Doctor of Ministry
Friesen Smith, Katie
Making disciples is the mission of the church. However, the task of equipping and releasing disciples has become progressively complex with the increased access to information and influence shaped by popular leadership content. This has resulted in the emergence of numerous discipleship methodologies that have targeted specific church growth models while lacking transference. While the 21st-century church is undergoing drastic change, a new discipleship perspective is needed for releasing 21st-century disciples into their missional potential and design. The problem this research addressed is the need for identifying barriers keeping the church from fully expressing the fivefold functions listed in Ephesians 4:11 to develop principles for releasing 21st-century disciples into their missional potential and design. In response to this problem the researcher examined theological and biblical resources to establish support for the practice of the fivefold functions listed in Ephesians 4:11. The researcher also reviewed relevant literature related to servant leadership theory and found that there was a correlation between the fivefold functions and servant leadership theory. A grounded mixed-methodology was used to gather data that identified and assessed barriers that hinder the full expression of the fivefold functions in the church. Finally, the research identified principles for the church to move toward releasing 21st-century disciples into their missional potential and design.The fivefold functions listed in Ephesians 4:11 are essential to discipleship. The barriers that limit the full expression of the church included the apostolic barrier, the prophetic barrier, the evangelistic barrier, and the shepherding and teaching barrier. Each barrier held a principle for releasing disciples into their divine design. These principles included the identification, envisioning, empowering, equipping, and releasing of disciples. The unified expression of these functions are essential to release 21st-century disciples into their divine design.
Doctor of Ministry
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Stephens, N. F. (2018). Fivefold Ministry: an Expressional Church Model for Releasing 21st-century Disciples Into Their Missional Potential and Design [Doctoral thesis, Bethel University]. Spark Repository. https://spark.bethel.edu/etd/607