Acts 8:4 – Disciple Maker – Everyone
Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. (Acts 8:4 ESV)
In the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, he calls the first disciples and tells them they will be fishers of men (Matthew 4:18-19). At the end of his ministry here on the Earth, the last command he gives them is to make disciples of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20). As we read these, we can imagine that these commands were only for the disciples, or those who have been called specifically by God to grow the church. You might not even know what a disciple is or how to become a disciple; you figure the guy at church who is in charge of evangelism does that stuff.
In Acts, the book of the early church, there arose a great persecution in Jerusalem (8:1). God was doing awesome things through the disciples and people weren’t liking it. Acts 8:4 tells us that those who were scattered because of the persecution just kept preaching and growing the church. They were the ones going to Judea and Samaria, as Jesus said they would be in Acts 1:8. But, they weren’t the disciples. They weren’t the guys who Jesus said he would make fishers of men and commanded to make disciples. They weren’t the men who spent three years with Jesus on the Earth. The disciples stayed in Jerusalem (Acts 8:1) and the average Joe like you and me went out and made disciples.
The command to make disciples wasn’t just for a certain group of people, but for every Christian. The early church would have never grown as fast as it did if the first Christians thought it was the job of the disciples to do the disciple making. It also isn’t just the job of certain people. Disciple making is the job of every believer. Who are you discipling?