Managing the Discipleship Program

Session 6 – Managing The Discipleship Program

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Session 5

We are currently discussing discipleship, church growth, and church planting. Today is the last session of the series. It was all about exploring the ways and means that all churches can follow to counteract new challenges in life like COVID-19, financial complications, and many other challenges, to expand and to advance their churches and the kingdom of God, despite all these challenges.

In the previous sessions, we discussed how to identify our focus and purpose as a congregation and as church leaders. We need to determine what we are required to do before we can decide on the strategy that we should follow. We also discussed the Luke 10 method of evangelism which is all about finding a man of peace, making him and this family and friends disciples of Christ whilst we are practically equipping the previous outreach’s new converts. We have seen that success is all about the way that the new converts are utilized. We also discussed the need for church leaders to make the necessary changes to enable leaders and denominations and congregations to accommodate as many people as possible, even people who do not necessarily agree with their doctrines and the way that they do church.

This is all about the need for more leniency when it comes to Christian doctrines and practices which were previously not accepted in particular denominations. It already happens in many churches and denominations but it is not yet officially approved, which complicates things and causes a lot of hindrances in the body of Christ. Many ministers know that some of their members believe differently than they teach and they have accepted that. In many denominations already, people who believe differently are all serving God in the same congregation and there is nothing wrong with that. This is a reality. More and more church leaders understand that the more lenient they are the more people they can accommodate.

It is not a case of allowing outrageous doctrines and practices. It is allowing people to make choices and then allowing them to live out their faith. We have seen that particular denominations who have initially opposed Pentecostalism have decided to embrace Pentecostalism. We have seen denominations who were not willing to go that far decided to at least accept people within their ranks to practice Pentecostalism. These denominations benefited tremendously by being more lenient and more tolerant in this regard. They took note of the pros and cons and they convinced their leaders and members to be more lenient and more tolerant with regards to things previously opposed. Pentecostalism does not damage the church and it does offer the laborers the opportunity to preach a gospel of hope and deliverance. We have discussed this aspect in Session 3 and we did explain the benefits that this has. It is for this reason that Pentecostalism is the fastest-growing Christian movement in the world and its popularity is increasing tremendously every day. It is because of this that the denominations that I mentioned have decided to become Pentecostal or to at least allow it to function within their structures.

We also analyzed and discussed the reasons why new converts are a powerful resource in the hands of God and in the hands of church leaders? We discussed the ways and means how we as church leaders can utilize the laborers to their maximum potential and how we hinder or block this amazing resource?

We also analyzed and discussed the power of the baptisms. We have seen that the water baptism for the remission of sin is a powerful and life-changing experience in the life of all Christians. It puts new converts on a different path. We have also seen that true evangelism and fulfilling the great commission like God wants us to, cannot be done successfully without us being baptized in the Spirit of God. There is just no power to preach the gospel of Christ and to heal the sick and to cast out demons and to raise the dead and to disciple new converts successfully if we are not baptized in the Holy Spirit. All these things are the basic and core elements of salvation. By ignoring the water baptism for the remission of sin and the baptism in the Holy Spirit, we disqualified a huge portion of the gospel. In such case we do not preach the full gospel of Christ.

See also
The Power Of The Laborers

When we do this we actually tell people that they will have to suffer physically, emotionally, socially and in all other areas of life, and in their soul and personal circumstances and in life but, that they must just hold fast onto their faith and salvation because they will end up in heaven when they die. This is not the gospel of Christ. The gospel of Christ and the price that Jesus Christ has paid gave us full redemption, body, soul and spirit. It has made full restoration a guaranteed reality in our lives.

In this session, we are going to look at a very important aspect of church growth and expansion and that is to manage, evaluate and maintain the evangelism strategy. We need to keep focused and to stay on the right path. If you as church leader has implemented everything that I suggested in this series, you have done well. You have made it possible for your congregation to grow and to expand tremendously. You have made it possible for your members to grow spiritually and to develop spiritually. They will be able to fulfill the great commission like God wants them to. You have given them the opportunity to preach the full gospel of Christ. You have made it possible for them to minister the full gospel of Christ unto people. Because of your actions, people are now able to go out and preach a message of hope and deliverance.

