Search ministries minnesota

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Search ministries minnesota

  1. 1. Search Ministries Minnesota A Look at New Testament Evangelism and Discipleship By Bob Stiles June 26, 2001
  2. 2. Search Ministries Minnesota  Background (Mission and Activities)  New Testament Evangelism – Definition, Styles, and Strategy  New Testament Discipleship – Introduction, Strategy, Final Comments, and Summary  Next Steps
  3. 3. Search Ministries Minnesota Mission Statement “To help bring spiritual seekers from the business and professional communities to a saving faith in Jesus Christ and to assist them in becoming His fully-devoted followers.”
  4. 4. Search Ministries Minnesota Outreach and Follow-Up Initiatives:  Open Forums  Principles for Meaningful Living and Ethics Presentations  Straight Talk Men’s Events  Small Groups – How many?  Other (Golf Tournaments, Lighthouse, etc.)
  5. 5. Search Ministries Minnesota Training Initiatives:  Heart for the Harvest Seminars  Omega Project Evangelism Training  Apologetics Resource Center  Small Group Leader Training – How many?
  6. 6. New Testament Evangelism – Definitions  NT does not use the word “evangelism,” but it does talk a lot about “proclaiming the good news.”  For Luke – “witnessing” means to “to bear witness in the sense of proclaiming Christ” (Acts 4:33; 23:11).  Another definition – “Evangelism is the process of sharing the gospel with the love of Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit, leaving the results to God.”  Evangelism is both an event and a process (Acts 18:4).
  7. 7. New Testament Evangelism – Styles  Six Styles: – “Relationship” – a combination of the interpersonal style of Matthew in Lk 5:29 and the invitational style of the woman at the well in Jn 4. – Confrontational – Peter in Acts 2. – Intellectual – Paul in Acts 17. – Testimonial – the blind man in John 9. – Serving – Dorcas in Acts 9. Search Ministries engages all six styles!
  8. 8. New Testament Evangelism – Strategy  God cares about His lost sheep (Lk 19:10), which can be seen in Lk 15:3-7, where there is great rejoicing in heaven when just one sinner repents and comes to the Lord.  The most effective evangelism not only shares Christ’s message, it also follows Christ’s methodology.  Jesus reveals His strategy for targeted evangelism in Matthew 10 and Luke 10, as follows:
  9. 9. New Testament Evangelism – Strategy Con’d.  Before Jesus sent out His disciples to evangelize He gave them specific instructions about (Mt 10:5-23; Lk 9:1-6; 10:1-16): - Who they were to spend time with. - Who they were to ignore. - What they were to say. - How they were to share the gospel message.  That is, He taught them how to evangelize! The Bible tells us to be aggressive and bold in our evangelism. (Acts 9:27-28; 13:46; 14:3; Eph 6:19; 1 Thess 2:2). Yet we are to be culturally sensitive to those we want to reach (Lk 10:8).
  10. 10. The Spiritual Journey B I R T H ? . . . ! ? . . . ! ? . . . !
  11. 11. New Testament Discipleship – Introduction  Jesus taught us also how to make disciples. - Did not evangelize the masses to make disciples. - Built leaders deeply before building followers broadly. - Spent time training the 12 (about 2 yrs.) before entrusting them with leadership. - Focused on quality, trained leaders rather than mass evangelism. Disciple-making is not done quickly! (Quality - not quantity.)
  12. 12. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy  Spend 24-30 months in small groups, training and developing faithful and competent leaders.  Rick Warren’s (Saddleback Church) model “The Life Development Process.” 4 Stages: – Truths we need to study. – Disciplines we need to develop. – Gifts we need to discover. – Skills we need to acquire.  In business terms you could say Search Ministries is in the disciple-development business, and its product is changed lives – Christ like people.
  13. 13. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  As Christ made simple fishermen into fully devoted disciples, mature in their faith, He moved through 4 phases:  Phase 1: Come and See (Jn 1:38-39): - The evangelism and basic follow-up phase. - 3 to 6 months spent with new or non-Christians. - low commitment as they explore, investigate, and get questions answered. (Open groups) (Search – Home discussion parties) - share information necessary for the disciples to make an initial commitment to Christ. - Resources: Example - Search Ministries “Beginnings” and “Foundations” Bible study.
  14. 14. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 1: Come and See – Some characteristics/skills upon completing this phase: 1. Made a decision to trust Christ as Savior. 2. Has assurance of salvation. 3. Understands the need for Worship, Bible Study, Prayer and Fellowship. 4. Understands God’s will for him/her to be a disciple and what is involved. 5. Has been challenged to become an accountable disciple (a person who grows in keeping his/her commitments to God in the context of loving relationships) – and has been given time to make a solid decision about the challenge. 6. Has publicly identified with Christ through baptism.
  15. 15. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 2: Come and Follow (Mk 1:16-17): (a) Step 1: Preparation: - This phase lasts about 12 to 15 months. - Focused (closed) study groups; commitment is high – assigned homework (2+ hrs/wk.) and accountability are key. - Teach the basic spiritual disciplines of a Christian life: Faith, Bible study, prayer, obedience, Scripture memory, accountable fellowship, and witnessing. - Teach about sin and forgiveness (important issues!). (Mk 1- 3 presents these Christian basics being taught). - Resources: Ex. - Nav Press 2.7 Series books 1-3; Neil Anderson’s “Breaking Through to Spiritual Maturity;” LifeWays’ “Master Life Course;” Center for Church Based Training’s “Discovery Series” (4 books).
