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A view of discipleship from the Philippines: what do you think?

What is discipleship?


We have just spent a few days with our friends Molong and Lisa Nacua in the Philippines. Apart from the incredible fellowship, food and snorkeling, we had opportunity to question Molong about what he is doing. 

Molong is in the middle of an interesting experiment. He is making disciples who make disciples—literally. The question he asks people is, “Would you like me to make you a disciple?” He speaks to friends, those who “trust him, believe in him and are loyal to him.“ And then he shows them how to become a follower of Jesus—one who hears what the Holy Spirit is saying to them and who obeys. If they are willing to be made a disciple, then he speaks to them of Jesus’ death and resurrection and how to become a follower of Jesus. The important thing is that they become followers of Jesus, knowing how to hear his voice, developing intimacy with him.

When they have been baptized, he then says to them, “You make a disciple of Jesus now, one who will follow Jesus and do what he says, just like I made you a disciple.” And they go and find a friend who would like to be made a disciple.

Molong’s philosophy is that we are to make disciples (Matthew 28:19), the Holy Spirit is responsible for maturing them, leading them into all truth (John 16:13) and Jesus job is to build his church (Matthew 16:18). “Follow up” and “discipleship” are not New Testament language. Molong helps this process by creating deep relationship with them, taking every opportunity of teachable moments, living with them from house to house. For him this is church; no scheduled meetings but a lifestyle of living day by day.

Over the past few months, he has made a few disciples, but they have gone on to make more disciples, going down several generations. There are now at least 27 people who have become disciples and been baptized. On one memorable occasion when Molong was out of town, Albert, one of the people who had become a disciple with Molong, baptized someone he had led to the Lord, who baptized the person he had made a disciple who in turn baptized a person he had made a disciple. This is how the Kingdom of God expands. 


What do you think?

8 replies on “A view of discipleship from the Philippines: what do you think?”

We are in the midst of a similar “experiment,” with 4 generations of disciples in 48 weeks. However, our process is a bit different. With a focus on Life Transformation Groups and bible studies heavy on the application side, the Lord has brought a remarkable increase. This is occurring in the Cloud Forest region of Ecuador where the harvest is ripe after nearly 5 years of serving the people in the region.

Oh Thank Goodness! Finally someone does the simplest thing and it satisfies my heart! What an amazing thing happens when, in childlike faith, a person follows Jesus and does what he said to do.
Tonight I watched a testimony of a young man from New Zealand who, when he was 13, read the command to heal the sick, and went with friends to the place where sick people were – the hospital – and did just that… not asking Jesus to heal, but rather bringing the prayer of faith and healing one after the other till they were all well!
May we all go and make disciples, heal the sick, and preach good news to the poor! Just like Jesus said!

WOW! I love this definition of a follower of Jesus “one who hears what the Holy Spirit is saying to them and who obeys.”
Thank you for sharing this

We have made following Jesus so complex here in the West. We have lost our first love, becoming more enamored with our performance in church than with Him. What if discipleship really could be that simple.
Carolyn, amazing story!

I really want to bless both Molong and Miguel as they both have a love and passion for the Lord and want to expand God’s glory in all the earth. Personally I believe I need that time where we do come together for the purpose of equipping and remembering. It is extremely hard to pull off having a meeting (equipping time) and stay focussed on mission.
We are going to begin an experiment this fall with meeting with the purpose of “heavy application” It will include drawing close to God (the trinity), naming our fears, sharing who the Lord has placed on our hearts, and as time goes asking the Lord to help us to come up with a vision on how to reach out.
We have begun prayer walking, which is really strange for me, the streets of our town. We pray for the the breaking down of strongholds in our town. We are praying for a greater sense of urgency (in Christians) to the Lords work on earth and that God’s Spirit would touch the lives of those who do do not know him yet. We will especially be talking about making friends with non Christians.
You asked what we thought. I think that over time it will become important to develop a community sense with other believers. The catch 22 of course comes when we can still meet and stay focussed on the mission. Once you offer people a meeting then that meeting becomes the center. It becomes a nightmare to pull people back toward mission.
Personnaly. I see myself as a missional Christian. I find I desire and need something like the LTG groups. It helps to keep focus. I get excited about coming to those times. But that is just me….

Felicity, Thank you for this story, and thanks to those who commented. I’ll be chewing on this for a while…

I’d love to hear what happens as you continue your experiment! Please let us know.
I agree with you about a community sense with other believers. In one way, Molong and the people he has made disciples meet all the time. They may discuss the Bible over breakfast, or pray for someone as needs come up. They just don’t have a formal weekly meeting
LTGs are a huge help to discipleship (I’ve just done a post on them).

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