Tue, 09/25/2007 – 08:16 — David Watson
I am beginning a new project to develop a Study Bible for people who want to be Disciple Makers and Church Planters. Following is the rationale for the Study Bible. I would be interested in your input regarding the content of this Study Bible. If you have any suggestions or recommendations regarding content, I would be very interested in hearing your opinion. Please post your response to this site.
18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (NIV)
The final command of Jesus before He ascended was to “make disciples of all nations.” In most people’s thinking, discipleship is a post conversion process. But the disciples Jesus called were not Christians when He called them. He invested his life in people who had no clue about who He really is.
Jesus closed out His earthly ministry with the command to “teach them to obey everything I have commanded you.” According to John 14:15, obedience is our test of love. “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (NIV)
The primary focus of the Disciple Makers’ Study Bible will be to help new disciples to discover all the commands of God, and begin to practice them in everyday living. Becoming disciple makers will be the natural outcome of this obedience based discipleship process.
Every area of life will be impacted by this Study Bible’s focus on obedience. But a major focus of the study will be lostness, and helping the lost to discover Jesus and fall in love with Him, and leading them to become obedient disciple makers. This obedience process will push all of us into areas where the Gospel is not, and into relating to people who do not know Jesus. Communities of Christ Followers will be established where there are none and where the church is weak, and these communities will be taught to follow the whole counsel of the Word of God, which will result in the transformation of lives, families, and communities.
The Disciple Makers’ Study Bible will through a Scripture only approach:
– Help lost people to discover God, and how to relate to Him in a meaningful, eternal way.
– Guide new Believers through the process of discovering all the commands of Jesus and committing to obey them regardless of consequences or circumstances.
– Lead emerging Disciples into the process of replicating themselves.
– Train new leaders how to take a group of new Believers from just being a group to being a fully functioning church.
– Encourage churches to replicate themselves as a natural part of being and doing church.
– Challenge leaders to always be in the process of making more leaders.
– Focus all of us on obedient ministry to those around us in conspicuously spiritual ways that lead to sharing our faith, making more disciples who will make more disciples, training more leaders who will train more leaders, and establishing more churches that will start more churches.