The Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20 makes Christian mission clear: "And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
In a phrase we are called to "make DISCIPLES." I've heard lots of debate on what that passage "really means." Some prefer to see it as a primary text for the evangelistic work of the Church, focusing on the word "Go." Others focus on the phrase "make disciples" elevating the one to one discipleship/mentoring approach. As a teacher, I often focus on the phrase "teaching them to observe all...," elevating the role of preaching and teaching. In the end, I think we would all do well to recognize these interpretations are all embedded in this text and undeniable parts of the Christian Mission. If we are honest, every "part" of the Great Commission is in need of more frequency and excellence.
Today I am boldly promoting an innovative new tool that I believe is a game-changer for Christian mission. My friends at Downline Ministries here in Memphis have developed a tool to help individuals and churches better fulfill the Great Commission of Jesus. It's called the Downline Builder (please watch the video above). I am encouraged by this tool for a number of reasons...
1. Customizable, ever-growing library of excellent curriculum. You get to pick and choose the curriculum YOU need for your context. We've all done Bible studies that have great cover designs and promise the world, only to be disappointed by the content or some portion of the content that seems irrelevant. The DL Builder allows you to select the number of lessons and focus of your curriculum, taking out the guess work and making the most of your time. You can customize and download curriculum for a number of uses including: personal mentoring, group leadership, Sunday School class lessons and I dare say sermon prep helps.
2. Not just for pastors. DL Builder is designed for the regular Joe in need of a no-nonsense curriculum to ensure disciple-making can exist right alongside the busyness of family life and career. You don't have to be a pastor or have a seminary degree to do this. At the same time...pastors, we need this tool as well. If we're honest, sometimes we need a leg up from time to time in our content and our personal involvement in disciple-making.
3. Electronic, global access. Downline is committed to continue development in multiple languages so this technology is available to the world at the touch of a button. Currently the entire English speaking world has access to this tool, making it a one of a kind, affordable resource for the big "C" Church around the world. Please share this with your friends and those you have on the mission field around the world.
4. Saves money. For the individual or church on a budget, this tool is remarkably affordable. I strongly encourage churches to consider the DL Builder to become the curriculum choice for Sunday School classes and small groups church-wide. This would likely result in hundreds, if not, thousands of dollars saved for churches; money that could be put back toward global missions or community development in your church's backyard.
5. Theologically responsible. If you care about good theological content (which you should) the DL Builder will not leave you disappointed. The Downline team is scholarly yet practical and approaches Scripture honestly seeking the intersection of God's truth and everyday life. There is deep truth explored in every lesson as well as life-changing points of application so we do not fall into the trap of being "hearers of the Word and not doers." You may not "line up" with every doctrinal position Downline takes, but I think you will find, as I have, that Downiline is "theologically responsible" giving you confidence in everything they do from their original Downline Institute, to the Downline Men's and Women's Summits and now with the Downline Builder.
Please don't miss getting in on the "ground floor" of the Downline Builder. Your initial involvement will help promote this unique and needed tool around the world. For the record...I was not asked to post this, I'm not getting paid by Downline and I don't teach for Downline...yet :). I simply believe in this tool and recommend it to all my readers...Downline Builder is "Stuff I Like."
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