“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations…” Matthew 28:19
When a mom teaches her daughter how to cook, she is making a disciple. When a teenage boy practices the moves of his favorite football player, or a preteen girl dresses and acts like a pop star, they are becoming disciples. A disciple is a disciplined follower. We become disciples of whatever holds our focus—whether good or bad. We start to resemble our heroes, and we can also resemble our enemies unless forgiveness has taken away their power to mold us. When Jesus told His disciples to go and make other disciples, He was implying a lot more than we often realize.
Notice what Jesus did NOT tell them to do. He was not interested in a “show of hands” responding to the leading question: “Who wants to go to heaven when you die?” He never mentioned praying a prayer or “asking Jesus into your heart.” Those are catchy little phrases that we sometimes mistakenly substitute for Jesus’ real command to make disciples. He had often said that following Him would not be the easy path (Matt. 7:13-14). He warned His listeners to “count the cost” before deciding what He was worth to them (Luke 14:25-33). Only those who were willing to recognize what Peter recognized could become disciples. The eleven followers on the hillside that day would eventually be martyred for their faith. They had counted the cost of following and considered Jesus worth it. Before we can make disciples, we must BE disciples. Only then does the church grow and flourish.
What is Jesus worth to you? What has He asked you to forsake in order to make disciples of others?