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Our Mission: Disciples Making Disciples - BO/MO

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Re-orient current congregants as to what we are about and why Bethany Church exists.

Notes
Transcript

Intro

Whatever else the world may know about Christians, most know this: Christians are suppose to go to church. Every Sunday, Christians gather together to worship God and spend time in “fellowship.” But why do we actually do this? What is the purpose of the Church then? Why is the Church here? What is Bethany Church here?
Whatever else we may know about Christians, we know this: Christians are suppose to go to church. Every Sunday, Christians gather together to worship God and spend time in “fellowship.” But why, why do we actually do this? What is the purpose of the Church then? Why is the Church here? What is the purpose of Bethany Church?
Every Sunday, Christians gather together to worship God and spend time in “fellowship.”
Some see the local church as existing primarily for evangelism, to draw unchurched people to the Christian faith. This view insists that the more we learn to think like people that don’t follow Jesus, the better we will do in drawing them to the church and, from the church, to Jesus.
The second common view is that the local church exists solely for discipleship. According to this view, the purpose of the church is to serve the needs of Christians. It’s in many ways a knee-jerk reaction against the first view. This view believes that, instead of putting all its energy into evangelism, the church should put all its energy into disciple. Instead of making decisions based on the preferences of unbelievers, the church should make decisions based on the preferences of Christians.
Both of these views have merit. However, under further examination each seem to be lacking on their own. If the church exists solely to draw the unchurched to Christ, it assumes that the unchurched know what they need. It assumes their spiritual desires are genuine and that by following them they will arrive at truth and salvation. If the church exists solely for discipleship, what about the needs of those outside the doors? It doesn’t sound like Jesus set-up the Church for it to be self-centered and “us” focused.
If the church exists solely for discipleship, what about the needs of those outside the doors? If the church exists to serve the needs of Christians, what about
That begs the question, [Slide - 2] More specifically, as a follower of Jesus, as a member of the body of Jesus Christ...
The first view, that the local church exists for seekers, assumes that unbelievers know what they need the most. It assumes that their spiritual desires are genuine and that by following them they will arrive at truth and salvation. And while Jesus did pay attention to the needs of the crowds of unbelievers, he was also sure to point out that they were unable to recognize their greatest need—namely, eternal life in him (). Their seeking was ultimately self-centered and led only to greater condemnation.
If the church exists to serve the needs of Christians, what about
A second common view is that the local church exists for discipleship. According to this view, the purpose of the church is to serve the needs of Christians. Many people push back against the seeker-sensitive church movement and declare, “The church exists for discipleship! It exists to serve and strengthen Christians!” They claim that instead of putting all its energy into evangelism, the church should put all its energy into discipleship. Instead of making decisions based on the preferences of unbelievers, the church should make decisions based on the preferences of Christians. In this way, building up the body of Christ becomes the ultimate purpose of the local church.
to draw unchurched people to the Christian faith.

Question: Why are we here?

Now, if we were to take a survey, I bet we would find that we are all here for a number of different reasons. Those reasons are affected by many factors - your stage of life, family structure, work - wherever you find yourself in your story.
Thankfully, Jesus gives us an answer to this question that transcends every on of our individual reasons why we might be here. It applies to every place where we might find ourselves in life. It unites us around a common purpose, a common goal, a common reason for being.
esus is very clear
Turn to Deuteronomy 6. As you do this let me read for you a conversation Jesus had with the religious leaders of His day.
However, what I would like to do this morning

I. We Are Called To Love God - Be Disciples

Matthew 22:34–40 TNIV
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Matthew 22:34–38 TNIV
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.

