The general motivation for making disciples is covered elsewhere but there are also reasons why churches might be motivated and reasons why churches are often not motivated.
Above everything else, of course, is the fact that making disciples is what Jesus has commissioned His church to do.
The benefits for churches of intentionally making disciples
Mature, Christ-like members. Imagine the difference. Many of the issues we face in church are the result of immaturity – self-centredness, pettiness, immorality, division… Imagine having many people who thought and talked and acted like Jesus.
A motivated work-force. Christ-like people will serve. Making disciples means that the people in our churches will find their own ministry and exercise it with commitment. Many will serve outside the church but that is crucial and ought to be encouraged.
A constant supply of new leaders. A by-product of producing mature Christians is the development of new leaders. That, after all, is what Jesus accomplished. Many churches would give their right arms for leaders who can and will lead. The problem may be that they haven’t grown the people who can lead.
Barriers to disciple-making in churches
London Institute For Contemporary Christianity – Why Churches Resist Making Disciples (article)
Edmund Chan – Obstacles To Overcome (article)
Three Things Churches Love That Kill Outreach – Ed Stetzer article
Five Reasons We Don’t Disciple (Barry Cooper blog)
- We preach cheap grace
- Our churches are Seeker-sensitive but Believer-insensitive
- Our churches are less converted (the previous post continued)
- Our churches are programme-dependent
- Our churches are too often ashamed of the gospel and therefore assume the gospel
Encouragements to churches to make disciples
Discipleship is Not A Dirty Word – J. Lee Grady
Assessment – How good are we at making disciples?
An assessment of a church’s disciple-making (London Institute for Contemporary Christianity)
Church Disciple-making Questionnaire (Omega Discipleship Ministries)
How Whole Life is Your Church? (London Institute For Contemporary Christianity)
How To Tell If Your Church Is Actually Making Disciples (Carey Nieuwhof)
Your Church Is Only As Good As Its Disciples
More General Assessment Tools Measuring Success In A Church
For a discussion of assessment within a church more generally click here.