2 comments:

  1. Great post Mike.. I don't get to read as often as I'd like, but you are so right about community.. this is a shared mission around deep bonds of love/friendship - and what a difference that makes! -Andy

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