Faithlife Sermons

The Theology and Practicality of Our "Why?"

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Replicate by Robby Gallaty & Chris Swain
Biblical Slave Leadership by Daniel L. Anderson
This morning we learned that Paul was faithful because he knew his “Why?”
I never want you do something simply because it’s what Pastor wants you to do.
I don’t want it to be because its just what we do at our church.
I want you to know why.
1 Corinthians 15:58 ESV
58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
There is no shortage of scripture that directs what we are doing.
Scripture to support a disciple-making culture.
Scripture to support the equipping we are doing.
Scripture to support why we keep teaching this over and over.

Seven truths Jesus taught the disciples over and over found in John 17.

1. Vs 6: Revelation / Knowing God.

John 17:6 ESV
6 “I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word.
“manifest” - to be seen or to reveal, to make clear.
I have revealed your name.
I have thoroughly introduced them to you.
I have made it clear who you are.
“Your name” - your whole character!
The disciples were to thoroughly introduce people to God and help them continue to get to know Him.

2. Vs 8: Information / Teaching.

John 17:8 ESV
8 For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.
Jesus passed on what the Father had given Him.
The disciples received them.
Other Christians received them.
We then are to pass on what we have been taught.
Information is passed from one to the other.
Life on life is important!

3. Vs 9: Prayer

John 17:9 ESV
9 I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.
Jesus taught the disciples to pray.
Jesus taught us to pray.
We need to pray and teach others to pray.

4. Vs 12: Protection / Shepherding.

John 17:12 ESV
12 While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled.
I kept them.
I watched over them.
I guarded them.
Be on guard for them.
Hebrews 13:17 ESV
17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.
Hebrews 10:23–25 ESV
23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
If you are discipling someone you are shepherding them.

5. Vs 18: Mobilization / Go

John 17:18 ESV
18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.
We can’t get away from this!

6. Vs 19: Sanctification / Spiritual growth

John 17:19 ESV
19 And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.
Teaching or giving information without change is waste of time.
Matthew 28:20 ESV
20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
Observe is to keep or obey.
We continue to learn, therefore we become more obedient.
1 John 2:12–14 ESV
12 I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his name’s sake. 13 I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, children, because you know the Father. 14 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.
We see marks of growth.
Spiritual Infants
Spiritual Children
Spiritual Young men
Spiritual Fathers

7. Vs 22: Replication / Making disciples

John 17:22 ESV
22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one,
Passing on from one to another.
This is more than just information.
I am convinced that ultimately the reason Paul was ready and could confidently say he finished well was because he had replicated himself in others.
If you say that you are a follower of Christ but are not working to help other become followers of Christ, I don’t know what you are talking about. - Unknown

How does this compare with your current ministry involvement?

We have asked: “If the church disappeared today, who would miss it.
Maybe we should ask: “If God called you home, who would miss you?”

When we put all of this together we realize an important truth.

Preaching alone will not make disciples.

While it is probably the centerpiece, it is only a piece and it will not accomplish the Great Commission alone.
This is a big deal to me.
I had t realize that I was not living the Great Commission just because I was a pastor.
“Discipleship is more relational, more one on one… preaching to make disciples is like going to the nursery and spraying the crying babies with milk and saying you fed the kids.” - Avery Willis
In the Bible we see MANY forms of the ministry of the Word.
To try to put everything on preaching is to put too much weight and responsibility on it.

So how do we mobilize our church? But first, what kind of church are we?

There are five categories of churches.

(According to church planting organization Exponential.)

Category 1: A Subtracting Church

The church is in decline.
Many reasons can contribute to this.
No pastor.
Poor leadership.
Transient city.
Internal fighting.
The list goes on.
The church is in survival mode.
Just trying to hang on and keep the doors open.

Category 2: A Plateaued Church

This church fluctuates between decline and growth.
They can never constantly grow.
In these (Categories 1&2) churches the people say “come and stay. Please don’t leave. Things are going to get better.”
They desperately hope for visitors.
They desperately hope they stay.
They are often just going through the motions of church.
They are DOING church.

80% of American churches are in categories 1 & 2.

Category 3: An Addition Church

This is a church that is outwardly focused.
Trying to impact their communities.
Often multisite churches.
They grow by adding programs, Bible studies, and gathering times.
They are growing by adding people but they are often not teaching their people to multiply.

15%-20% of churches are in category 3.

Category 4: A Reproducing Church

These churches are set up to reproduce themselves and their ministries but often not multiply.
They are “planting” churches or opening other campuses.
They are backing them with their programs and their money.
Categories 3 & 4 say: “Come and see. We offer the best_______ (kid’s programs, men’s Bible study, music, you fill in the blank).”
This programatic thinking becomes something you can’t keep up with.
You keep them with what you win them with.
So you have to keep getting bigger and better.

4% of churches are in category 4.

Category 5: A multiplying Church.

These churches exist to raise up and send out disciples who make other disciples.
Viewing ministry through a Kingdom lens rather than a local lens.
This is a simple ministry plan.

.005% of churches are in category 5.

5/100’s percent.
We make church growth too complicated.
First - why do we want to grow?
Just growing a church for numbers is a waste of time.
Having a big church doesn’t address man’s problem.
Their heart.
Category 1 & 2 churches look at 3 & 4 churches and want what they have.
But they don’t have resources.
They don’t have people.
They don’t have money.
So… according to them, they don’t grow.
Matthew 16:18 ESV
18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.
What is Christ’s promise?
In what towns will He build His church?
In what cultures will He build His church?
If the church is universal, shouldn’t the process for growth be reproducible in any culture?
We have made church growth complicated and discipleship easy.
Join this group or take this class and you are good.
We got it backwards.

If we consider ourselves a multiplying church, where are you personally?

(Developed by Will Mancini)
Using the analogy of a cruise ship, he points out that there are four kinds of people in a local church.

Category 1: Stowaways

They attend the church but have not clarity and give no contribution.
They are along for the ride, but they haven’t bought into the vision and the mission.

Category 2: Pirates

Pirates are major contributors to the church.
They have not bought into the vision and mission of the church.
They can even use their platform to teach what they want in an unintentional or intentional attempt to hijack the church.
Ultimately, though contributors, they are working against the church.

Category 3: Passengers

People who have clarity of vision and mission.
However, they have yet to contribute in a significant way.
I call them cheerleaders.
They not opposed to what we are doing.
They probably even applaud what we are doing.
But they are simply watching.
We would say they have not FULLY bought in.
James 2 Faith without works

Category 4: Crew

They understand the vision and mission
They have bought in and are actively working towards it.
Ephesians 4:16 ESV
16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.
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