Jesus gave a command to all of us to make disciples. Matthew 28:18-20. Many of us have never been trained on a simple, infinitely duplicable method for how to make disciples. On this page, I want to share some simple and profound tools that will enable any follower of Jesus to effectively share the gospel with the people where they live, work, and play.
Before getting into the training videos, I must make one point that cannot be ignored. We want to see disciple-making movements and church-planting movements everywhere. But, it has been found by researchers like Jerry Trousdale, the author of The Kingdom Unleashed, that every one of the movements currently happening on the earth began with prayer and fasting and is sustained by prayer and fasting (at last count I know of, there are 651 of them). Disciple-making movements are a work of the Holy Spirit not the results of humans following cool strategies to plant churches. So, if you want to see the Kingdom of God come on earth as it is in heaven, then I encourage you to begin with prayer and fasting and the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9-13).
These videos were created by Troy Cooper of e3partners and available to all who want to multiply disciples and churches around the world.
The first tool is referred to simply as the Three Circles. It is a very simple tool that anyone of most any age can use to share the gospel with people who do not follow Jesus. For those with a more advanced theological understanding, this tool can also be used to elaborate effectively the greater breadth of the gospel.
Okay, so you have shared the gospel with someone and they have repented and believed the gospel. Now, what do you do with them? The Great Commission gives us two imperatives, baptize and teach to obey Jesus’ commands.
Now, you have shared the gospel with the 3 Circles tool and have baptized your new brother or sister in Christ. What is next? The next step is called the 411. It has that name because it answers four questions on one sheet of paper in one hour or less.
If for some reason you are not able to baptize your new believer right away, go straight to the 411 even if they have not yet been baptized. Some will not be able to do immediate baptism for various reasons. In some cases, there is not sufficient water to immerse a person. This is one reason why some church traditions use sprinkling instead of immersion as the mode of baptism. In some traditions, only ordained men are allowed to baptize or serve the Lord’s Supper. If you are part of such a tradition, then introduce your new brother or sister to your ordained leader as soon as possible to arrange for baptism.
Water baptism is a critical part of disciple-making. It is one of the three commands Jesus included in the Great Commission: Go, baptize, and teach to obey.
Now let’s get to it.
Who will your reach?
What will you say?
What more will you say?
This training is of no avail if it never gets put to work. So, now we want you to set some goals for disciple-making.
Review the 411
In order to see the Great Commission accomplished and a disciple-making movement happen, we need to see groups of people coming to Christ at a time, not just one at a time. What principles do we find in Scripture that will aid us in seeing a movement in disciple-making happen in our community? These next two videos will share two concepts we find in Scripture that we need to pray for and pursue.
How do people respond to the gospel? What do you do with the different responses?
This training has given you the tools to be able to effectively present the gospel and begin the process of discipleship in the lives of the new believers. Remember, Jesus commanded us to not only share the gospel and baptize new believers, but also to teach them to obey all things he has commanded. You won’t be able to do that in one session. This requires the establishing of a regular meeting with the new believers to begin to help them discover from Scripture the things that Jesus has commanded them to do.
The process taught here may seem different from your teaching tradition. This approach models a way for people to discover for themselves what God has to say in the Scriptures. This is best implemented in a small group of new believers, although it can be done one-on-one. This approach requires you to trust the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to do their work in the hearts of new believers.
This initial ongoing study is called The Commands of Christ. You can download a copy here www.obeychrist.com. The next video is longer and models how to conduct the Discovery Bible Study using the Commands of Christ curriculum. This is the first of the commands, the command to repent and believe.
This training is on my website for use anywhere in the world. So, it will have to be applied appropriately wherever you live. In some cases, you will be part of a local church where you can incorporate the new believers into your church easily. In other cases, you may be taking the gospel to a nearby village where there is no church. In that case in particular, what you have been doing in making disciples is the beginning of planting a new church. This next video takes you through what is it to be a healthy church.
The goal is to take the gospel to all people groups on the earth, what the Bible refers to as all nations. We all have groups of people around us who are far from God and do not know the gospel. They do not know who Jesus is and what he has done for them. Jesus gave us strategy in Scripture for entering into these people groups and planting churches. Next is the Biblical model taught by Jesus and used in the book of Acts.