Discipleship is the business of the church, according to Pastor Joey Bonifacio, a member of the International Apostolic Team of Every Nation Ministries and one of the lead pastors at Victory Fort.

He compared it to Toyota, whose sole purpose is to produce cars. Every single person in the company, from the board of directors to the janitor, knows that their business is cars. That is why they can operate with greater success.

In the same way, the church must rally behind a single purpose: discipleship.

“Among all the things that Jesus commanded us, that’s the one that embodies the entirety of the business of the church,” he said.

The word ‘discipleship’ comes from ‘disciple’, which means ‘pupil’ or ‘student’, and ‘ship’ which means ‘to be contained in a journey’. If you combine those two concepts, it simply means that discipleship is a journey with followers of Christ. 

“That’s the essence,” he said. “Discipleship is a journey. You’re never going to stop.”

‘Disciple’ has been mentioned 260 times by Jesus. It was also mentioned in his final statement before ascending into heaven.

Matthew 28:19

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

Jesus says that discipleship is about two things: baptising and teaching.

He commands his disciples to baptize people by immersing them in the relationship with with the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit. He also commands his disciples to teach others to obey His commands.

“The essence of discipleship is a relationship with God and a relationship with others,” he said.

Discipleship must be enjoyable. If it is viewed as merely a duty, it won’t last. 

“It’s enjoying the relationship with God that will make you understand and realize that people are made in the image of God,” he said. “That will make you appreciate and enjoy relationships with others. And when you have that access to people, it’s easy to disciple.”