Tribe of Judah Discipleship Program
In an attempt to raise the bar and set a higher standard for Christianity today, the Tribe of Judah has been put to the task of developing a Discipleship Program to truly encourage new converts and the backslidden alike to become true Disciples of Christ. There is indeed a difference in the modern definitions of “believer” and “disciple” and we particularly feel that you cannot be a true believer without being a disciple, here defined as a steadfast adherent to the teachings of Jesus, remaining teachable and disciplined in the ongoing quest to be like Him.
The Great Commission in Matthew 28 is our call and mandate from our Lord concerning this topic. Verses 19-20 read, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you….” Teaching people and leading them by example to follow everything Jesus taught is the very essence of true Christian Discipleship.
Our goal then is to put this into practice in the most accessible and practical ways for men and women, young and old, from all walks (and stumbles) of life. We wholeheartedly, with everything within us, believe that the answers are all found in the Bible and only in the Bible, God’s inerrant Word. And when properly put into practice, exemplified and adhered to, the Word comes alive in people’s broken and messed up lives. In other words, it really works!
We return to the Gospels and the red letters spoken by Jesus Christ Himself for our procedure: I have entitled this The Three Cannots.
Luke 14:26-35 is our text.
Luke 14:26: Says essentially that if you don’t hate or leave everyone you know including your own life, you CANNOT be My disciple. He is, after all, a jealous God. We must desire our relationship to Him first, and then all other connections with loved ones will benefit from that.
Luke 14:27: This verse tells us, famously, that we must bear our crosses, and follow Him or we CANNOT be His disciple. Another verse much like it in chapter nine says we must also “deny ourselves.” Let us be identified with Jesus, both the joy of His salvation and the fellowship of His suffering.
Luke 14:33: You must also forsake all that you have or else you CANNOT be his disciple. Yes, it says ALL. Stuff. Material possessions. Jobs. Cars. Money. All should not matter as much to us as He Himself does.
After this in verses 34-35, the Savior tells us that without being disciples, surrendered and broken, obedient and ready…we become rather useless. He ends up saying that our faith is garbage without discipleship. We want to reverse this and we want to be most useful to our Lord and the people around us, even fit for a King.
Very simply, we will take measures, some rather unorthodox, to see to it that each member of this program is “spurred on to righteousness,” so to speak. There will be accountability, regularly. We are called to pay attention to our lives, not to be judges, but to inspect fruit. Good discipleship implies that we want good fruit as Christians. This means becoming more like Christ.
There are indeed standards in the Bible for every facet of our lives: how we treat the opposite sex, authority, money, employers, ourselves, alcohol, drugs, sex, fornication, the less fortunate, etc. And we are going to seek to live by these STANDARDS. You will be asked about your lifestyle and we will probably NOT leave well enough alone…or you.
This process will involve a lot of regular accountability. We will talk to each other…about the good, the bad, the ugly. And read together what the Bible has to say about any and every issue or situation.
By signing up for this program, entering into this ministry, you will then be open to learning the Bible and practical application through our Tribe of Judah School of Discipleship. You will be expected to regularly attend classes Monday through Wednesday and in the off time serve and work in various opportunities in our church and community. This will include, but is not limited to: cleaning, cooking, maintenance, refurbishing homes, coffee roasting, community events, recording studio interning, gardening, yard work, auto mechanic work, carpentry, winterizing, cutting wood, and much more.
Along with all this, you will be expected to regularly attend two church services a week including Sunday. Plus, food and lodging will be provided for you as you will have now become a integral part of a Christian community, intentionally living as the early Church did, outlined in the Book of Acts. We share meals; we share cars, we share stuff. We are family, all my brothers and sisters and me. Any money or other resource that comes in via donations goes into the pot, out of which we live as modestly as possible. Other specific needs will be met as well, as we live by faith and prayer.
The bottom line to all this is: Yes, this is intense and a little crazy. But, we like to think that this is truly, biblically “normal.” We actually believe what Our Lord taught and what He said and we want to give the best years of our lives, and even some of the worst, to the cause of furthering the Gospel by making men and women disciples, not merely converts. The new normal is being sold out, obedient, surrendered, broken, devout, holy, and righteous unto our God. This is what we seek by all this…to fulfill the grandest of commissions.
If you’re in, sign here:________________________________________________