Ezra 7:10 (ESV) “For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.”
I like when things can be simplified. Why make things more complicated than they need to be? As a result, when I read this verse, I noticed a three step pattern for discipleship.
The Church (all believers) is commissioned to make disciples. As a result, I have seen churches embark on discipleship programs involving one-on-one meetings and workbooks. These things are not wrong in themselves, but it seems to me that discipleship is a natural result when leaders do what Ezra did.
Ezra studied the law of the Lord, learned to live out that law in his life and taught others to do the same. It doesn’t have to be complicated or programmed. Discipleship should be a natural outworking of living out the good news of Jesus Christ.
Meetings and workbooks might be used as tools in this process, but I have seen programs fail because the meetings and workbooks became the end rather than the means.
Discipleship is not a program, it is a lifestyle.