Hebert: Discipleship transforms people

What defines “victory” in the discipleship of a new believer?

Andrew Hebert, pastor of Paramount Baptist Church in Amarillo, used to believe biblical head knowledge was a good indicator that a person had crossed a spiritual mile marker, if not finish line, in their discipleship. But coming to the understanding that discipleship is a process—not a waypoint—Hebert now looks to a believer’s character to see if what they have put in their head has made it to their heart.

Continuing in the convention theme, “Belong,” Hebert preached Nov. 13 from Ephesians 4:17-24, emphasizing that the milestones of discipleship are marked by “the way you walk” and “what you wear.”

Anyone who confesses faith in Christ should exhibit a changed life, as Ephesians 4:17 commands. Just as the residents of Ephesus had surrendered to the city’s idolatrous, lascivious culture, Christians should surrender to Christ.

The Scripture passage declares that new believers will shed the old self, continually renew themselves and put on a new character. To make the point, Hebert told of going to a restaurant years ago with his boss, but upon arriving he learned the restaurant had a dress code. Wearing khaki pants and a polo shirt, Hebert was stopped at the dining room entrance by the maître d’, who informed him of the dress code and then reached into a closet filled with suit jackets and put one on Hebert.

“I borrowed this coat because I was insufficiently dressed,” he said. “As soon as I put that coat on he said, ‘Welcome to our restaurant’ and he seated me. Is that not what the book of Ephesians tells us that God does?”

TEXAN Correspondent
Bonnie Pritchett
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