My life’s vision (for now) is to make ten million disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ…
I can almost see you reacting like that! I’m getting used to those reactions when people hear my vision. Please understand that even I sometimes still do react like that when I hear myself say it. There is just a sense of disbelief about it. Like, how can that be done? Well, if your dreams don’t scare you, then they are too small!
I recently had the opportunity to speak at Mavuno Church Hill City, the Home of the Fearless. I was in good company as we talked about how we can fearlessly step out and influence our generation for God and for good. I of course dwelt on the subject of discipleship and mission.
A. WHY DISCIPLESHIP?
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20)
Authority & The Kingdom
First of all, Jesus commissioned His disciples to an urgent and important mission of discipling nations. He starts by declaring how all authority both in heaven and on earth has been given to Him. He then did something unfathomable; He passed that authority on to His disciples and all those who would follow in their footsteps! This predicates two things:
- That the rightful use of Christ’s authority is the making of disciples. In other words, when we use Christ’s authority outside the context of discipleship, we are actually abusing it! If someone came to me and said, “Mosze, all this ten billion shillings has been given to me. Go therefore and look for a great building in Naguru and buy it for us to set up our office”. If the first thing I do is buy a plot in Bulindo, just because I have money, then I’m abusing the authority and trust of the person who gave me the money.
- That the making of disciples is actually the only possible way we are going to see Christ’s Kingdom authority permeate the world. Thus far we’ve tried just about everything except that which Jesus exemplified and commanded; making disciples. It’s slow and messy. So we’d rather have crowds of converts and fans of Jesus (and His leaders), than a handful of disciples who are going to multiply and bring Kingdom influence. We are adding instead of multiplying.
The Vision For The Nations
Secondly, we see that Christ’s vision and scale is the discipling of whole nations, not just individuals in those nations. Yes, we must start with individuals, but just like Abraham’s personal relationship with God became the relationship of a whole nation (Israel) with Him, so must it be with us. Whole nations should be learning after Christ and how to live out the true Life that He has given to those who believe on Him. In other words, Jesus wants to cease to simply be our personal Lord and Savior and become our national Lord and Savior. His vision is for nations, but we have reduced it to fit our methods that cater for only crowds, however big or small those crowds are!
B. HOW DO WE PULL THIS OFF?
And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also. (2 Timothy 2:2)
Faithful Men and Women
Let’s say there are two people God is calling, who are going into ministry to create impact. One person starts leading 100 people to Jesus every single day, nonstop for the next thirty years. That will be 36,500 people per year, which will lead to 1,095,000 converts over thirty years. No breaks, no holidays, no weekends, no sickness, no job… just full-time evangelism.
At the same time, another person starts discipling 10 people with a 50% success rate in three years; meaning only five of them will grow start discipling 10 people after three years. They do the same and they too have a 50% success rate. This person is going to focus on only ten people for the rest of their lives and hope that five of them start reaching ten people in three years and that carries on to the next ten and the next ten and the next… This person keeps their job, needs no ministry headquarters or even hectic finances to make this happen. They simply use the resources and relationships they already have. Now, watch the math of multiplication…
Now let me ask you two questions; How old will you be in thirty years? Secondly, how many people reading this are actually able to lead 100 people to the Lord every single day? Let alone ten… ok one! But, how many people reading this can actually commit to ministering to ten people where they live, work or play, consistently for three years until they too are able to try it out for others? Possibly many of you. Moreover we are including the possibility of 50% failure! It is evident that you will reach many more by focusing on a few. That’s what Jesus did and that’s what we must do. As Mike Breen has asserted, building a church does not guarantee that you’ll make disciples. But, making disciples guarantees that the church will grow.
So, you’re wondering how you can have lasting impact in our generation? Be Fearless.
Go. Make. Disciples.
You don’t need permission (Christ Himself already commissioned you). You don’t need a title. You don’t need a theology degree. You don’t need to quit your job. You don’t need a big budget. You don’t need ministry headquarters.
You only need Obedience, the Scriptures and the Holy Spirit, to start where you are.