The goals of these lessons are to help you understand the Scripture and to give you the tools to disciple others in this process. We have a responsibility to grow in our love and service to God and others. This is what it means to be the church. We are not merely responsible for our own spiritual well-being; we are called to minister to the people around us, teaching them to obey all the things that Jesus commands.
There are two guidelines to follow during these lessons and beyond. These guidelines are the heart behind true discipleship.
- Teach what you learn. This material is not meant to be read, but to be taught. There are plenty of options to read if you want to just absorb information. The emphasis of discipleship is to get you in the habit of passing on the knowledge you gain.
- Share life, not just information. The discipleship process is meant to be highly relational. True discipleship involves deep relationships. Jesus didn’t simply lead a weekly Bible study. He lived life with His disciples and taught them through actions as well as words. While this requires a much deeper commitment, it is the only way to truly make disciples.
Discipleship by definition requires a leader and followers. These lessons are designed for a leader and disciples to work through together. This doesn’t mean that the leader needs to be old and completely mature, or that the disciple needs to be a full-fledged novice. We’re all at various stages of maturity, and we all need the people around us to help guide us toward Christ-likeness.
The goal is that once you’ve walked through the material, you can turn around and guide someone else through it. In fact, you are encouraged to guide others as you are learning! Don’t wait until you have completed it all before teaching others what you learn.
Every week you will work through a study guide. These lessons will help you reflect on biblical truths and how these truths should shape your life. Each session will include questions that will challenge you to think about the material that is covered.
What You Are Working Toward
Being a disciple of Jesus Christ means that we learn from Him, fellowship with Him, and obey EVERYTHING He commands us. We study the Bible to learn about who God is, who we are, and what God is doing in our world. The Bible compels us to join God in what He is doing in and around us. Studying the Bible is important, but the goal is never knowledge for the sake of knowledge.
As you work through this material, you should be looking to change. Being a disciple of Jesus means that we are being transformed into His image. God wants to change us so much that it intrigues others. This gives us the opportunity to tell them about the God who is transforming us. Teaching others about Christ is essential to being one of Jesus’ disciples. As we teach others to love and obey Jesus, we are fulfilling His command to make disciples. Your goal should be to train up other followers of Jesus who are even more committed, talented, and equipped than you are. Whether you guide others through this material or use some other means to teach them to be followers of Jesus, make it your goal to spend your life raising up followers who will give everything for the glory of God.