Disciples Or fans?

Kentucky Baptist Foundation
Kentucky Baptist Foundation Funding the Great Commission

By: Barry G. Allen- President & CEO
I was struck by Marty Comer’s commentary in the February 12 issues of the Western Recorder titled “Today’s church: A generation of fans, not disciples. His remarks were based upon the results of the George Barna research group’s study of how religion had changed over the 20-year period from 1991-2011 and a Boston University professor’s study of the religious literacy of his college students. Some of the findings were disturbing.

In addition to these findings, Comer referred to a statement one of his seminary professors made in the late 1980’s when the para-church movement was gaining influence, the electronic church was rising in prominence and certain television ministries were thriving. His professor observed those movements had “produced a generation of fans rather than disciples.” And, the church had become the victim of these “ministries of popularity.”

Jesus wants disciples, not fans. However, one of the disturbing findings in these studies reveals Jesus may have more fans than disciples. But Jesus commissioned the church to go and make disciples and to teach them to obey everything I have commanded you (Matthew 28:19-20). I agree with Henry Blackaby’s assessment of where we are as Southern Baptists and where we ought to go from here. He has said, “If Southern Baptists want to see a Great Commission Resurgence, we need to focus on the relationship between the disciples and the living Lord Jesus, not launch a new emphasis on evangelism. Southern Baptists have focused on evangelism and missed discipleship. The heart of the Great Commission and discipleship is to teach them to practice everything I have commanded you.”

It is in the context of a New Testament church that disciples are produced. My favorite mission statement for any church is: exalt the Savior, equip the saints and evangelize the sinner. Notice the order of these foundational pegs. Before a disciple of Jesus Christ can evangelize another, he or she must be equipped.

I contend at the heart of discipleship is financial stewardship for Kingdom advancement. For Kentucky Baptist churches to be successful in reaching Kentucky and the world for Christ, they must be equipped to equip their church members in the vital discipline of financial stewardship, which is why the KBF exists. Give us the opportunity to assist your church.

For more information, please call us at (502) 489-3533 or toll free in KY at 1-(866) 489-3533

The information in this article is provided as general information and is not intended as legal or tax advice. For advice and assistance in specific cases, you should seek the advice of an attorney or other professional adviser.

Kentucky Baptist Foundation

Kentucky Baptist Foundation

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