This is great but this needs to be maintained. Very soon after church leaders have implemented the strategy that we recommended in this series, some people will attempt to revert to the old ways of doing things. Now how on earth is that possible, even when these people are fully aware of the benefits and even though they see the church grow and expand right in front of their very eyes? It happens because of a lot of reasons.

It happens because people are lazy. They do not want to go out to preach the gospel of Christ. They want to sit in the pews and listen to a sermon and then go home to read the Sunday newspaper. Some people do not want to get involved with other people. They do not want to hear the struggles and hardships of other people. It happens because some people attracted a lot of attention onto themselves through the old system and the new system has put a stop to that. Such people are not in the limelight anymore. They miss that. They are not popular anymore because the focus has shifted on the great commission and everybody enjoys equal attention or equal lack of attention. All attention is now on the work of the ministry and not on people.

So although the majority of people in a congregation may be very excited and satisfied with the new way of doing things, almost every church leader will have to deal with the few people who want to put a stop to all this. To them, the benefits do not match up to their losses. Some of them do not care whether the kingdom of God benefits or whether the congregation benefits. Some do not even care whether the church expands or not. They have lost something precious to them and they are not happy with the new situation in church. People are selfish and they will look for all sorts of reasons to motivate the church leaders to revert to the old system.

See also
Home Church Presentation Resources - 1

This is when church leaders will have to stand strong. Do not allow these selfish people to destroy the work of the ministry in your congregation. Do not allow them to hinder the gospel. You just keep everything in place and keep motivating them in a positive and loving spirit. Leave it in the hands of God. If some of them leave, let them leave. Do not push them away. Keep the door open for them but do not allow them to have their way. Try to get them involved in the outreaches and try to motivate them.

The ball is in their court. It is up to them to decide whether they are going to accept the new strategy or not but they should know that acceptance is the only option for them. They should know that the congregation will not revert to the old system. As soon as this message is clear, many of them will cave and they will accept the situation. A word of caution though, from the start, never give such people the slightest indication that reverting to the old system is a possibility. That could give them the hope they needed and it might motivate them to put up a fight and that is something that you want to prevent.

When any incident comes up which puts the strategy in a bad light, deal with it immediately. Guide and counsel those who caused the incident and let them carry on with the work of the ministry immediately. Never stop the program or even pause the program. This will be a mistake. You just keep everything going and do whatever you can to equip and develop the members of the congregation as best as you can. Fulfilling the great commission should always be the highest priority in any congregation.

One way that church leaders can prevent undesired hiccups and incidents is to go out with the teams regularly. Make sure that everything is carried out the way that Jesus Christ instructed us to. Church leaders should regularly go out with the different teams during outreaches, sometimes as an observer and sometimes as the person who oversees the outreach. You do need to keep track of the actions and methods and performances of all your senior members and the team members that goes out to fulfill the great commission. The fact that you are there with them will cause them to respect you and it will also motivate them to carry on and to do whatever is expected from them.

A few things that you need to check are the following:

Always make sure that new converts are utilized and developed immediately.

Always make sure that before they do, that they were trained on the basic gospel by utilizing the training manual that I have mentioned in a previous session. This training manual, titled, “The Gospel of Jesus Christ: Salvation and Restoration” is available for FREE on the Great Commission Resources website as well as my website, ASR Martins Ministries.

Make sure that new converts and the senior members, have been trained by utilizing this series. It is available on the Great Commission Resources website as well as my website, ASR Ministries Ministries

Keep record of all outreaches. Implement a register and ask all members to register the outreaches. The following details should be recorded: The names of the two senior members who have overseen the outreach. The names of new converts or other church members who have accompanied them. The date and time started and completed. The area they visited. The details of the man of peace that they have found and ministered onto. The details of new converts that were led to Christ during the outreach. Any important details about the outreach and events in such a person’s house. Any other detail or information that the overseers feels you should know about like undesired incidents and so on.

