Identity-based discipleship focuses on who the Christian is at their core. It is mostly concerned with answering the question, “Who am I in relationship to God’s mission?” At Ephesiology, we have designed an identity-based discipleship founded on several books of the New Testament connected with the movement in Ephesus. Ephesus gives us the most complete picture of how early Christ-followers formed communities that were myopically theocentric in their passion to join with God on His mission to see more people worshipping Him. This was foundational to their knowing God, being known by God, and living as a community of people who acted on what they knew about God. We trust this study will be a benefit to you in your efforts to multiply disciples.
The Challenge of Co-vocational Ministry (5:14)
The Discipleship Pathway
The discipleship pathway focuses on four sequential discipleship groups (Discovery, Growth, Action, and Life) that build from one to the other in a systematic manner that ensures a solid biblical foundation for maturing disciples. The groups are designed to meet on 5-7 occasions during fall and winter months with summer focusing on other ministry opportunities (short-term missions trips, equipping trips, local outreach). The pathway is illustrated below.
The timeframe in transitioning from one group to the next is typically 7-15 weeks. As disciples move from one group to the next, expectations on group participation increase. For example, members of a Discovery Group who transition to the a Growth Group will be preparing to lead a Discovery Group by the time they transition to an Action Group. Each transition requires leaders to increase their commitment to disciple-making. The typical group leader will not only lead his or her group, but also participate in a group with peers. In addition, group leaders will occasionally participate in leadership development seminars and other topical seminars designed to build into their spiritual life.
Introducing Identity Based Discipleship (2:04)
How to Lead a Discipleship Group (3:30)
The Rhythm of Discipleship
The rhythm of discipleship focuses on specific formation events during the course of a year that build discipleship momentum. During the course of a calendar year, the movement can implement a complete cycle that prepares leaders, conducts personal evangelism, participates in short-term missions trips, catalyzes a large evangelistic event, and forms new Discovery Groups while continuing Growth, Action, and Life Groups.