Welcome to disciple making:
This series on disciple making is Booklet 1 – Essentials, which is part of the program Transferable Cross Training
(TCT) developed by Dr. Karl Payne. The purpose of TCT is to help equip men and women to be effective disciple makers. The materials are
field tested with various proof verses that can be memorized, and each lesson is focused on transferability. It is our desire is for those
who accept the challenge of discipleship that, with or without a Bible and notes in hand, each individual who has taken the time to master
the concepts and principles in this series will have confidence to comfortably and biblically respond to common questions and comments
from friends or enemies of Christ. By God’s grace we can make a difference in eternity by being actively involved in the most important
job assignment entrusted to mankind. For more information about TCT or obtaining the booklet series, see
Please remember that the uniqueness of this discipleship series is its simple transferability. It is the expressed desire
of the author that students actually use these materials after completing each booklet, by sharing them with others in a manner consistent
with 2 Timothy 2:2.
It is sometimes difficult to live with trials, but even harder to grow in Christian maturity without them. Here are several simple,
biblical principles to remember before, during and after you find yourself facing a trial or testing time from God.
1. God's Purpose:
God's purpose when we face any trial from Him is to give us endurance, to make our faith and character stronger.
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing
of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
Key words to contrast:
Consider / Count: The way we approach our trials is ultimately our own decision. "You" are the key to determining
whether your trials are viewed as stepping-stones or stumbling blocks.
Joy / Happiness: Joy refers to internal contentment regardless of external circumstances. Happiness is an
emotional response because of external circumstances. God commands us to consider trials as joy, not happiness.
When / If: Trials are not optional, they are coming! Presenting trials as divine payback for disobedience or
something that can be avoided is simply wrong, even if the one attempting to make that case is sincere.
Various: Trials are used to complete and mature us, so that we can be used as an instrument in God's hand to
serve Him in a variety of circumstances. As such, our trials are as varied as the service and circumstances God is preparing us to face.
God does know what is around the corner, even if we do not.
Knowing / Hoping: There is a difference in knowing there is a light at the end of the tunnel and only hoping
that to be the case. God's promise that our trials will make us stronger and always work for our good, regardless of the circumstances,
should impact the way we approach life; mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually.
Endurance: God's ultimate purpose for allowing us to endure trials is to make us stronger. Should trials,
therefore, be considered positive or negative?
2. God's Promise:
God has promised that as He uses trials to make our faith and character stronger. He will also work the circumstances for our good.
"And we know that He causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, those who are called
according to His purpose." (Romans 8:28)
Notice that the ultimate basis for knowing that God intends trials for our benefit is rooted in the same promise He
made for our salvation. Trials are not based on our human performance but on His promise.
3. God's Protection:
God has provided every needed protection for us as we face our trials.
"No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful who will not allow you to
be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it."
(1 Corinthians 10:13)
4. God's Plan:
God has a plan prepared to allow our trials, successfully endured, to become a positive benefit, not only to each of us individually,
but also to others.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and God of all comfort;
who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God."
(2 Corinthians 1:3-4)
- Trials are allowed by God and designed for our strengthening and growth, not our destruction.
- Trials approve us as will as improve us. If we could not handle the situation God would not allow it to touch us. He
has promised to protect us, and always provide an honorable way of escape through the testing process.
- Trials are under God's timing, direction and control. They prepare us for the privilege of sharing with others the same comfort God
has given to us. God is greater than our circumstances.
- Trials are an opportunity to respond supernaturally rather than react naturally.
Dr. Karl Payne, at heart, is an apologist who loves to train and equip Christians for spiritual service
and warfare (Eph.4:11-16). He enjoys preaching, writing and retreat / conference /
seminar speaking. He derives his greatest pleasure tackling the challenge of teaching Christian workers, interns and budding preachers /
teachers at both the Bible College and Seminary levels. In addition, he has co-authored two books: A just Defense and Cross
Training through Multnomah Press.