See also
Disciple Making Tools

As church leader, you should be responsible for all followup actions. You need to check the register every morning and you need to arrange whatever needs to be arranged based on what was recorded in the register the day before.

For instance, any undesired incident should be addressed immediately. Call all the seniors involved and find out what happened. Call some of the other church members who accompanied the seniors to make sure you understand exactly what happened. Address the issue immediately to counter any further negative repercussions. Do not pause or stop the outreaches. Just solve the undesired event or issue and take the necessary steps to prevent it from happening again. All of us are always learning and improving ourselves and nobody is perfect. Incidents will happen and that is not a big issue. As long as it is addressed.

Record the names and addresses of new converts and make sure that training sessions are scheduled and that they are scheduled to be part of new outreaches as soon as they have completed the theoretical training.

As church leader you should also be kept up to date with the progress of all members in the congregation. Make sure you know who are not taking part in the outreaches, who did not complete any training and who is completely inactive. Although the great commission is an instruction, there may be valid reasons why people are not partaking. We should not force people to fulfill the great commission but we should at least try to motivate them and encourage them to get involved. Sometimes people just need a bit of motivation and personal assistance to get them started.

As you can see, we need to manage the evangelism program in the church and we have to be committed to make sure that everything stays on track. We cannot relax and let everybody do whatever they want to do whenever they want to do it. Of course we want to allow the members of the congregation to go out when they want to but there needs to be a little bit of control just to address undesired deviations. It is for this reason that we need to be on top of things. Not to control people but to prevent undesired events, situations and results. I believe that church leaders should never control the work of the ministry but they should prevent undesired situations. They should keep an eye on everything.

Church leaders should not delegate this aspect of their duties or function. You should personally check the things that I mentioned and you should personally make sure that everything is addressed appropriately, even if you use other people to help you with it. Take stock, evaluate and adjust but never pause and never stop.

What should you as church leader do when you experience strife and dissension among members?

Teach them the power of consensus. Teach the members of your congregation that consensus is always possible. Arrange meetings and allow the members involved to talk to each other and to reach consensus. Remember, consensus is a win-win situation. There is no loser when consensus is reached. There is a loser when you as church leader take the side of one person over another or one group of people over another. The situation might be addressed but there may be a feeling of unfairness and dissatisfaction if a situation was resolved in another way other than reaching consensus.

What should you do when you notice that your members are struggling with the new strategy? Do not hesitate to ask for assistance. Contact any member of the Great Commission Resources Support Team or complete the official Contact Form on the Contact Us page.

See also
Home Church Presentation Resources - 2

When it comes to the midweek gatherings, never pause or stop it. This will turn out to be a great blessing. Not only does it promote the shared community life of the congregation, it also helps the members to look after each other and help each other and pray for each other and most importantly, support each other. It can also be a very important tool during times like we are now experiencing with the COVID-19 lock-down restrictions. In some cases or phases, the church expansion outreaches and the midweek gatherings can proceed as normal when the Sunday services cannot take place anymore. This results in two-thirds of church activities still taking place as usual. This puts less strain on the church in general, even financially because two representatives at each midweek gathering can take up the offerings and pay it into the church’s bank account.

During times that the midweek gatherings and outreaches cannot take place, then churches should revert to Whats-app video calls, Zoom meetings, Microsoft teams, Google hangouts, Cisco webex meetings, Skype, Free conference, Jitsi and many other conference facilities out there on the web that can be used for this purpose.

So even with the midweek gatherings, deal with undesired events and incidents immediately. Sort it out just as you did with incidents that occur during outreaches and remember, never stop or pause the midweek gatherings.

COVID-19 has taught us all a very important lesson. It taught us that everything in life is very fragile. Even the church and even the children of God. We are completely dependent on God and his grace. He is the only one that can maintain us. We cannot rely on anything but God.

I think God has used this pandemic to wake us up a bit. The world is changing and the church needs to change as well. If we are not going to adapt, we are not going to make it. I am referring to churches. We will close our doors and the members of our congregations will have to join other congregations that can still keep their head above water.

