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Sticking Points

4 Chair Discipling  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Slide #1
I know what this is like.
Slide #2-5
Mark 4:3–9 ESV
“Listen! Behold, a sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seed fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured it. Other seed fell on rocky ground, where it did not have much soil, and immediately it sprang up, since it had no depth of soil. And when the sun rose, it was scorched, and since it had no root, it withered away. Other seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it, and it yielded no grain. And other seeds fell into good soil and produced grain, growing up and increasing and yielding thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.” And he said, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

This is God’s Word for God’s people, hear it and believe.

Pray
Slide #6
As we are reaching out to people in Chair 1 and helping them move to Chair 2 and then Chair 3 and hopefully to Chair 4 we need to be aware of the sticking points and where trouble may arise.
Slide #7
Like a rally car driver, we must study the course that we are going to take and be aware of the most dangerous obstacles that are before us.
Slide #8
This parable from the addresses several of these sticky points that we will face as we make disciples.

Seed Sown Along the Path

The path is hard and rocky. There is little hope for a fruitful harvest. The soil is hard, uncultivated, and does not receive the outside seed.
Because of the condition of the path, the birds come along and steal the seed.
Slide #10
There are people in the world who are carrying around a hard heart. Nothing can penetrate it
Slide #11
Luke 8:12 ESV
The ones along the path are those who have heard; then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved.
Slide 12
This is a Chair 1 person who hears the Word but their heart is so hard it will not receive it.
We have all experienced this type of person, many times they are family members.
As a result of their hardened hearts, they are stuck in Chair 1 and will never move beyond it.

So what do we do?

Slide #13
Like any hard soil, it must be cultivated. It must be broken up. This is hard work. It takes time and energy.
Breaking up the hard soil takes building friendships and relationships. It takes a lot of prayer. It takes removing the the rocks and carefully sowing the seed.
Jesus became a “friend of sinners” and we need to do the same.
Slide #14
Jesus became a “friend of sinners” and we need to do the same. Sometimes the birds will come and take away the seed, but we need to be persistent and replant the seed.
Sometimes the birds will come and take away the seed, but we need to be persistent and replant the seed. And keep praying!
This will take time, effort, and a lot of prayer to move people from Chair 1 to Chair 2.

Seed Sown on Rocky Places

Slide #15
In order for seed to germinate it needs to put its roots down in order to gather nutrients from the soil.
Slide #16
Colossians 2:6–7 ESV
Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
Many people will receive the word with joy and seemingly accept Christ, but when the going gets tough, they will quickly fall away.
Or when the truth of Christ brings them temporary blessings or relief, they are content to stay in Chair 2 and not seek more truth.
Slide #17
Colossians 2:7 ESV
rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.
Trouble and persecution will come; it is not a matter of “if” but “when.” But their roots are not sufficient for continued growth. They have stopped looking for the truth that develops deeper roots.
For those in Chair 2, trouble and persecution will come; it is not a matter of “if” but “when”
Slide #18
If a person does not have sufficient roots they will never reach the fruit-bearing stage. And this is what we need to help them do, get deep rooted in Jesus. They need to keep seeking the truth. If they seek it, they will find it.
At this point we are trying to help the new believer bear fruit within themselves.
And what is that fruit?
Slide #19
Galatians 5:22–23 ESV
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5 ESV
1 For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. 2 Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you. 3 I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law. 4 You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace. 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love. 7 You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? 8 This persuasion is not from him who calls you. 9 A little leaven leavens the whole lump. 10 I have confidence in the Lord that you will take no other view, and the one who is troubling you will bear the penalty, whoever he is. 11 But if I, brothers, still preach circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed. 12 I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves! 13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another. 16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
How do we help new believers develop deep roots.
Slide #20
When Beth and I plant a new plant we many times will use a root stimulator to help the roots “take root.”

