What kind of church is TCC? (Part 3: Disciple-making)

11 October 2012

Gateshead Construction

What does it mean to be a ‘disciple-making church’?

In our TCC booklet, ‘Our mission, vision and ministry philosophy,’ we say this:

Our mission is the one given to us by the Lord Jesus: to make disciples of Jesus.
A disciple is literally a ‘learner’. Jesus told his church to teach people ‘to
observe all that [he has] commanded’ (Matthew 28.18-20). So discipleship is
not only a conversion, but a life-long, life-changing pursuit of growing in love
and obedience to Jesus.

We’re a disciple-making church, because that’s the mission that Jesus gave to the church after his resurrection. It might seem obvious, but sadly this core function of the church can easily be assumed and ignored, rather than celebrated and kept central. The church is God’s primary means for making new disciples, and growing disciples into maturity. This means that everything TCC does functions to promote and enable discipleship – making Jesus famous, loved, and followed. Every Christian is a disciple of Jesus who needs to keep growing. Our ‘simple church’ philosophy fits right into this (see the next blog post).

In his book ‘Community’, Brad House writes:

Discipleship is about trajectory. It is taking chaos and giving it direction. Our goal is not a destination as if we could run people through a program that spits out fully mature disciples. Rather, discipleship is about providing a means by which we begin to shepherd people in the direction of maturity. Think of a stream rather than a processing plant between two lakes.

We’re a disciple-making church: we don’t only want to make Jesus more famous, but deeply loved and closely followed as well.

This blog post was written by Dan Martin.