[Slide - 3]

I. We Are Here To Be Disciples

II. WE Are Here To Be Disciples

A. As A Disciple God Comes First

“Teacher, what is the greatest commandment in the law?”
When I hear “commandment in the law” I automatically think of the Ten Commandments
[Slide - 4] Jesus is going to quote the Shema

Deuteronomy 5:6-21

Basic confession of faith in Judaism
“To hear” in Hebrew is tantamount “to obey” - to hear God without putting into effect the command is not to hear him at all
Deuteronomy 6:4–8 TNIV
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.
Deuteronomy 6:4–5 TNIV
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
“Shema” = To Hear (Imperative)
Deuteronomy 6:1–4 TNIV
These are the commands, decrees and laws the Lord your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the Lord your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you. Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
Basic confession of faith in Judaism
Embodied the great principles of the law that outline the nature and character of God + spell-out Israel’s responsibilities to Him
[Slide - 5] “To hear” in Hebrew is tantamount “to obey”
Embodies the great principles of covenant relationship that outline the nature and character of God and spell out Israel’s responsibilities to him.
Basic confession of faith in Judaism
To hear God without putting into action what He says to do is to not hear Him at all.
“To hear” in Hebrew is tantamount “to obey” - to hear God without putting into effect the command is not to hear him at all
“To hear” in Hebrew is tantamount “to obey” - to hear God without putting into effect the command is not to hear him at all
Known as the “Shema” = “To hear” (Imperative)
Basic confession of faith in Judaism
Later Jewish scholars understood the role of the Shema to be the heart of the law
Embodied the great principles of the law that outline the nature and character of God + spell-out Israel’s responsibilities to Him
Later Jewish scholars understood the role of the Shema to be the heart of the law
Later Jewish scholars understood the role of the Shema to be the heart of the law
To this day the observant Jew will recite the Shema at least twice daily
Shema begins with a revolutionary statement

“The Lord our God, the LORD is one” = Jehovah He alone is God
10 Commandments
Israel’s neighbors were polytheistic (many gods)
In ancient Near East rarely were “gods” thought of as acting in harmony (i.e. Percy Jackson Chronicles)
Each god was unpredictable and morally capricious.
So a pagan worshiper could never be sure that his loyalty to one god would serve to protect him from the capricious wrath of another.
Israel’s monotheistic belief lifted them out of this insecurity since:
They only had to deal with one God
This God dealt with them by a consistent righteous standard (Immutability of God = God doesn’t change)
Malachi 3:6 TNIV
“I the Lord do not change. So you, the descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed.

B. For a Disciple Love For God Is Vital

Embodies the great principles of covenant relationship that outline the nature and character of God and spell out Israel’s responsibilities to him.
The 10 Commandments embodies the great principles of covenant relationship that outline the nature and character of God and spell out Israel’s responsibilities to him.
Basic confession of faith in Judaism
[Slide - 6]
Basic confession of faith in Judaism
Deuteronomy 6:4–5 TNIV
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
“To hear” in Hebrew is tantamount “to obey” - to hear God without putting into effect the command is not to hear him at all
“Love” = Not so much a feeling or an emotion - obedience is considered love [Slide - 7]
Not so much emotive or sensual in its connotation (not excluded in those respects), but it is of the nature of obligation, of legal demand.
Love is of the nature of obligation, of legal demand
Obedience is considered love
To love God is to choose Him for an intimate relationship and to obey His commands
To this day the observant Jew will recite the Shema at least twice daily
Love is to be:
Whole hearted - 100% devotion
Love God with all essence and expression
Pervade every aspect of a disciples being and life (will, responsibilities, capacities) - every part of ourselves
To pervade every aspect of an Israelite’s being and life (soul and strength)
Such a command leads us to the Gospel, our need to be justified by faith and God’s power to enable us to love Him in this way (cf. )

C. For a Disciple God Must Be Our Focus

Galatians 3:24 TNIV
So the law was put in charge of us until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.
Strength - Physical side with all functions and capacities
Known as the “Shema” = “To hear” (after 1st word of v. 4 - the imperative)
Summary - To love God as it commands is to place oneself within the orbit of his saving grace because the Shema, the heart and core fo the Old Testament law, was designed, as Paul said, to be “put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith” ()
“One God” - He alone is God (three persons)
Known as the “Shema” = “To hear” (after 1st word of v. 4 - the imperative)
[Slide - 8]

