Starting or Joining a D-Group

What is a D-Group?

The Core Group (Discipleship Groups/D-Groups)

  • Groups of 3-6 people. Groups are not mixed-gender, but can certainly be mixed-generation. D-Groups should have a mixture of new believers and long-time Christ-followers.
  • D-Groups are focused on intentional and rapid spiritual growth. Deep discussions about the Scriptures, the individual’s prayers, and what is going on in life will bond the members of the D-Group and allow them to strengthen one another’s faith (Proverbs 27:17).
  • D-Groups are for believers only. You can't disciple a non-believer.

How did Jesus model D-Groups?

In Mark chapter 5, Jesus was approached by a man named Jairus. Jairus was a ruler of the synagogue who came to Jesus, probably at some professional and social cost, to ask Jesus to heal his daughter, who was so sick she was near the point of death. When we look at verse 35, Jesus and his disciples are on their way to Jairus’ house.

Mark 5:35-39

35 While he was still speaking, there came from the ruler's house some who said, “Your daughter is dead. Why trouble the Teacher any further?” 36 But overhearing what they said, Jesus said to the ruler of the synagogue, “Do not fear, only believe.” 37 And he allowed no one to follow him except Peter and James and John the brother of James. 38 They came to the house of the ruler of the synagogue, and Jesus saw a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. 39 And when he had entered, he said to them, “Why are you making a commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but sleeping.”

Peter, James, and John were what you might call the “inner circle” of Jesus’s ministry. They are the core group of men that Jesus personally discipled. These three men were witnesses to some extraordinary and important events in the ministry of Jesus:

  • The raising of Jairus’s daughter (in Mark 5 and in Luke 8)
  • They were eyewitnesses to Jesus’ transfiguration (Matthew 17, Mark 9, Luke 9)
  • They accompanied Jesus when he prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane before his crucifixion (Matthew 26).

Jesus’ Core Group witnessed the greatest moments of Jesus’s glory and his darkest trials. They were his closest friends, and Jesus knew that intentionally having them by His side during these important events would help shape their faith and fan the flame of the Gospel in their hearts for years to come.

The Core Group is where true disciples are made. The Core Group gets us down to the level where we can be held accountable to one another for our spiritual growth, but sadly, most Christians cannot say that they are or maybe even have never been in an intentional discipling relationship with believers who hold each other accountable for reading, knowing, and living the Word of God. 

The problem with intentional discipleship is that it takes time. It takes effort. It isn’t easy. We cannot drift toward holiness. The solution for our discipleship and spiritual maturity is not a microwavable quick fix - it is a crockpot recipe. It takes time. It is slow and methodical. We need one another to intentionally spur us on to spiritual growth over long periods of time.

I want to challenge you to enter into an intentional discipling relationship. In the last 18 months at Salem, we have started Discipleship Groups or D-Groups. These groups of 5-6 people meet once a week for about an hour, they are gender-specific (men with men, women with women), and they meet for the purpose of

  • Reading Scripture Together
  • Memorizing Scriptures
  • Praying for One Another
  • Holding Each Other Accountable to Read, Memorize, and Apply the Scriptures in our lives.

The groups can meet anywhere. You can meet in your home, here at the church, at the coffee shop, or at a restaurant, but the idea is that believers dig deep into the Scriptures together to find how the living Word of God applies directly to their lives, and they hold each other accountable for living that out. This is how we make disciples.


Video Training

The videos below provide training for how D-Groups operate at Salem. If you'd like to talk to someone about starting or joining a D-Group, use the NEXT STEPS form further down this page.




Want to take the NEXT STEP and start or join a D-Group? Use the form below to connect with our Disciple-Making Leadership Team.