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Thursday, June 20, 2013

"The Gospel Disciple" (David Putman)

TITLE: The Gospel Disciple
AUTHOR: David Putman
PUBLISHER: Exponential Resources, 2012.

[Free ebook available here.]

This ebook seeks to answer three fundamental questions.

  1. What is the Gospel?
  2. What is a Disciple?
  3. What is the Church?
Beginning with a frantic phone call from a Church leader in Haiti, to help disciple the workers there, Putman starts to wonder about the rediscovery of the gospel mission not just in his own Church, but the American Church context. The big problem he identifies is this. Belief is one thing. Be willing to follow and put that into action is another. Thus, the order in answering the three questions become very significant.

A) The Gospel

This announcement of good news need to be RE-discovered. The gospel is not something earned but given. It is redeemed in Christ. We are saved by grace. It also renews us. We grow when the truth of the gospel transforms us. When the gospel is written into the hearts of people, we will be excited to tell our story, our testimony, and our lives of these three things: How we are redeemed in Christ; how the Spirit continues to restore us; and how we ourselves can be agents of restoration for others. Being a gospel disciple is about sharing this journey with others.

B) The Disciple

Our mission as gospel disciples is to make disciples. That is also the mission of the Church. It is not a program. It is a way of life to become the disciple that you want others to become. In other words, live by example. Live like Christ. Live for Christ. This calls for a constantly renewed focus to learn, to live, to loge, and to lift up the Name of Christ. Just like the saying: "Hurt people hurt people. Loved people love people." We need to let our mission for God flow out of God's love for us.

C) The Church

The third question is about living together as a community of Christ. The body of Christ is the Church, and not the institutional structures that many of us have come to refer the Church as. It calls for prayer for one another in the faith. It calls for caring for the least of the people. It calls for planting the gospel, just like Christ. For Putman, to be a "Gospel Disciple" means building the Church around the disciples, instead of building disciples around the Church. Let the Church be the strengthener of the relationships. Build a gospel community and link up with other gospel communities. Here are some of the suggestions in "rediscovering Church."

  • "Re-discovering church is less about gathering and more about scattering."
  • "Re-discovering church involves shifting power from the center to the edges."
  • "Re-discovering church involves hitting the reset button."

In other words, let the Church be one that is more concerned about reaching out, about touching outside, instead of worried about inner church life and about internal concerns. Let the Church empower others who are serving people at the edges. Let the Church constantly be renewed, and not try to keep things status quo.

The instructions are short and sharp, and will be useful for Church leaders, planters, and laypersons to read and apply straightaway. The pointers can also be good conversational starters.

conrade

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.

2 comments:

  1. The author of this book is actually David Putman...not Jim Putman. Jus FYI

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi,
      Thanks for the note. I've corrected it.

      c

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