Follow me, and I will make you become fishers of men.
Mark 1:17 ESV
We believe the definition of a disciple can be found in Jesus’ invitation to his first followers. From this invitation, we draw out three important characteristics of a disciple, found below.
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Follow me: a disciple knows and follows Jesus
In the discipleship process, Jesus is the leader; in order to be one of his disciples, we must intentionally accept his invitation to follow him. This involves a head-level change. A disciple needs to understand who Jesus is and acknowledge him as such. Making the decision to follow Jesus affects how we think and what we believe. This head-level change challenges everything from our worldview to our priorities.
I will make you become: a disciple is being changed by Jesus
Not only do disciples make a mental decision to follow Jesus, they also enter a process of personal transformation in which a deep work takes place in our hearts and desires. Jesus loves us as we are but loves us too much to leave us that way. He works from the inside-out to change his disciples over time into new people, including their character, attitudes, and commitments.
Fishers of men: a disciple is committed to the mission of Jesus
Discipleship is an active endeavor; it is in no way limited to simply sitting and learning. A disciple is called to actively join Jesus on his mission to reach out to others with the life-changing message about his life, death, and resurrection. We offer him our hands for this work. Every man or woman who follows Jesus is expected to use his or her abilities, gifts, and resources to build what Jesus called The Kingdom of God wherever we find ourselves living, working, and playing.