Results and Repercussions of The Evangelistic-disciplemaking Concept
The first obvious result of re-envisioning and implementing a local church Sports Outreach based on the concept of Evangelistic-Disciplemaking will be surprising, and disappointing to many: … it means there will be lower numbers of people “getting saved.” There are two obvious reasons why the number of “salvations” would go down. First, the numbers no longer include any who make a “decision for a day” but rather only include those who truly become “dedicated disciples” of Christ. The second reason is, when the implications of the gospel are fully understood, there may in fact be a reduction in number of those wanting to sign up to be a life-long, dedicated disciple of Christ. Let’s be honest, it’s much easier to get someone “saved” than it is to “go and make disciples.” So the first real obstacle to implementing the evangelistic-disciplemaking concept in a local church Sports Outreach Ministry has to do with breaking through the mentality of desiring to make grand reports to the church, or worse, fulfill even more base desires or motives. In reality the number of true conversions to Christ won’t go down, only the number of pseudo-conversions.
This particular obstacle becomes definitely relevant when finances are associated with it, and is especially problematic for many sports-related, para-ministries which derive much of their funding by reporting large numbers of “salvations” or “conversions.” My challenge to both the local church Sports Minister and the sports-related, para-ministry leader is to change their narrative to their funding base from numbers of “salvations” to a much more biblical report on how many “disciples” have been made – disciples who are intimately and consistently participating in a local church. I fully believe it will increase and solidify the funding as it communicates a far deeper significance in terms of ministry success.
The next blog will describe the second obstacle to implementing an Evangelistic-Disciplemaking based approach to Local Church Sport, Rec & Fitness Ministry
This blog is an excerpt from chapter #2 of Dr. Linville's yet to be released book – Sports Ministry Fundamentals. All rights reserved. For any reproduction right, including copying, computer reproduction, etc. contact:
Dr. Greg Linville at CSRM International C/O The World Outreach Center 5350 Broadmoor Circle N. w. Canton, Ohio – USA 44709 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Other blogs and articles on Local Church Sports, sports theology and ethics written by Dr. Greg Linville and other local church Sports, Rec & Fitness Ministers are archived at: http://www.csrm.org/blog/archives/05-2016
Dr. Greg Linville was one of the founding members of CSRM and has served as the Executive Director since 2000. He served for 15 years as a local church sports and recreation minister and coached over 30 years at the junior high, high school and collegiate levels as well as 30 years in rec. leagues. Dr. Linville has consulted with churches from Australia, Africa, Asia, Australia, Caribbean, Europe, New Zealand and North America. He was awarded the world's first honorary Doctorate in Sports Ministry and holds an earned Doctorate as well. He is the author of Christmanship: The Theology of Competition & Sport. Dr. Greg has been married for over 35 years, is the father of two married children and the grandfather of a growing number of grandchildren.