The GFA School of Discipleship may be the most unusual school in America. The school functions in the classical style of discipleship training where students are not just taught but are also mentored.
In New Testament times, formal education ceased at age 13, then a young man would follow a profession, most likely the same as his fathers. If he chose to become a teacher, a scribe, a rabbi, a philosopher or politician, he would enter into a program of study under the tutelage of an experienced leader. In effect, he would become the shadow, imitator and emulation of a teacher, learning not only how to make his living but also how to live according to the values of his master.
Jesus chose 12 men from a variety of backgrounds and occupations to become His disciples during the three years of His earthly ministry. These are the men who first come to mind when Christians hear the word “disciple.”
The point of the process was for them to become like Him—to learn the truth He taught, to apply that truth to shape their values, and to put it into practice in ministry. Unless told to do otherwise, a disciple would follow and study not just the master’s teaching, but the master himself.
The GFA School of Discipleship gives students the opportunity to live within a community of believers whose passion is to love Christ and to serve others. Students become an integral part of that community learning what it means to be committed to Christ, to learn more about Him, and to learn how to live in a more intimate relationship with Him, allowing the Lord to guide their paths.
During their entire experience, these select young people enjoy the privilege of serving others by participating in the ministries of GFA. At the same time, the School of Discipleship is a ministry of GFA to the students.
The three main pillars of this one-year, immersive experience are the study of and submission to God’s Word, making Christ known through missions and evangelism, and personal character transformation.Jesus told a parable of two men who built their own houses. One built his house on a rock. The other built his house on the sand. When the storms came, the house on the rock stood firm. The other man’s house was destroyed. Jesus called the man who built upon the rock a wise man. The other, he called foolish.
He compared them to people who read the Scriptures. Some read and let the Word inform and transform them. Others read the same scriptures but are unwilling to submit to living like the Master. It was not the rock or the sand that made one man wise and the other a fool. It was the difference in if they let the Word of God change them or not.
That is the point of discipleship. A disciple has a willingness to become like the Master by learning His Word, allowing Him to change us to be more like Him, and to let Him direct our paths so that we serve Him wherever He sends us with His message.
The humble, caring leadership of experienced, dedicated Christian mentors makes the School of Discipleship “one year that will change your life forever.”
To learn more about the School of Discipleship, visit this page on the GFA website.
To read more posts on Patheos on the GFA School of Discipleship, go here.
A free information kit is available online. Simply fill out the form and we’ll get your package on the way.
In the meantime, enjoy this video of Rachael, a former School of Discipleship student, as she tells how she was impacted by her experience.
- Gospel for Asia, A one-year discipleship school
- Gospel for Asia, What Makes GFA’s School of Discipleship Distinct?
- Gospel for Asia, Photo of the Day
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