Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Getting a Hand on Discipleship

Getting A Hand On Discipleship

By Kevin Finkenbinder, kwfinken@gmail.com

Discipleship is one of those “Christian words” that no one seems able to define.  We know discipleship is important because Jesus said we are to “make disciples” (Matthew 28:18-20), but what is a disciple?  The Greek word μαθητης (mathetes) means learner or pupil.

In the 1st century context, a disciple would imitate their teacher in every way possible.  Of course their teacher also learned by imitating someone else.  This is why Paul could tell the Corinthians, “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1).  This was not prideful of Paul, this was the way that people learned.