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September 5, 2018 | by: Tony Sanelli | 0 comments


Discipleship is both organic and formal. It requires not only sharing our faith but also our lives, experiences, successes, failures and struggles. This takes place quietly in one-on-one relationships and in more organized group settings. The Discipleship Training Program (DTP) has been our foundation for formal spiritual formation since the inception of this congregation in 1995.

It exists to advance the kingdom of God by mentoring men and women to live gospel-centered, Christ exalting lives in our cultural context. It has been our conviction that this is best accomplished in the context of the local church. Discipleship within the local church best employs the internship model of training where learning takes place by precept, example, and real-life application.


Writing to a young minister of the gospel, the apostle Paul states, “Watch your life and your doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.”

Tony-NewCharacter and knowledge are inextricably connected and essential not only for pastoral ministry, but for the spiritual growth of every saint.

Accordingly, the focus of this program is upon progress in personal holiness as the product of the theological underpinnings of grace. This dual emphasis is then related to our personal, family and church life. To achieve these objectives DTP utilizes both classroom lecture, participation and small group discipleship with church elders and other mentors.

Laying the underpinnings of grace takes place over two years. The first year focuses upon grasping the theology of the gospel of grace and its application to everyday life. Together we learn how the gospel is at the center of everything. The second year is a survey of Bible doctrine.

This year we have added a new unit to year one of the program that we believe will be very helpful. This class is designed to provide an introductory overview of the Bible as a whole. It will help explain how the Bible’s many stories, characters and main events fit together and connect to Jesus.

We are also renaming each unit for what we hope will be better recognition of its content. Please note the new flow and naming schema of year one below:

  • Gospel Story [unit 1] How does the Bible fit together?
  • Gospel Growth [unit 2] How do believers grow by the grace of God?
  • Gospel Living [unit 3] How do I apply the gospel in every sphere of life?


DTP is offered to all members of Grace Bible Church who yearn for a more vibrant walk with God, desire greater impact in relationships with others and aspire to a stronger grasp of the Word of God. If you are willing to apply yourself to this discipleship we invite you to prayerfully consider participating in this program. Commitments are made one year at a time. Some sections of DTP are coed while others separate men and women for more concentrated discipleship.

Each unit will require reading, interaction with the material, written assignments and the application of spiritual truth in the context of small group accountability.

General Information:

For more information all interested individuals are invited to the DTP Open House on Thursday, September 13 at 7:00 p.m. in the church sanctuary.

Please Note – anyone who has already taken year one is welcome to sign-up for Gospel Story alone.

Please Note – If you plan to participate in Year One or Gospel Story alone, but cannot attend the open house, please let us know ASAP by sending an email to:

Please Note – required texts for Gospel Story are “God’s Big Picture” by Vaughn Roberts and “Christ from Beginning to End” by Hunter and Wellum. Both are available for Kindle. We will have some copies available in our bookstore as well.

Tony Sanelli is a Pastor/Teacher at Grace Bible Church