After a person professed of his/her sinfulness and need for a savior and placed his/her faith in Christ alone, this person becomes a new creature as pictured in 2 Corinthians 15:7.
Born again…like a baby once more but in a spiritual setting. What does a baby needs to grow? Milk!
“As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:” 1 Peter 2:2
Just like any baby, a new believer or a baby Christian cannot strive on their own. They need help. They need someone to feed them God’s word.
When we share the Gospel, and by the grace of God, the person got saved, the work doesn’t end there. It’s just the beginning.
Evangelism and discipleship goes hand in hand because we cannot leave a baby Christian on their own, they need follow-up, they need someone to guide them and look after their spiritual needs. Yes, bringing them to church is a good start but we need to see the importance of discipleship here. As a mother takes on the responsibility of nurturing her children, we are to do the same with baby Christians.
But then, is discipleship ONLY for new believers?
The answer is an obvious no but sadly some people think it is unusual for older believers to be discipled. Maybe, but hopefully not, out of pride. They might think, “I’m too old for this” or “I’ve been a Christian for ___ years, let them disciple the new ones in church”
Can you open your Bible to 2 Timothy 2:2-3 and Titus 2:3-5. These are discipleship verses and I believe it does not only pertain to new believers but to all believers in general.
Being a disciple as I have described in my previous blog (Am I Qualified To Start A Discipleship Ministry?) means that we are a student, a follower of Christ. So, whether you’ve been a Christian for a month, a year or a decade, you will never reach a point where there is nothing left to learn. Try to pause and examine your Bible reading journey. Have you read the entire Bible already? Hopefully yes. If so, when you read it again the next time, is it true that you are still learning something new about God and about yourself? Or maybe you are reminded of something that you’ve learned in the past that is so timely for your revival now?
See, you will always be a disciple. Your maturity does not change the fact that you need to be discipled. In fact, the more you grow in your faith, the more you will realize that you need Christ more than ever and that having someone to help you draw nearer to Him (’cause we are all prone to wander) is one of the greatest blessing that you’ll ever have in your life.
Some think older believers should be involved in a discipleship relationship but not as a disciple, they should be the discipler.
But guess what? You can actually be both. We had the opportunity to attend a church in the States where they have discipleship time every other Sunday during lunch. Each one of them has a disciple and they, too, are a disciple to someone else. That way, they are able to learn from God’s word from an older person, and in turn share what they have learned to someone younger than them. Imagine the impact of that kind of ministry in a church.
Discipleship is for everyone and everyone needs discipleship. If you are a young person (new or not-so new believer) I encourage you find a mentor. If you are an older person, I encourage you to find a mentee. Life is beautiful when it is shared, especially if the goal is to adorn the name of Christ together.