In a previous case study, we shared a story about a woman who encountered God in a Discovery Bible Study, and had this to say:

“I would have never joined this group if there was a pastor involved.” 

Does this seem counterintuitive? We tend to think professional ministers are key to making new disciples. But in reality, no one needs to attend Bible school just to learn how to reach their friends (And most people who have attended Bible school would agree!). In this article, we’re going to show you exactly how making disciples without ever going to Bible school works.

Overview of the Disciple making process

Some of the main benefits of Bible school (and this is not an exhaustive list) are a deeper understanding of theology from an academic perspective, a better grip on the historical nature of our faith, and the opportunity to learn Biblical languages. These are valuable tools for those whom God calls to use them, but notice how the greatest disciple makers in history—Jesus and the apostles—didn’t necessarily have them. (Okay, maybe they were native speakers of Biblical languages, but other than that!).

Instead, Jesus employed a number of tools that are available to anyone, regardless of academic background. They are:

  • A relational network of friends and family
  • The scriptures
  • The guidance of the Holy Spirit

Not only are these tools available to all of us, but they’re also easy to use, if only we use them for the right purpose. Let’s take a closer look at how to use them.


First, it’s important to realize that all of us have a relational network of friends and family who love and trust us. The New Testament calls this an oikos, and this is foundational to our ability to make disciples like Jesus. For example, in the story of the Gerasene demoniac, Jesus actually discourages the man from following Him. Instead, he says, “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.” (Luke 8:39a)

However, you might feel like your relational network is all tapped out. Maybe you’ve already shared with your family and friends and everyone has made up their minds one way or the other. Well, we have news for you: You still have a relational network! That’s because the people in your oikos have people in their oikos as well. For example, we’ve heard a story about a woman on an island in the Indian Ocean who came from a Christian family and had no one to share with. But when another woman showed up at her church and expressed concern over her own family, the first woman began to show her how to use the Waha app to read the Bible. The word of God transformed the family so much that some friends heard about it and said, “Whatever is going on with you guys, we want to experience it, too!” So, a member from the first family shared what they were doing with the friends and a new group was started in a new village. The woman from the Christian family wasn’t even involved personally with the second group, yet she still made disciples out of them by encouraging the people in her oikos to reach out to others in their oikos.

The next tool in your disciple making arsenal are the holy scriptures. The book of Isaiah says that the Word of God doesn’t “return void,” (55:11) and Jesus said that the scriptures reveal Him to those who read them (John 5:39). Many people feel the need to attend Bible school because they think it will equip them with wise and persuasive words that will help them win people over. That may be the case for some, but the good news for the rest of us is that we have something better than our own words. We have God’s words! So, if you have ever struggled to figure out a clever way to present the Gospel to the people in your life, we encourage you to lower the bar. Don’t try to convince them to follow Jesus after a fancy Gospel presentation; just ask them if they’d be interested in reading the Bible with you sometime and talking about what they think about it. A good way to start is by reading a passage that gives advice about something they care about. From there, just let the scriptures reveal Jesus to them.

After that, it’s important to show them how they might put into practice anything they have learned. After all, Jesus taught that anyone who hears his words and puts them into practice is like someone building their home on a solid foundation. (Matt 7:24) For example, there was a Muslim man in a North African country who was reading the Bible for the first time with some missionaries who lived there. They read a story about forgiveness with the man, but decided to follow up the story by asking, “How will you practice what this story has taught you this week?” The man decided that he would be more forgiving in traffic, and excitedly returned the following week with a story about how he had forgiven a person who cut him off on the highway. He was amazed at how good it felt in his heart to take a baby step of faith towards Jesus and became more open as a result.

Finally, remember that the Holy Spirit has been given to everybody, regardless of their vocational training. It was given to Paul, a learned religious scholar, and it was given to Peter, a scrappy fisherman. Both men performed miracles by the power of the Holy Spirit, and the purpose of these miracles was to get people interested in following Jesus. You see the big secret is, it’s not our job to lead seekers into a relationship with God. That’s His job! Ours is simply to facilitate them discovering God. 

“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day. It is written in the Prophets: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard the Father and learned from him comes to me. No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father. Very truly I tell you, the one who believes has eternal life.

John 6:44-47

It turns out that the best way to convince people to become mature disciples who make other disciples is not to preach at them; it’s just to show them scripture and ask them simple questions like, “What does this teach us about God?” or, “What does this say about mankind, including us?” Getting people to reflect on scripture like this allows them to pay attention to what God Himself is speaking to them inwardly as He draws them to Himself.


So, the next time you hear a brilliant sermon, allow it to encourage you in your own faith, but don’t get discouraged because you think you could never be as eloquent or well-read as the Bible college grad who preached it. The good news about the Good News is, anyone can share it with their friends and family without a ton of training or resources and without it being  a stressful endeavor. 

If you found this article helpful, check out the Waha Disciple Making Course. Our team has curated the best content from the most fruitful disciple makers in the world to better help anyone learn how they can reach their communities and see them completely transformed by making disciples that multiply.