Discipleship @ BBC
From a biblical perspective, every Christian is expected to continue to grow as a fully-functioning follower of Christ. The Apostle Paul chastises believers who could only be fed with milk when they should have been mature enough to eat meat (1 Corinthians 3). God is most glorified by His children when Christ is being formed in them. In so much as God has ordained that pastors and teachers equip, develop and train believers for the work of the ministry, every Christian looking for a church should want to know how they will grow as a disciple of Christ in that particular church (Ephesians 4:11).
The purpose of this webpage is to explain our discipleship, philosophy, and methodology.
1. The more active and faithful the believer is to the preaching ministry of the pastoral staff, the more he or she will grow as a follower of Christ. The entire pastoral staff pours their hearts and minds into preparing expository messages from the Word of God which are designed to edify the believer and equip him or her for the work of the ministry. The more one actively listens and participates in the sermons through bringing their Bibles, taking notes, writing down questions for clarification, etc…, the more they will get out of the message from God’s Word. If a member must miss a service, CDs and DVDs are available at a nominal cost, and Sunday messages are regularly available on the church website under the “Resources” tab.
2. Berean hosts numerous small and medium sized adult Sunday School classes (www.bbcfnc.org/adultbiblefellowship.php) on Sundays mornings. These classes are centered on God’s Word and provide another opportunity to grow in one’s knowledge of the Bible and Christ’s expectation for His disciples. The classes vary tremendously. Therefore, church members have the liberty to move from class to class until they find a teacher who challenges them with lessons which are relevant and applicable to their lives. A pre-membership class is held during this same hour with a focus on basic discipleship, Berean’s covenant, and Berean’s doctrine (topics beginning with the Gospel and ending with an explanation of church discipline are covered).
3. Church members will also find that faithfully serving in a ministry will greatly contribute to their growth as a fully-functioning follower of Christ. Because of Berean’s size, numerous opportunities exist for Christians to use their talents and spiritual gifts in ways that are profitable for the kingdom of God and for Berean.
4. Specialty Bible studies and other classes are offered on Wednesday nights, on weekday mornings and evenings, and on Saturdays to help believers with specific topical or expositional Bible studies. These classes are promoted in the bulletin and on specific web pages. All members are encouraged to attend these studies. These discipleship classes range from financial management to evangelism.
5. The church bookstore provides a selection of study Bibles as well as a multitude of good supplementary tools, resources and books to assist the believer in continuing to grow in the faith through self-study. Pastors are available to answer questions about Bible choices, books and other resources. The bookstore is open throughout the week and before and after all services.
6. Occasionally, Berean offers or hosts seminars, retreats and other events designed to expose a person to truth in a short period of time. These events always provide a tremendous opportunity to grow through concentrated teaching and Bible study for both men and women. These large events are advertised on the web, in the monthly bulletin, and on bulletin boards throughout the hallways.
7. Pastors and teachers mentor new converts in personal Bible studies. If you desire to be mentored, please let a pastor know that your desire is to be personally discipled. Pastors are also available for questions regarding Scripture clarification and biblical counseling regarding the issues and ethical dilemmas that Christians often encounter.
Having now outlined seven ways in which the believer can grow to be more like Christ in Berean, the reality is that all spiritual growth is an individual responsibility. Each believer must take up their cross; they must deny themselves and grow personally. One Christian cannot do it for another and vice versa. The individual believer is the one who must be passionate about seeing Christ formed in his or her life. He or she can achieve tremendous spiritual growth through a combination of Holy Spirit-led, private Bible study, a mentoring relationship with another believer, and active participation in a Bible-believing, Christ-exalting, Gospel-centered, and God-glorifying church. Berean seeks to be this kind of church because it is this kind of church that often sparks the flame of personal Bible study for greater discipleship.
This mentoring or discipleship relationship can be in a very one-on-one manner or it can be in more of corporate sense from the pulpit ministry. And, what works well for one may not work as well for another. However, the bottom-line is God expects each of those whom he has adopted as sons and daughters to become more like His Son in every aspect of their life.