Discipleship is a term that is bantered around in the Church quite often with likely a variety of perspectives on what it means and how to accomplish it. We recognize as believers the call to go and make disciples. Something tells me most know that famous passage yet when it comes to following that clear command of Jesus, we are not sure if obeying that command involves all believers or just a select few in the church, say those in leadership positions whose job it is to be engaged in discipleship.
So what exactly is this thing called discipleship, why does it matter, and what does God have to say about it in Scripture? These are all issues addressed with great wisdom by Pastor and author Robby Gallaty in his book Rediscovering Discipleship: Making Jesus’ Final Words Our First Work.
The title of this book is quite apt as it speaks to the need within the Body of Christ to focus and for that matter to rediscover discipleship. This, of course, implies that discipleship was something the people of God had as a focus at one time but for some reason or another stayed from practicing. Gallaty aptly notes that two important movements within church history “altered the course of human history” with those movements, of course, being the Renaissance and the Reformation. Both are examples of discovering something that once existed in practice, was lost, and was rediscovered. The same should be true in our approach to discipleship.
Gallaty divides this helpful book into two sections with one focusing on the model Jesus established for making disciples and the second half providing the reader with practical tools for putting what has been learned from Jesus’ model into everyday practice.
In order to make disciples, we have to think and approach this issue from a biblical mindset. Gallaty rightly notes the worldview conflict that existed during the time of Jesus and the apostles, namely that battle between the Hebraic (biblical) worldview and the Greek pagan perspective that was rapidly spreading across the world. Jesus told His disciples (and by extension us) to go and make disciples, teaching them– all that Jesus commanded which is God’s Word. Translate that to our world today and what Gallaty has pointed out becomes rather important. Making disciples can only take place by being rooted in Scriptural truth ourselves so that our discipleship making is rooted in God’s Word. It involves a whole Bible mindset, something Gallaty also saliently reminds the reader.
I was challenged throughout this book to view myself as a disciple maker. There is the tendency to think this is just the job of the pastor or church leadership. The reality is we are all called to make disciples and we all have some influence to some degree on others.
Gallaty’s book was a wake-up call to this reader to take a more proactive approach to discipleship, to stay focused on the truth of Scripture, and to actively look for ways to influence others to the glory of God. It is, after all, a command to us by Jesus and Gallaty’s book is an excellent resource to help us understand how Jesus did it and to put those principles into practice.
I received this book for free from Zondervan and the opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”