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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

"Say No to Discipleship" (Jason C. Dukes)

AUTHOR: Jason C. Dukes
PUBLISHER: Exponential Resources, 2013.

[Free ebook available here.]

This book has a provocative title, that should grab attention. It's primary message stresses on the need to focus more on "making disciples" and less on the theoretical or analytical aspect of "discipleship." Five shifts are suggested.

  1. From gospel as "presentation" to gospel as "presence."
    This moves anyone from using the gospel as a tract. The gospel is more than just a message to be sent to the head. It is meant to be a lifestyle, a participating presence, to allow the gospel to be part of the person sharing it, to the person receiving it, and for each other to walk together learning it.
  2. From Learned to Learner
    Recalling that the Greek word for disciple is "to learn," Dukes reminds us that to be a disciple means to learn more and more about the gospel. It is easy to accumulate knowledge without being changed on the inside. It is more important to keep learning of God, instead of simply content to remain on the learned front.
  3. From "Feed Me" to "Feed Others"
    This is a plea for disciples to look more to the interests of others rather than themselves. Discipleship is not about a self-learning kind of a program or concept for one to feed oneself. It is about serving one another in Christ.
  4. From "one is singular" to "one is plural"
    This is a reminder that the community aspect is the essence of a discipleship community. When we make disciples, we are essentially saying that we need one another. This is getting more important in a society that is increasingly individualistic.
  5. From "live for God" to "live with God."
    There is a need to shift away from me-first to God-always. Sometimes, people like to claim they "live for God" as a facade for putting their own lives and needs as priorities. Living with God will move us away from such self-centered attitudes.  

I enjoyed the book's description of the shifts needed to move away from mere "discipleship" to "make disciples." Some people may say these are purely semantics. Others may even say that we need both. The truth is, many people learn best when they see contrasts. Do not read the book with any negative ideas on "discipleship" per se. That is not the author's intent. What the author has done is to bring readers back to a proper understanding of what true discipleship is all about. It is about making disciples.

Rating: 4.5 stars of 5


This book is provided to me free by Exponential.org resources without any obligation for a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.

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