  16. 16. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 2: Come and Follow (Con’d.): (b) Step 2: Transition: - “Finding your Fit” piece. Help them discover their spiritual gifts. - Some may be gifted in the areas of worship, or missions, or teaching youth, or pastoral care, or preaching, etc. - If evangelism or perhaps leading small groups is not their area of giftedness, Search would then send them back to their respective church(es) to minister. - Parachurch is easier because it serves a niche. Churches have broader spectrums beyond just evangelism and small groups. - Resources: Example – Willow Creek’s “Network Spiritual Gift Inventory;” Crown Ministry course on stewardship; Bill Hybel’s “Becoming a Contagious Christian;” etc.
  17. 17. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 2: Come and Follow – Some characteristics/skills upon completing this phase: 1. Has learned the importance of submission to God and desires to submit. 2. Is beginning to recognize God at work. 3. Is learning the importance of developing godly inner character over the more external observations of God’s commands. 4. Is habitual in the spiritual fundamentals (Worship, Bible study, Scripture memory, prayer, fellowship, evangelism, stewardship of time, talents and money. 5. Is modeling his/her life after Christ. 6. Is, by the Spirit’s enablement, able to withstand hardship and opposition.
  18. 18. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 3: Come and Be With Me (Mk 3:13-14): - Primarily the “apprenticeship” phase. An essential ingredient in multiplying and expanding Christian ministry. - This phase lasts about 10 months to one-year. - Requires a high degree of commitment, assigned homework, and a responsible “closed” accountability group. - In this phase, a couple of things will happen: (1) Disciples deepen their faith. Move from the basics to a deeper spiritual understanding. Example - Christ deepened the disciple’s understanding of evangelism:  Step 1- Disciple understands the personal need for Christ (Jn 3 – Nicodemus; Jn 4 – woman at the well).
  19. 19. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Step 2 - Disciple begins to understands that he is part of God’s plan to offer salvation to others (Mk 1:17; Lk 5).  Step 3 - Disciple learns compassion for the lost. Begins to be trained to regularly and intentionally share his faith (Mt 9:36; 10).  Step 4 - Disciple lives out his faith in the workplace and begins to share his faith with “the lost” (Mt 28:19-20; Acts 1:8). This is the mission of Christ’s ministry! (2) Jesus intensifies the training of His disciples so that they will become disciple-makers. He sends them out specifically to minister (Mk 3:13-15). No bag, no food, no money (Lk 9:3). They’ve been watching Jesus. Now He sends them out to do what they have seen Him doing! - Resources: No new material. You begin teaching and sharing with others what you have learned!
  20. 20. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 3: Come and Be With Me – Some characteristics/skills upon completing this phase: 1. Has completed 2+ years of relevant training. 2. Is boldly declaring God’s truth to a lost world. 3. Continues to practice basic Christian habits while adding new ones. (ie. higher steps along The Spiritual Journey.) 4. Is able to discern between man’s version of God’s teaching and God’s authentic intent behind His Word. (double-minded). 5. Models servant leadership or servant followership according to giftedness. 6. Is bearing fruit (developing godly character and leading others to Christ).
  21. 21. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 4: Remain in Me (Jn 15): - This final phase of disciple-making is life long – not just a 2 to 3 year program. (Lifetime Accountability Groups!!) - Group interaction is necessary to optimize and stabilize spiritual growth. - This phase is characterized by on-going growth and effective service for Christ - evidence of Christian maturity. - The disciples are prepared to continue the ministry without the physical presence of Christ (Jn 16:7). The Holy Spirit came to replace and multiply Christ’s own efforts (Jn 14:15-19). - 2 Cor 5:18-21 describes how God reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation. Thus, we are to be His ambassadors to carry the message of reconciliation to the world. - Resources: Example – “Experiencing God,” and the Remain in Me School of Ministry.
  22. 22. New Testament Discipleship – Strategy Con’d.  Phase 4: Remain in Me – Some characteristics/skills upon completing this phase: 1. Continues to grow in godly character. 2. Continues to reproduce self in others. 3. Continues involvement in God’s work. 4. Continues to share Christ. 5. Is often sent into the world as God’s servant. 6. Leads or is involved in a LAG (ie. Lifetime Accountability Group) with loving accountability.
  23. 23. New Testament Discipleship – Final Comments  Keep in mind, that it is not our activity that produces fruit for Him; it’s our relationship with Him that does (Jn 15:5).  2 Tim 4:7 points out, that our faith in God is not proven by beginning the race, but by enduring to the finish.  Apostle Paul – a good model. We should live our lives in such a way that we can one day conclude as Paul did, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith!”  The “Steps to Maturity” depicting the discipleship process is summarized in the “Ladder” diagram on the next page.
  24. 24. New Testament Discipleship – Summary Distribute handout of Ladder.
  25. 25. Search Ministries Minnesota NEXT STEPS 1. Where do we go from here?
  26. 26. Search Ministries Minnesota Abbreviated Bibliography Berget, Ron, Pastor Chisago Lakes Evangelical Free Church, teaching material, 2000. Gilliam, Bob, T-Net Outreach Track, Evangelism Through The Local Church, Minneapolis: T-Net International, 1996. ________, T-Net Committed to the Development of Disciplemaking Congregations, The Disciplemaking Phases, Minneapolis: T-Net International, 1995. Johnson, Paul, ME-105, Evangelism For Discipleship, class handouts 2001. Mittleberg, Mark, Building a Contagious Church, Grand Rapids: Zondervan Pub., 2000. McCloskey, Mark, Tell It Often-Tell It Well, Nashville: Thomas Nelson Pub., 1995. Warren, Rick, The Purpose Driven Church, Grand Rapids: Zondervan Pub., 1995.
  27. 27. Search Ministries Minnesota The End. THANKS!

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