The Israelites could therefore have a sense of security that was totally impossible for their polytheistic neighbors. The “gods” of the ancient Near East rarely were thought of as acting in harmony. Each god was unpredictable and morally capricious. So a pagan worshiper could never be sure that his loyalty to one god would serve to protect him from the capricious wrath of another. The monotheistic doctrine of the Israelites lifted them out of this insecurity since they had to deal with only one God, who dealt with them by a revealed consistent righteous standard.

Deuteronomy 6:6–8 TNIV
These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.

II.

B. Significance

Not so much emotive or sensual in its connotation (not excluded in those respects), but it is of the nature of obligation, of legal demand.
Simply - To choose Him for an intimate relationship and to obey His commands
Love is to be whole hearted (heart) - mind or rational part of humankind
Love God with all essence and expression
To pervade every aspect of an Israelite’s being and life (soul and strength)
Soul - invisible part of the individual, including the will and responsibilities
Strength - Physical side with all functions and capacities
Summary - To love God as it commands is to place oneself within the orbit of his saving grace because the Shema, the heart and core fo the Old Testament law, was designed, as Paul said, to be “put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith” (Gal. 3:24)
For the love of God to be the right kind, the commands of God must be laid to heart
He must be the constant subject of our thought and conversation
Doing this enables us to understand God’s Word and to apply it correctly
vs. 6-9)
Responsible to meditate on these commands, to keep them in their hearts. This enabled them to understand the law and to apply it correctly.
It is then and only then the parents are in a position to impress them on their children’s hearts also [Slide - 9]
The best thing for the discipleship of our children are parents who are discipled well
We believe the best thing for the discipleship of our children are 1) parents who are discipled wel
The moral and biblical education of the children was accomplished best not in a formal teaching period each day but when the parents, out of concern for their own lives as well as their children’s, made God and His Word the natural topic of conversation which might occur anywhere and anytime during the day.
Quote: Moral and biblical education of the children was accomplished best not in a formal teaching period each day but when the parents, out of concern for their own lives as well as their children’s, made God and His Word the natural topic of conversation which might occur anywhere and anytime during the day.
Disciple - Someone who is growing to love God and love others by putting God’s truth into action

III. As A Disciple The Church Is Key

Discipleship is inherently relational
Deuteronomy 6:4 TNIV
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
“Hear, O Israel” - Plural
Plurality
“Hear, O Israel” - Covenant was made with the nation as a whole collectively, so the nation must as a unified community give heed to the command of the Lord.
“Our God”
Transition:
The Covenant God made with Israel was made with the nation as a collective
The nation must, as a unified community, obey the command of the Lord
God’s judgment and blessings came upon Israel as a nation, as a body, as a covenant people
How? They lived together as a community, they did life together
Transition: As we grow as a disciple, what happens is that we naturally become more like Jesus and we begin to desire to Make Disciples. [Slide - 10] For...

II. We Are Here To Make Disciples

[Slide - 11]
Matthew 22:39–40 TNIV
And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

A. God Comes First, Neighbors Come Next

What is Jesus quoting?

