Below are some questions I get asked from time to time. Feel free to contact me if yours isn’t answered here.
Q: You talk a lot about “specialist discipleship” and “generalist discipleship“. How do those fit with Acts 6?
A: At various times Christian leaders do specialize in one ministry or another. For example, I do a lot of specific work related to North Korea and the persecuted church.
The key thing we need to recognize, understand, and practice is that Christian specialization should only occur when a Christian has become generally mature. That is, Christians should be comprehensively trained before they undertake a specialty. And even when they undertake a specialty, this does not give them license to neglect the general disciplines, commitments, and joys of the broader Christian life.
In the Acts passage, the seven deacons who were selected were Christian brothers who had clearly been well trained comprehensively in the Christian life. This is apparent in the chapters that follow as we see Stephen and Philip in particular exercise broader ministries. So what we must guard against is a mentality that Christians are not called to fullness in Christ but are rather called only to find and fulfill a specialized calling, to the neglect of broader and more comprehensive training. And we must guard against Christian “specialists” who guide others into a niche specialty rather than remembering that our specialties are built on top of general health in discipleship and practice.
Q: Why does .W Church do liturgy?
A: Put simply, the liturgy serves as a scaffolding that (a) guards us from heresy and (b) broadens our Christian life beyond our own experience.
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