Christians often think of themselves falling into one of two categories – disciple or layman, although such view is non-biblical. Disciples are dedicated followers of Christ and they idealistically follow Jesus’ command to the letter. They are not afraid to put themselves in jeopardy. They are zealous. Yet at the same time, they have this uneasy feeling of inadequacy. Luke 14:25-27 states:
“Now large crowds were going along with Him, and He turned and said to them, “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his own father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.”
On the other hand, laymen are willing followers. Unlike their counterpart, they lack the zeal. They like to take a back-seat role and tend to be practical. Thinking they are eternally saved, they don’t mind tithing and doing some ministry work, but deep inside, they have this nagging feeling of shame if they were to meet Jesus tonight.
In fact, these two categories do not exist. They are only self-perceptions as one tries to establish himself in comparison with others. Both disciples and laymen are all followers of Christ, which is the precise meaning of a Christian. They just try to work out their salvation with different approaches. One lays heavily on ideology, and the other on practicality. Ideology without practicality is just hot air, and practicality without ideology is stale air. Both are needed, but all Christians are called to be disciples of Christ.
On the Chinese Ministry side, the Blessing Group ministry can provide the framework on which to work out the practicality of Christian ideologies to love one another, make disciples and train disciples.
路加福音 14:25-27 25 有極多的人和耶穌同行。祂轉過來對他們說：26「人到我這裡來，若不愛我勝過愛自己的父母、妻子、兒女、弟兄、姐妹，和自己的性命，就不能作我的門徒。27凡不背著自己十字架跟從我的，也不能作我的門徒。」