God has showed me that He is not happy with a lot of things in the church. He has showed me in a dream that He is going to do something that will cause people not to find the organized church appealing anymore. I do not know what it is. He showed me this a few years ago. It might be COVID-19, I do not know. Maybe it is still ahead of us. What I do know is that, in the dream, the church leaders were absolutely shocked. I could not believe my eyes when I saw the panic-stricken pastors and other church leaders running around in circles trying to find out what happened. It was not a good sight to see. I believe God has given me ways and means to help church leaders to prevent this from happening in their congregations. If we focus on the right things, God will honor our decisions and He will work with us. Those things are the things that I have shared with you in this series.

This series was all about a program that will help congregations expand. Maybe for many congregations, this program might be more than that. Maybe this program might be the very thing that saves them from closing their doors. I do not know. All I know is that God dealt with me about these things in an urgent way. I knew from the start that this might be the only chance that many congregations might have to survive.

Just to recap what we have discussed in this series, the first session was all about the need and the right way that congregations should determine their purpose. What is church all about? What do we have to do to please God? What should our goals be? Are we on the right path? Are we focusing on the right things? Is our priorities right?

See also
The Power Of The Baptisms

We all know that the focus in most churches, even in house churches, is not what it is supposed to be. So God is already not happy just because of us not doing what we are supposed to do. Let alone how He feels about what we are actually doing. I won’t even go there.

We have seen that the focus should be on the great commission, the way that Jesus Christ instructed us to fulfill it, not the way that we want to fulfill it. We have seen that we need to address and accommodate the needs of the congregation. We need to give them a platform that will empower them to minister unto each other, help each other and support each other and more importantly, empower them to fulfill the great commission. This gives the members of the congregation a ministry. The old system took that away from them. That ministry is called the work of the ministry. The five-fold ministry is to equip the church for the work of the ministry. They need to develop and assist the church so that they can grow spiritually so that they can do the work of the ministry. This is Biblical.

In session two we have discussed the Luke 10 method of evangelism. Luke 10 describes the great commission in detail. It is all about finding a man of peace somewhere in a street or park or market place, healing him and delivering him from bondage, preaching the gospel of Christ to him, visiting his family in his house, healing and delivering them, leading them to Christ by baptizing them all in water for the remission of sin, laying hands on them to receive the baptism in the Holy Spirit, incorporating them in the church, incorporating them in the midweek gatherings, putting them trough a great commission preparation course, sending them out with the next outreach, utilizing them as seniors to oversee a team within two or three months and then repeating the whole process all over again.

This is the Biblical method of evangelism. This is the great commission in its purest form.

Session 3 was a discussion on changes made by prominent denominations in the past. Many people are under the impression that the organized church cannot change. They think that it is even impossible for God to change the church and to develop the church. That is why nobody is willing to promote change or to ask for change. Everybody just accepts the status quo and so everybody is just sitting there and accept their fate. This is not supposed to be like this.

Anything and everything in life can change. Change is always possible. God has been pleading with us to change. He has been for decades. I think God is reaching the point where He will make sure that we are put in positions that will force us to change if we don’t do it by ourselves.

We have seen that in the past, whole denominations has made major and significant changes. It can happen again. We have seen one denomination become a Pentecostal church. We have recently seen another denomination accepting people to function in the gifts of the Spirit withing their ranks. Something that they did not allow in the past. So yes, change is always possible. People may ask, “Why do we have to change?” We have to change because we are not in the will of God. We need to change because God is progressively developing his church. He is always the same and always complete and perfect. We are not perfect. We need to work on ourselves and we need to allow God to perfect us and improve us and develop us. That is why we need change.

When Jesus Christ planted his church, God started the process. That was only the start. Unfortunately the process almost immediately took a nosedive. Instead of the church going up it went down almost immediately. Through the years the church deteriorated awfully. However, God was never going to give up on us. He was never going to leave us in the bad condition that we have put ourselves. He started the reformation through Martin Luther and He is still not finished with us.

