When Jesus was on this earth and engaging in his ministry he went around speaking to people, healing people and performing miracles. He preached a message of salvation. He taught repentance of sin. He taught that Jesus is the means to forgiveness of sins. He taught that Jesus is the way to salvation and freedom from our sin. Salvation, ie the forgiveness of our sin so that we have a reconciled relationship with God is the ultimate miracle of miracles. He commands those who believe in Jesus to be baptized with water and spirit in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit so that we receive the Holy Spirit which then dwells within us.
If this is salvation what is discipleship? I would like to think of salvation as the opening of the free gift offered to all. Discipleship is what you do with the gift. You can open the gift of salvation and just stick it in your pocket or put it up on your mantle or you take take the gift and do something with it. Discipleship is the essential tool needed to teach us Christians how to use the gift and then do something with the gift. If you have no discipleship you have the promise of salvation but then it’s like this amazing gift that is not being used. We need discipleship so that we can be followers of Jesus.
How does discipleship occur? Jesus is the ultimate example of discipleship for this is what he did with his followers. We also are discipled through other believers. But in today’s modern world we also have many resources that can be used on an individual level. We have access to sermons, books, devotionals, etc. And ultimately we have the greatest discipleship tool at our disposal, the Bible, God’s very words. This is why studying the Bible is so important. We do not study the Bible for our salvation. Salvation is a gift. We study the Bible because it ministers to us and is the greatest tool for discipleship. The body of Christ is also essential.
Have you open the free gift of salvation? If you have what are you doing with the gift? Are you engaging in discipleship? If not why not. Following Jesus is not always easy but it is the most rewarding way of life. It is our calling as Christians.