In the beginning, west of Eden, humanity began to fulfill the command of God:

Designing Discipleship Systems: from the Introduction 1.1

QUOTE In the beginning, west of Eden, humanity began to fulfill the command of God: “be fruitful and multiply.” God’s creation is continually fruitful in a continually changing environment. To adapt and be fruitful is natural to all creation.
In the beginning, north of Calvary, the disciples began to fulfill the command of Jesus Christ to be fruitful and multiply:
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20) [2].


In the following twenty centuries the pace of change has accelerated as the population of the world has increased. Each new generation of Christians has flourished relative to their obedience to everything that Jesus commanded. As Donald McGavran said, “It is God’s will that his Church grow, that his lost children are found” [3] The foundational principle of church growth is “Thy will be done” (Matthew 6:10). The Great Commission is more than a principle; it is a pattern for the Church of Jesus Christ to obediently practice in order to fulfill God’s will to be fruitful and multiply. [1]


The photo …
[1] The quote is a selection from David O. Kueker’s Fuller Seminary Doctor of Ministry project submitted in September, 2007, entitled Diagnosis, Dialogue, and Decision: A Threefold Process of Revitalization For the Illinois Great Rivers Conference, page .
     It is shared here in recognition of its 10th Anniversary along with comments to update and provide perspective on the material. The original project was a Training Manual/Study Guide of three Seminars supported by three chapters of research and an Introduction. The material is available for download at In 2009 it was provided for purchase as a softcover book entitled  Designing Discipleship Systems: Christian Disciple Making For Any Size Church, Any Theology
[2] Genesis 1:28. Cf. Genesis 8:15-17. All quotations of the Bible are from the Revised Standard Version of
the Bible, copyright 1952 [2nd edition, 1971] by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the
Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
[3] Win Arn, “The Donald McGavran I Knew,” Ministry Advantage 7, no. 4:6.
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