Discipling Viral Disciples

Roger Thoman wrote this article a few years ago in which he shares what we as followers of Christ are to be doing, namely, reproducing for the kingdom.

Discipling Viral Disciples by Roger Thoman

I no longer try to start simple/house churches.  I think house churches are great.  They provide a place for people to experience participatory, everyone-matters church life.  They provide a way for people to really connect into authentic, one-another community.  They often provide a place for people to recover from some of the pains caused by institutional church life.  But house churches are no longer the end game for me.

Jesus invited us to join him, organically, in the reproduction of life.  His church is a living, thriving, reproducing organism (Mark 4) that allows life-in-the-Spirit to spread virally from one disciple to the next.  His church is alive as illustrated by a seed (Mark 4) that brings forth 30, 60, or 100-fold reproduction.  That is the life of the kingdom.  His life in me is passed on to the life of another (2-fold) which is passed to the life of another (4-fold) which is passed to the life of another (8-fold), etc.  That is the way of organic/viral life and this is what the kingdom IS.  This is ultimately what Jesus invited us to become part of: discipling viral disciplers.

Kingdom life is viral, organic, and, by nature, a movement.

When I have made house churches the end game, I have discovered that they do not naturally reproduce nor become movements.  In fact, house churches have a shelf life.  They may serve a purpose for a season, but when that season ends (and it will) the “movement” is over.  The influence of a house church is temporary.

This explains why Jesus did not ask us to go and “make gatherings or churches.”  He did not ask us to go and “make house churches.”  He said, “go and make disciples.”  This shift from starting gatherings to making disciples (who go and make disciples) goes to the very heart of the matter.  Discipling viral disciplers is the end game.  This places us squarely in the midst of reproductive life that the kingdom is intrinsically about.  We become movement-starters not church-starters.  We release disciples who will influence the world throughout their lifetime and beyond as those they disciple disciple still others.

Now, not to confuse the issue, but often in the work of discipling viral disciplers I will be gathering people together in a manner that looks…….read complete article Discipling Viral Disciples


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