See also
Considering Much Needed Change

The reality is, the church is still in a very bad condition. We are so far from what God wants us to be. It is unbelievable. How on earth is it possible that after two thousand years, we have progressed so little? It is mind-boggling! We have slipped up big-time through the years and God is not happy with this. He started something early in 2016 that will change all this. Or at least many of us became aware of it because this is when we started noticing that major changes are coming.

God is busy changing a lot of things in the world and He needs our help to do that. We are his ambassadors and we are the instruments of excellence in his hands that He needs to do that.

So it is time that we all rise to the occasion and do what needs to be done. Let us be a light in these dark times. Let us shine the light of Christ and let us be ready to give people to eat the word of God, the bread of life. Let us use this opportunity to change the world. The reality is that COVID-19 is changing the world rapidly every day. We need to help change it for the better. Let us show the world that there is a better way. A divine way of living. We have the opportunity now to make a huge difference in people’s lives and to change the direction of the world.

The world has indeed been under the power of satan during the past ten years. Worldwide, things have deteriorated quite a lot under the reign of corrupt and evil politicians. That is why God had to intervene. He raised men and women from all walks of life and in all spheres of influence to help him with this. God has appointed them and He has put them in positions that made it possible for him to change many bad situations in the world. Donald Trump and thousands of other politicians successfully played their part during the past four years. Apart from politicians, God used his children in many areas and spheres of life to change the world.

As a result of that, a lot of good things were restored. A lot of wonderful things happened during the past four years. The caliphate that ISIS proclaimed in 2014 was defeated after they caused so much harm in the lives of many Christians and many good people and even children. Globalism took a huge knock. Evil political parties and their plans and strategies took a huge knock. Evil people that donate their time and money to support evil and evil strategies and conspiracies and strategies took a huge knock. Evil institutions and organizations and companies like the media giants took a huge knock.

Much evil was exposed in the past four years. The plans and strategies of the enemy were exposed and destroyed. God laughed at them and He brought it all to naught. They had such a wonderful foundation. They were getting ready to take the success that they had over the past ten years to a new level. But then disaster struck. God destroyed all their work and all their plans and they are back to square one.

People saw it all. They see it happening right across the world and they are rejoicing. There has been a lot of improvements but God is not finished yet. He is still doing what needs to be done and He needs us to help him. The enemy and his evil servants are putting up a fierce fight as an attempt to undo what God has been doing. That is why you see America burning right now. That is why you see all sorts of evil situations flaring up all over the world. The enemy is fighting back. Sometimes it feels that the people of this world is losing their minds. It amazes me how evil they are and what they are capable of. It is insane. I would not have believe much of this if you told me it was going to happen.

See also
Finding a Man Of Peace

Why did all the bad things happen the past decade? Why is it still happening? When the devil controls powerful people and politicians, he can change the world. He uses bad people to cause evil to reign. The only thing that can prevent this, is the church. God uses the church to overcome evil. He uses you and me to overcome evil. He uses the church to change the world.

So what has changed? During the past fifteen years, evil ran wild. Evil gained so much ground and we all observed the consequences thereof. It appeared that evil was going to take this world over completely. That is why God intervened. That is why He has shaken this world to the core. He did it by changing the political landscape through Brexit and Donald Trump and many other people across the world and He did it through the COVID-19 pandemic. I still believe that if God did not allow it to happen, He caused the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s purpose was to shake every person right across the world. It’s purpose was not only to shake the world, it was also to shake the church. Everybody needed to wake up.

COVID-19 caused devastation in terms of the loss of human lives. It caused economic collapse or at least serious economic damages and turmoil. Countries and nations, the economy, businesses and institutions, and virtually everybody suffered losses and are still suffering losses because of it. Many people lost a lot of money. Many people lost their jobs. Many people live in fear because of the uncertainty. God has been testing the faith of his children. God exposed the relevance of the church. Many Christians and church leaders have already died because of COVID-19. This should not have happened. They should have been ready for this pandemic. They should have had the necessary faith to make it through this thing.