We need to be a

Spiritual Root Stimulator

Spiritual Root Stimulator

Slide #21

Discuss

Take your new Christ-follower and study this parable of the soils.
Ask them how much fruit they want to bear.
Discuss what keeps people from growing deep roots.
Share some of the issues you faced as you began to grow in the Word and began to share your faith.
Allow your disciple to learn from you.
Slide #22

Study

Spend time looking at who they are in Christ and what Jesus has done for them.
Look at and .
Help your disciples put their roots down deep
Slide #23

Trust

Teach them what it means to live by the power of the Spirit, and how if we try to live by our own strength we will fail.
Teach them to know how to deal with sin immediately and to walk by the Spirit’s power.
Slide#24

Allow

Allow them the freedom to fail. Don’t push them too hard or expect maturity too soon.
As Spiritual parents we need to allow our Spiritual children to mature in their own appropriate time fram.
Slide#25

Pray

Just like Paul, we must pray for new Christians to
Slide #26
Ephesians 1:18 ESV
having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints,
Slide #27
Knowing Christ and what He has done for us should always be the basis of our identity. As we mature, the reality of our identity in Christ will be revealed to us and set into us.
It is this root system that will sustain us.

Seed Sown Among Thorns

Slide #28
When we make it to Chair 3 we will encounter at least three sticking points.
Slide #28
In the parable we see that Jesus gives names to these sticking points....worries, deceitful wealth, and desire for other things.
The seed of the Gospel has germinated and it begins to grow. We have the hope of fruitfulness, but there is something that is keeping it from getting there.
Slide #29
Just like thorns, worries, wealth, and wants can choke out fruitfulness.
We all face worries. We all face the deceitfulness of wealth, especially in today’s materialistic world. And we all have desires in our lives.
But the question is how do we keep them from chocking us out?
Slide#30

Discuss

We cannot address a problem is we are not willing to talk about it. We need to take time to discuss how each of these challenges affect us and those we are discipling. We must know ourselves we must know those we are discipling if we are going to overcome these sticking points.
Slide #31

Discern

We have to ask ourselves how these issues are working out in our lives? Beware of the blind spots in our own lives. We need others to help us see what we cannot see or we will have a hard time helping others.
Slide #32

Destroy

We need to aggressively tackle any of these “thorns” that can choke out fruitfulness. 3 out of 4 people in this parable do not make it to fruitfulness. I am afraid that we do not take seriously the issues that Jesus clearly warned us about - worries, wealth, and wants.
Slide #33

Demand

We all need to be accountable. We need people around us that will be open and honest about any issues they see in our lives.
Demand accountability for yourself and those you are discipling.
All three of these sticking points can easily revolve around money, so demand accountability on tithing first and foremost as this is God’s way of helping us keep these issues in check.
Failure to be willing to tithe is usually a clear indicator that these issues have taken root in a person’ life.
Slide #34
I want to stop here and say that if we take this parable at face value then 75 percent of the people who begin the disciple-making journey never move into Chair 3 or Chair 4.
This is why Jesus said:
Slide #35
Matthew 9:37 ESV
Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few;
The “laborers” are Chair 3 and Chair 4 Christians.
And why our response should be:
Slide #36
Matthew 9:38 ESV
therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

Seed Sown On Good Soil

This is Chair 4.
Slide #37
Jesus says that this seed produces a crop - some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown.
This is where we should all be.
The multiplication of disciples is fully dependent on you and I becoming fruitful disciples ourselves and helping others to do the same.
Paul gives us a good picture of what it takes to help others become fruitful.
Slide #38-41
1 Thessalonians 2:7–12 ESV
But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us. For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. You are witnesses, and God also, how holy and righteous and blameless was our conduct toward you believers. For you know how, like a father with his children, we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.
The question is do you want to bear fruit and how fruitful do you want to be?
1 Thessalonians 2:7–11 ESV
But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us. For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. You are witnesses, and God also, how holy and righteous and blameless was our conduct toward you believers. For you know how, like a father with his children,
Slide #42
I want Jesus to tell me “well done good and faithful servant.” I hope you do too. In order for us to hear those words we cannot stay stuck in Chair 2. We might hear these words if we are in Chair 3 and have eliminated the thorns in our lives, but to be certain it will be the Chair 4 person who is the faithful servant.
The question is how fruitful do you want to be? I want Jesus to tell me “well done good and faithful servant.” I hope you do too. In order for us to hear those words we cannot stay stuck in Chair 2. We might hear them if we are in Chair 3, but to certain it will be the Chair 4 person who is the faithful servant.
Let’s pray
1 Thessalonians 2:7–12 ESV
But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us. For you remember, brothers, our labor and toil: we worked night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, while we proclaimed to you the gospel of God. You are witnesses, and God also, how holy and righteous and blameless was our conduct toward you believers. For you know how, like a father with his children, we exhorted each one of you and encouraged you and charged you to walk in a manner worthy of God, who calls you into his own kingdom and glory.
1 Thessa
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