11 May 2016


By John Ollis

I am sure there are many people who think I am fanatical about  what I call Biblical Discipleship and the are right, and I want to tell you why ok?
Firstly, because it is a direct command of the Lord Jesus Christ, but also out of my personal experience of NOT being discipled, and then seeing the awesome results of Biblical Discipleship in others.
Many of you know I was born again as a10year old boy. When I stood up I knew old things had passed away, and all things had  became new,BUT I was not offered any form of discipleship, so really throughout most of the next 10 years my life was like the Australian Stock Exchange continually up and down, I NEVER  lost the assurance of being born again, but like Adam and Eve would regularly run and hide, and constantly lived with guilt in my life. Interestingly even though by 15 I had received my call to ministry life was a constant  spiritual struggle. Why didn’t someone walk with me and tell me that Salvation was not just initially getting your sins forgiven, but through the work of Christ’s death and resurrection  I could live a victorious, holy, and pure life? These are the basic reasons why I am committed to Biblical Discipleship. As I have seen too many precious believers struggle unnecessarily for too many years.
I went into ministry in my early twenties, and I would at least come along side young people and seek to encourage them in their spiritual walk. Although I was still  personally very ignorant of what my  personal inheritance in Christ was.
In my early forties, I heard Rev. Frank Damazio preach on Biblical Discipleship and explaining the meaning of the word translated “feed” in John 21:15&17. It is the Greek word BOSKO, and the etymology of this word is this, it is the picture of the shepherd going through the wool, looking for the cuts, scratches , bruises,and the rubbish that is caught up in the wool, and the shepherd is so close to the sheep that the smell of the sheep is on him. AAt last I had the keys and the answers I needs to fufill the Great Commission.
Does that sound simply like a 4 or 6 week class ? I DON’T THINK SO. In Luke 4 :18 Jesus speaks of the anointing that was resting on Him (Amp.N.T.) especially for those who are oppressed, (who are downtrodden) bruised, crushed, and broken down by calamity (the calamities of life). The reality is we all bring a lot of baggage with us when we are born again, that is the effects and influences of our previous life before we came to Christ. These areas cannot not be  effectively dealt with  in a group situation. The Gospel is meant to bring wholeness to us, and yet we have millions of believers sitting in church pews every Sunday, they know they are born again, but carry continually the effects of the past as baggage in their lives. Can you see we need help to grow to maturity? JESUS CALLS IT DISCIPLESHIP.

Positively,I use the example of prayer, just teaching on the topic in a class will not make the students pray-ers, someone must walk with them until prayer becomes an exciting lifestyle. Then, for example there is the area of the mind which generally is not controlled pre-conversion, but unless we learn to protect  our minds  post conversion  we will never come to spiritual maturity. Again, this cannot simply be taught in a class, but  we need a Discipler/Mentor to help us and give us the keys to protecting our mind. Do I dare suggest that as a result of Bosko ministry a new believer may need deep emotional healing and even deliverance from spiritual forces?


This is a good question, let me give you my take on the subject.

Using your sanctified imagination, visualise a number of people responding to an Altar Call in an evangelistic meeting, there are potentially  three different groups amongst these people. They all pray the Sinner’s prayer, but the results can be totally different.

The first group, are wonderfully born again, and like myself discovered  without a doubt change had come. Immediately Discipleship should commence.

The second group, sincerely prayed but without them realising it, they have actually only started on a pilgrimage, and the spiritual transaction is yet to take place. For some it will be days, for others weeks, and months and years, if discipleship does not immediately commence. So again Discipleship should also immediately commence with this group, the Discipler must sensitively recognise when the Holy Spirit is drawing and convicting this person, and help them come to that place of surrender to the Lord. I have literally had hundreds of students tell me, they prayed the Sinner’s prayer a number of times before assurance came that they were born again.  Without discipleship this group may attend church for a while and then slowly drift away, and many would simply say they have backslidden, but the reality was they had not been born again.

The third group, although expressing interest have a considerable way to go, before they are able to repent. What an opportunity for believers to reach out and show love and care to them, and continually pray for them until they too come to Christ.

There will perhaps be many who are reading this, and can relate  to what I have written. They were never discipled, and it took literally a number of years before there came some degree of victory and balance in their lives. There will be others who still have an inconsistent unfulfilled Christian life, to both groups I would say seek out a Mentor (same sex) who you respect and honour for their Christian life, and initially just spend sometime with them, before you formally ask them to be your Mentor.


We probably all have some regrets we cannot change the past, but we can sure change the future. Mentoring requires trust and honesty, and there does need to be boundaries, in every generation there are ministries like myself who promote Bosko ministry, and because of excesses in the past, we throw the baby out with the bathwater, and reject the method as expressed above. The reality is if we want quality disciples, we need to do it the Bible way, and this must include Bosko ministry.

I have never explained as fully in writing before the above teaching. I trust it blesses and challenges you, if you want clarification or disagree with something I said please feel free to write to me.