The 48 Hour Rule

Steve AddisonToday’s post comes to us from Steve Addison, author and church planting specialist. Steve has been a life-long student of movements that renew and expand the Christian faith. Steve began his research into Christian movements in the late 1980s while serving as a church planter in Melbourne, Australia. He carried that interest into his Doctor of Ministry with Fuller Seminary. He is the author of three books on movements and he leads MOVE, a mission agency dedicated to multiplying disciples and churches everywhere.

Forget the Engels Scale, the most responsive person on the planet is someone who has just seen the life of a friend or family member changed by the gospel.

That changes everything. That’s why Jesus sent the woman at the woman at the well back into her village. That’s why he sent the demoniac back to his home. He turned new believers into missionaries. Immediately. Immediately means within 48 hours of a person coming to Christ. That’s the 48 hour rule.

How do we do that? There are three things a new believer needs to know.

1. Why

Take out a coin that has the head of a king or queen on it. Explain that now Jesus is now their sovereign, their king. In Mark 1:17 he commands his first disciples to follow him. He is the ruler of our lives. But there are two sides to every coin. The flip side of following Jesus is that he promises to teach us to fish for people. Fishing for people is the job of every disciple.

You can’t split a coin. You can’t separate following Jesus from making disciples.

2. Who

Then ask, “Who do you know who needs to know Jesus?” Help them draw their “oikos” or people map. Pray with the new believer for their family and friends and asks who they could share with in the coming week.

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3. How

Finally, the person needs to be able to share a simple gospel presentation wrapped in their story.

I’ve become a big fan of the Three Circles. It’s clear, simple and memorable.

To read the entire article, including more information about the Three Circles, click here.

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About Nelson Searcy

Nelson Searcy is an experienced church planter, coach and church growth strategist, working with churches in over 45 denominations. Nelson is also the Founding and Lead Pastor of The Journey Church, with locations across New York City and in San Francisco and Boca Raton, FL. He first developed the Assimilation System 10 years ago at the Journey Church and has since implemented and improved these strategies with over 3,000 churches across all sizes and denominations. He started coaching pastors in 2006 and has personally coached over 2100+ senior pastors, helping them break common growth barriers like 125, 250, 500, 1000 and beyond, all while maintaining personal life and ministry balance. As founder of Church Leader Insights and the Renegade Pastors Network, he has trained more than 50,000 church leaders (3,000+ church planters). He is the author of over 85 church growth resources and 17+ books, including Fusion: Turning First-Time Guests Into Fully-Engaged Members of Your Church and The Renegade Pastor: Abandoning Average in Your Life and Ministry. His continued mission is to help church leaders around the world cooperate with God in creating healthy, thriving churches. Nelson is married to Kelley and together they have one son, Alexander.

Nelson SearcyEvangelism, Ministry, Strategy

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