A disciple - a whole person in Christ

An incomplete extemporaneous synopsis of Pastor Lincoln's sermon, "Discipleship," based on Matthew 28:19 (delivered at UIUC UBF; on 8/16/2009) by Ben Toh

1st, a disciple as a whole person. We usually think of a disciple as a pupil, student, learner of Christ, which he is. Then we might have a picture of a disciple based on our church experience or expectation, such as being a good preacher or Bible teacher. So, a broader definition of a disciple as being a "whole" person, the person that God intended for us to be (Ge 1:27), is a refreshing definition. When we are whole, we'd become a far better disciple, as a better husband, father, friend, employee, etc, rather than just a good Christian performing good Christian deeds/duties.

2nd, believing is embracing the truth about God & its consequences. When Abraham believed God (Ge 15:6), he accepted what is true about God, & he embraced this truth along with its consequences. His belief was not just mental acknowledgment, but life change.

3rd, God can use us only after adequate humility & humanity education. Moses, though able & well educated, having received 40 years of an excellent palace education, was still not "whole" enough for God to use him. For when Moses faced a situation, he killed an Eqyptian in order to help his fellow Isrealite. Sadly, many a good Christian's default is to "kick" others in order to "help" some others. Without God's molding & chiselling, we might do so all our lives. Like Moses, we are also much more likely to strike the rock in anger, instead of speaking gently to the rock, as God instructed Moses.

4th, Francis Collins, a world renowned scientist, might not be what we expect a disciple to be, since he doesn't preach or teach the Bible the way we might expect of a disciple of Christ. Yet, he shines the light of Christ as a whole person in a highly academic scientific community populated mostly with skeptics, agnostics & atheists.

Thus, being a disciple of Christ is ultimately not one's choosing or doing (to oneself or to others), but it is God's molding & chiselling of us to be the whole persons/disciples that He intended for us to be, as He did with Abraham & Moses & each Christian whom God chooses.