Every Tuesday morning, I review a book that I read recently. If you missed any, you can read past reviews here. This week’s book is Discipleshift: Five Steps that Help Your Church to Make Disciples who Make Disciples (kindle version) by Jim Putnam, Bobby Harrington, & Robert Coleman.
As you can tell from the title, this book is about discipleship and how a church creates a system where discipleship can happen. If a church is to accomplish this goal, and according to Matthew 28, it is why the church exists. The authors form this as the basis of the book: “The mission of the church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ.”
But, what is a disciple? A disciple is a person who:
- is following Christ (head);
- is being changed by Christ (heart);
- is committed to the mission of Christ (hands).
For Revolution, this book lays out what our hope and goal as a church is: to make disciples who make disciples. A lot of what the authors lay out has been a part of the transition we have made over the last 2 years. For me, it was helpful to be reminded of where we have come from and get some new ideas about where we are going and how best to get there.
Here are a few things that jumped out to me:
- One problem today is that churches are full of “Christians” but not disciples, and yes, there is a significant difference.
- The mission of the church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ.
- Jesus commanded his disciples to go and make disciples. Disciples are not merely converts but also doers, learners, students, Christ followers or better yet, “apprentices of Jesus.”
- If anyone serves Jesus, he must follow Jesus.
- Most Christians have divorced the teachings of Jesus from the methods of Jesus, and yet they expect the results of Jesus.
- Jesus got far more accomplished through twelve committed guys than he did with any of the large crowds he attracted.
- A disciple grows in 4 main areas of life: his relationship with God, his relationship God’s family; the church, his home life, and his relationship to the world.
- Proximity is essential to the learning process.
- We present small group time as an intentional gathering led by a spiritually mature person who understands that his or her job is to help people grows as disciples of Jesus.
- Three necessary components to the disciple-making process: the Word of God, the Spirit of God, and the people of God.
- Small groups are biblical relational environments.
- We cannot separate relationships from the disciple-making process.