The Shema - Basic confession of faith in Judaism
Jesus puts this commandment on par with our loving our neighbors
Notice he says that on these two commands hang all the law and the prophets
on par with the commandment contained in and observes that on these two commands hang all the law and the prophets
Ten Commandments
4 Towards God (vertical - list)
6 Towards Others (horizontal - list)
This is what it means to be a disciple of Jesus
[Slide - 12] Disciple - Someone who is growing to love God and others by putting God’s truth into practice.
How can we love our neighbor? Listen to my sermon ;)
Help them grow in their relationship with Christ

B. It’s Only Natural

Share with them the Gospel
[Slide - 13]
Matthew 28:18–20 TNIV
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
This is what we call the Great Commission
Notice it’s not a dialogue. The focus is all upon Jesus.
Notice that this Great Commission is not a dialogue. The focus is all upon Jesus. In this Great Commission, Jesus is the star. Jesus is the very central part of the Great Commission.
Jesus is telling His disciples to go to the entire known world and tell others to make disciples of all peoples - work peoples, friend peoples, family peoples, etc; in order to do so they must tell others about the good news of Jesus death, burial and resurrection
Jesus is telling His disciples to go to the entire known world and make disciples of other people
Also, notice that nowhere in the NT or the Bible is this called a Great Commission, we call it the Great Commission.
It’s great in its scope. It’s great in it’s significance. It’s weighty in what it is calling us to do.
The Bible doesn’t call it the Great Commission because what Christ calls us to do is really quite ordinary, or at least it ought to be ordinary.
[Slide - 14]
Every disciple must assume full responsibility for being and making self-initiating, reproducing, fully devoted disciples
Matthew 28:19 KJV 1900
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
How to make a disciple (discipleship - the process of growing into Christ-like maturity)
Discipleship is inherently relational
Created for connection - We live life together as a church connected to one another through deep and enduring relationships.
Because God is inherently relational
Serve: Saved to serve - We humble ourselves before God and others by serving one another like Jesus did.
Word - Gospel
Share - Tell others about Jesus
Matthew 28:19 KJV 1900
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Connect: Created for connection - We must live life together as a church connected to one another through deep and enduring relationships.
Discipleship is inherently relational
Because God is inherently relational
Transition: [Slide - 15] You might say, yah, well I could never do that!
It’s great in its scope. It’s great in it’s significance. It’s weighty in what it is calling us to do.
[Slide - 12] But the Bible doesn’t call it the Great Commission because what Christ calls us to do is really quite ordinary, or at least it ought to be ordinary.

III. Our Mission Is A Together Mission

A. Together

Discipleship is inherently relational
[Slide - 16]
Deuteronomy 6:4 TNIV
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.
“Hear, O Israel” - Plural
“Our God”
The Covenant God made with Israel was made with the nation as a collective
The nation must, as a unified community, obey the command of the Lord
God’s judgment and blessings came upon Israel as a nation, as a body, as a covenant people
Church - Christ’s mission for the body
[Slide - 16]
Matthew 28:19 KJV 1900
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
“Ye” = Plural ‘you’

B. Discipleship Is Inherently Relational

Because God is inherently relational
We are created for connection
We must live life together as a church connected to one another through deep and enduring relationships.

Conclusion

For it is only through our working together, bearing one another’s burdens, can we be Disciples who Make Disciples.
Because God is
Every disciple must assume full responsibility for being and making self-initiating, reproducing, fully devoted disciples
[Slide - 18]
My Faith Journey
First Steps
Getting Started
Bible
Support
Exploring
Questions
Doubts
Next Steps
Be One
Core
Electives
Make One
Connect
Serve
It’s great in its scope. It’s great in it’s significance. It’s weighty in what it is calling us to do.
It’s great in its scope. It’s great in it’s significance. It’s weighty in what it is calling us to do.
[Slide - 12] But the Bible doesn’t call it the Great Commission because what Christ calls us to do is really quite ordinary, or at least it ought to be ordinary.
[Slide - 12] But the Bible doesn’t call it the Great Commission because what Christ calls us to do is really quite ordinary, or at least it ought to be ordinary.
It ought to be the general practice of every Christian and every church in all the world—doing what we as the church are called to do b/c God has picked us to share this message.
It ought to be the general practice of every Christian and every church in all the world—doing what we as the church are called to do b/c God has picked us to share this message.
Matthew 28:19 KJV 1900
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
Matthew 28:18 KJV 1900
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
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