He made it as clear as daylight that many Christians and the church itself is spiritually in a poor and unacceptable condition. Many of us are standing with red faces when we think back on how we reacted to all this. The church hasn’t got faith. Christians just do not have faith. God exposed that fact. The fear and panic resulted in irrational and wrong decisions being made by people, Christians and church leaders. The church did not know how to deal with all the issues and challenges. This happened because the church did not grow spiritually during the past decade or two. The church actually deteriorated. This is why all this happened. God exposed us so that we can wake up and see what is going on. We need to know the truth and admit the truth so that we can become willing and able to change.

Plagues and pestilences are equalizers. It does not discriminate against anyone. The fact that nobody can provide any protection or any security whatsoever is especially challenging for most people. It reminds them that the support systems of the world are not that reliable at all. When they see or hear how people die around them, how the medical profession struggles to cope with the situation, how the economy and everything that is man-made collapse all around them, they lose their sense of security, especially when stability and security and order rapidly give way to chaos and instability and disorder and confusion. This is when people look for something outside the norm or other than the usual support systems that they can cling onto to sustain and maintain them during this time of turmoil. This is the reason why millions of people have started to follow Jesus Christ in the past few months. This is why many lukewarm Christians have decided to recommit their lives to God.

See also
Church Expansion Program Resources

This is also why the church needs to change. Those churches and denominations that refuse to change might regret it in the months or years to come. The challenges are not going to stop. COVID-19 may blow over but something else may take its place. God is on the move. We will have to change. Jesus Christ is the Head of the church. The Holy Spirit empowers us to do the job. If we are involved in things other than the things that Christ instructed us to do, they will not work with us. We need to be obedient. God works with us when we are obedient and when we do what we are supposed to do. This series is to help every church leader to adapt to the new situation and to help them cope and to help them to prevent hardships in future.

We should all heed to the calling of God. He is mobilizing and activating his church as He wants the church to be mobilized and activated. We cannot follow our own agendas any more. We have reached a “live or die” situation in the history of the church. People who do not listen will backslide. Church leaders who do not listen will see their churches closing their doors. This is not a tactic that I am using to scare you. There is nothing in this for me. This is a call for a reality check. It is time that we take stock. It is time that we evaluate what we are doing. It is time for change.

One of the biggest changes that we can make is to make use of the laborers. As soon as church leaders understand the power and the abilities of well-balanced laborers who are unleashed into this world to do the work of the ministry, they will reap the benefits forever. We have mentioned in Session 4 that the new converts will turn out to be a tremendous help.

People often wonder how new converts can play such an important part when it comes to evangelism. They just do not understand that new converts are in reality far more valuable than most old Christians in this regard. The reason for this is because most Christians have been failed by the church. We have failed to utilize them according to the instructions that Jesus gave us. We have failed to equip them the way that we were supposed to. They have never learned how to fulfill the great commission and they were spoiled because of this. Many of them will be willing to accept this new way and new methods that we are going to teach them but many of them have been spoiled beyond repair, and this is a shame.

Many people, including church leaders, just cannot grasp the fact that new converts can be taught to do the work of the ministry within a week or two or in some cases within a few weeks. I know of a person who accepted Jesus Christ on Thursday. On Friday he was baptized. On Saturday he was baptized in the Holy Spirit and a few days after that he already healed a few people, led some of them to Christ, and interpreted tongues. This happened because this person was taught in the way that I am describing in this series.

See also
Church Expansion Program

As I said, your most powerful resource is the new converts, the laborers that we should always pray for. In Session 2 of this series, we addressed one of the ways that we should utilize the new converts. New converts are very excited about Christ Jesus and their experience with him. Some have been delivered or healed of disease during the outreach and they are just over the moon with joy. They just love Christ and at this stage, nothing is impossible in their eyes and by the way, nothing is impossible. This wonderful experience happened just a few days ago in their life. So it is important to take them out with you with the next outreach, which should be a day or two after they decided to follow Jesus Christ. This allows them to see and observe the same experience from another perspective. They see what happened to them a few days ago and they learn a lot more. Show the new converts that they can immediately pray for the sick by laying hands on them and they can immediately lead people to Christ. Allow them to do both as soon as possible.

