Professional Dissertations DMin

Date of Award

2022

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

College

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Kurt Johnson

Second Advisor

Victor Jaeger

Third Advisor

S. Joseph Kidder

Abstract

Problem

Traditional Adventist public evangelism in North America typically sees a large drop in attendance of new converts or potential converts shortly after the meetings end. I have personally held or been a part of around thirty evangelistic series in the past twenty years and have seen this pattern in each of them. The consequences are the loss of new or potential members, who, given more interaction with the evangelist, may assimilate into the church.

Method

An online discipleship program was created and launched in the Summer of 2020 in Indiana. Its purpose was to educate the participant on how to be a well-rounded disciple. The program had seven sections which were called the 7 C's of discipleship. The 7 C's were as follows: Character of God, Communion with God, Comprehension of His Word, Calling, Community, Conflict, and Culture. All the program was recorded usually short lectures done by me. There were thirty-one lectures the participants viewed. They took a survey prior to beginning the program and then when they concluded each section to assess levels of growth in each area.

Results

Eighteen students completed the online discipleship program. The surveys' results were calculated for the group and then averaged. This was done before the program and after each section. The participants experienced growth in knowledge in each of the sections. Concerning Conflict and Culture, participants expressed a greater understanding of how these subjects play a role in the discipleship process. Calling seemed to have the weakest impact as the participants needed more guidance in identifying their spiritual gift.

Conclusions

The project demonstrated the need to have an organized discipleship program for both members and new converts in a local church. The 7 C's seemed to help the participants understand what it means to be a follower of Christ. The findings suggest that having both members and new converts go through a well-rounded program like this will have positive results on the spiritualtiy of the participant.

Subject Area

Evangelistic work--Indiana; Discipling (Christianity); Church work with new church members--Seventh-day Adventists

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