1. Discipleship Models

Discipleship Models


These are three models for a “closed-group” strategy.


“A closed-group primarily is an equipping group or event comprised of believers only; the focus is training, the context is discipling, and the intent is to continue assimilation. A closed-group is composed of believers that covenant together to meet over a short period of time for the purpose of becoming equipped to accomplish the objectives of the church.” (Gene Mims in Kingdom Principles for Church Growth, LifeWay Church Resources, pg. 110.)


The following are three different models that can be used for framing your ministry to students. Each model gives key, but general, areas of accountability and study for developing believers. It is recommended that you read the resource referenced in order to understand the model more fully before committing to the strategy.



Seven Checkpoints: Seven Principles Every Teenager Needs to Know, Andy Stanley, Howard Publishing Co., 2001


1. Authentic Faith - Are you trusting God with the critical areas of your life? You have to believe and trust in Jesus Christ as your personal savior if you want to go to Heaven. But faith in Christ also allows you to live on earth in a daily relationship with a heavenly Father who loves you unconditionally. As an all-knowing and all-powerful father you can trust Him to lead you the right way.
2. Spiritual Disciplines - Are you developing a consistent devotional and prayer life? God designed you to have a relationship with Him. Your intimacy with Him will provide the foundation you need to face whatever life can possibly throw at you. His friendship with you provides the ultimate fulfillment and security.
3. Moral Boundaries - Are you establishing and maintaining moral boundaries? Purity paves the way to intimacy. The most important thing you can do is to establish specific guidelines in your dating life. You need to learn how to protect your body and emotions by honoring God's plan for sex and morality.
4. Healthy Friendships - Are you establishing meaningful friendships? Your friends determine the direction and quality of your life. If you walk with the wise you grow wise. Spending time with right kind of friends definitely helps you grow in a positive and healthy direction. Scripture also teaches that "The companion of fools will suffer harm." Learn to build healthy friendships and avoid unhealthy friends.
5. Wise Choices - Are you making wise decisions? In light of past experience and future dreams, you need to ask yourself "What is the wise thing to do?" Good decision making is more than simply choosing between right and wrong. It is the skill of applying Scriptural principles so you can make smart choices which will protect your future.
6. Others First - Are you involved in a personal ministry? Scripture teaches that God has created you to do good works and that he has given you unique gifts and talents. Discovering those gifts and using them to make an investment in others is a key to lifelong fulfillment.
7. Ultimate Authority - Are you submitting to the authorities God has placed over you? To have authority you must be under authority. The parents, teachers, and leaders that God has placed in your life are there to guide and guard your potential and life. The greatest lesson you can learn is how to respect and honor those who are in authority.


Basic Student Discipleship, LifeWay Church Resources, 2002


1. Lordship: The Cost of Discipleship & Setting Godly Priorities
2. Accountable Relationships
3. Scripture
4. Prayer
5. Ministry: Making Eternal Investments
6. Spiritual Warfare
7. Christian Character


Gene Mims’ Seven Essential Areas of Discipleship from Kingdom Principles for Church Growth, LifeWay Church Resources, pg. 115. These areas of concentration are referred to as essentials to be explored in any “closed-group” experience.


1. Identity in Christ
2. The Kingdom of God
3. Spiritual Warfare
4. Relationships
5. The Church
6. Work
7. World

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