Get as many teams out as possible at different times and different areas in your town or city. There should be different teams going out every day. Very soon you will experience a lot of breakthroughs in this regard. The mature disciples will get better day by day. The new converts will get better day by day. Things will be easier and easier day by day. Before you know it, within a month or two, some of the new converts will be overseeing outreach teams. This is the power of true Biblical discipleship. Your congregation will grow rapidly and new churches will be planted.

The fact that new converts will be able to oversee new teams in such a short period ensures that churches expand fairly quickly.

We also discussed the power of the baptisms. We need to be baptized in water as soon as possible and we need to be baptized in the Spirit as soon as possible. Many people do not know that our souls are not saved or justified by grace or faith only but through works as well. We read that in James 2:24

Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.

Many people do not know of this Scripture in the Bible. It does not contradict Ephesians 2:8-9 which says that we are saved through grace and not by works. Ephesians 2:8-9 refers to our spirit and James 2:24 refers to our soul and body. So if the soul and body are saved by works then it is saved by us. We have to do the job. We do the works. We need to pursue holiness. We need to crucify the flesh. We need to walk by the Spirit. We need to renew our mind. All these things are not so easy to do.

This is why the water baptism and the baptism in the Holy Spirit are required. We need God to help us with this and we need the “tools” that He gave us to help us with this. The baptism in the water helps us to get rid of the old man by crucifying him on the cross and by dying with Christ and rising with Christ and by the washing off of our sins. These things happen in the water.

Many people think that we need to be pure and holy and that we need to deserve the Holy Spirit before we can be baptized in the Holy Spirit. The truth is that the exact opposite is true. We need the Holy Spirit to help us and lead us and teach us and remind us what the word of God says and what Jesus said and what the Father said and exhort us and motivate us and comfort us and intercede for us and reveal the truth to us and inspire us and build us up. We need the Holy Spirit in his fullness. When we go out to be obedient to Christ and to fulfill the great commission we need the Holy Spirit to empower us to preach the gospel of Christ and to heal the sick and to cast out demons and to do miracles and to raise the dead. Without the Holy Spirit the nine gifts of the Spirit cannot function in our lives.

See also
How Can We Help You?

This is the true gospel of Christ and if we follow these three steps we are immediately on a path of success, victory and freedom. This is real freedom. This is divine dominion. We repent, we follow Jesus Christ through the water, we are baptized in the Spirit and the moment all this happens, we are free and ready and able to do what God wants us to do. If any of the three steps are missing we are spiritually not at such a good place in our lives as we should be. We are not completely saved when one or more of these things are missing.

We are completely saved when we are obedient in all three these steps and if we truly pursue holiness. When we do this, our spirit and our soul and our body have all been set free completely. How do we know if a person has been saved and set free completely. We know this when the soul is like the spirit and when the body is like the spirit. This is when the body is completely healed. No more sicknesses and diseases are evident in such a person’s life. We know it when the soul is completely submitted to God and his word and his will. This means that there is no more struggle and wrestling and fighting and bad emotions and bad attitudes. The soul has completely submitted himself to the Holy Spirit and allows the fruit of the Spirit to flow through him continuously.

So most of us are still in the process of saving our soul and our body. Some are very successful with this and others not. Some are more obedient and others not. Just think of a person who repented fifty years ago but who was never baptized for the remission of his sins and who was never baptized in the Holy Spirit. How successful do you think he is in this area. Did such a person save his soul and his body completely? No he did not because it is impossible to do these things without the help of God and without making use of the “tools” that He gave us.

Such a person probably experienced quite a lot of turmoil and hardships and problems in his life. Such a person never could reign as a king in the kingdom of God. Such a person experienced quite a mediocre life in Christ. He or she is like the nation of Israel who could only conquer about ten percent of the promised land. Such a person failed to claim his or her inheritance. They are poor in spirit and they lack a lot. They are not spiritually developed like they should have been.

So this session concludes the Discipleship program which was aimed at helping church leaders to adapt to changes and to counter bad events and situations like COVID-19 and financial difficulties and other challenges that they might face. By the way, our next series is all about house churches. It will be a very comprehensive series and all aspects of house churches will be discussed.

ASR Martins

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