Key Principles and People for Discipleship

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Discipleship done well makes disciple-making disciples. In this post, Mike Calhoun shares the biblical foundational pro couples of discipleship and Ric Garland describes the three people needed for healthy discipleship. Mike is the leader of Word of Life Fellowship and Ric leads the Word of Life Local Church Ministry.

Before we hear from Mike, watch this video about a young man who has embraced the role of mentoring.

Chris understands his responsibility to lead younger people in the faith. As you listen to Mike Calhoun share the biblical basis for the foundational principles of discipleship, think about how you can apply these principles to build more mentors like Chris in your youth ministry.

Mike speaks to thousands of students, leaders and youth pastors through a diversified ministry of camps, conferences and evangelistic events. He has a deep burden for evangelism, discipleship and development of future leadership.

Read 2 Timothy 2:1–2. Paul gives Timothy three things that must be present in the discipleship process.

  • The discipler must find his strength in the grace of Jesus 
  • The discipler must learn and grow from the teaching of others
  • The disciple must be competent to take what he learns and then go teach others

Where do you typically find your strength? Do you trust in your own talent or the strength of your will, or do you daily lean on Jesus?
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From what source do you find your growth? Who teaches and instructs you to help you grow in the Word? Do you sometimes neglect the instruction of others?
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How can you build competence into a disciple so that he will gain the ability to disciple others? How can you know when a disciple is ready to lead another in the faith?
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Discipleship is a cyclical process. When we correctly engage in biblical discipleship, we will "reproduce reproducers" who live in the strength of the grace of Jesus and help others to do the same.

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In this next clip, Ric Garland describes the three different types of people that every Christian needs in order to have a complete picture of discipleship. No one has gotten too old to be in discipleship and we can all find opportunity to help a younger person become what we already are.

Ric is purposeful in helping others to live biblically principled lives. His ministry includes speaking and teaching around the world and leading Word of Life in evangelism, discipleship and leadership development.  

There are three different people that all take part in the discipleship process, and every believer will benefit by having each of these in his or her life.
  1. Paul - an older person you can emulate
  2. Epaphroditus - a brother or sister who helps, works with, challenges, and encourages you
  3. Timothy - a younger person that you will infect with your passion

Do you have a Paul in your life? Describe the benefits of this relationship. If not, who might you approach to start this relationship?
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Do you have an Epaphroditus (or few) in your life? How do you and this friend encourage and challenge each other? If you do not have someone like this, who might God be leading you to befriend in this way?
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Do you have a Timothy to pour into? How do you help and guide this person in their walk? What tasks do you give them to do? If you are not serving a younger person in this way, who are some that would be good candidates?
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If your answer was "no" to any of these questions, how will you pray for guidance and then approach this person who might fill that role in your life?
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Read Philippians 3:17. Spend some time in prayer this week for your discipleship relationships. If you are missing any of these, remember to pray for God's provision in filling that role in your life.

For more RightNow Media training posts and teaching videos with Mike Calhoun, click here.

For more RightNow Media training posts and teaching videos with Ric Garland, click here