Discipleship is an Experience

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Why does affection for believers break out among truly discipled Christians?

What is discipleship?

It is a relationship and it is an experience. In Colossians 2:2, Paul the apostle wrote, “. . . that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love," In Colossians 2, he told us that encouragement is the first result of a careful discipleship process, now he goes on to say that affection among believers is the second result in the emotional life of believers. Why does affection for believers break out among truly discipled Christians? The answer is that the person who feels love tends to love others. As First John 4 tells us, we love because He first loved us.

The discipled individual is introduced to the truth of the Trinity that they have a Heavenly Dad, a protective Older Brother, and a Divine Encourager, the Holy Spirit, the Helper. As they believe those realities, their emotions tend to conform to those realities, and they feel loved. The true discipler does not only impart information, but he also looks for the effect. He looks for the happy expression on the face that says the person is truly believing and truly understanding what they are learning. They don't just disciple the brain; they disciple for the smile—the smile of the well-loved person. So the first two symptoms of a truly discipled person are an encouraged heart and affectionate relationships.

 

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