A collection of training materials from training with other trainers and church planters Neil Cole, Jim Yost, etc.
In the early church, disciples of Jesus embraced five core spiritual gifts ― apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers. The world was set on fire as a result. Over the past two thousand years, however, some of these gifts have been neglected or set aside, and we’ve forgotten what we’re capable of.
This is a great book on how the dynamics of a fivefold team has helped release organic, missional movements in the last 20 years.
If you're interested in how the 5-fold can and have been practically operating together, Primal Fire is a great book co-authored by practitioners who have walked the talk for the last 20 years and brought tremendous impact that is far more real than the religious hype of many flashy ministries.
This is the book that started it all for us. Coming from over 30 years of institutional "churched" background, there were a whole lot of questions and issues we were grappling with - water baptism, communion, structure, doctrine, finances, etc. The insights from Scripture and experience shared in this book helped tremendously.
Church 3.0 was a catalyst in our journey.
Churches have tried all kinds of ways to attract new and younger members - revised vision statements, hipper worship, contemporary music, livelier sermons, bigger and better auditoriums. But there are still so many people who aren't being reached, who don't want to come to church. And the truth is that attendance at church on Sundays does not necessarily transform lives...if we want to connect with young people and those who are not coming to church, we must go where people congregate. Cole shows readers how to plant the seeds of the Kingdom of God in the places where life happens and where culture is formed - restaurants, bars, coffeehouses, parks, locker rooms,and neighborhoods. "Organic Church" offers a hands-on guide for demystifying this new model of church and shows the practical aspects of implementing it.
Do you feel that something is amiss with the way you play church? Feel tired, burnt-out or disillusioned by how church ministry seems more like running a corporation?
I was in that boat. Serving in "full-time ministry" at a megachurch and running programs week after week to build the church's brand name and grow attendance. Until I started reading the Bible without the blinders of "Churchianity" taught in many Bible schools and churches. The book of Acts and the Epistles clearly show how New Testament life as a disciple of Jesus in the community of the body of Christ looks like and it is vastly different from modern-day Christianity. In fact, church and Christianity today look more like the very Pharisaical system that Jesus spoke against and came to deliver us from!
Read Pagan Christianity for a well-organized comparison of Biblical vs current paganistic church practices. It is so compelling that I could not put it down, read it all at one go through the night and was re-reading and taking notes for months after. Let the truth set you free!
Using "7 Signs in John" tool in a Discovery Bible Studies (DBS)
John 20:30-31 (NKJV) "And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name."
This tool is particularly helpful to pre-believers who are interested in the Bible and interested in knowing who Jesus is. Through facilitating reading 7 Signs, and asking these questions, it is designed to help them discover Jesus as God.
They are also framed in such a way to encourage SIMPLE OBEDIENCE and also SIMPLE SHARING by a new/pre-believer to others in his/her community.
In this way this tool seeks to:
1) be personally applicable (and does not end up as a bible study that focuses on just giving information/head knowledge)
2) be simply sharable by a seeker to his/her community.
The Seven Signs are:
- Changing water into wine at Cana in John 2:1-12 - "the first of the signs"
- Healing the royal official's son in Capernaum in John 4:46-54
- Healing the paralytic at Bethesda in John 5:1-17
- Feeding the 5000 in John 6:1-14
- Jesus walking on water in John 6:16-25
- Healing the man blind from birth in John 9:1-41
- The raising of Lazarus in John 11:1-46
Questions to Ask (that will encourage discovery and also multiplication):
1) What does this passage/story teach us about Jesus?
2) What does this passage/story teach us about people?
3) What does this passage/story say to you about you? Or Which person do you identify with in this story?
4) What do you think you can do differently this week?
5) Who do you know who needs to hear this story/who can you share this story with?