Every January we publish a list of top 10 disciple making books that were published in the previous year. We do not claim that this is a definitive list (it is a “top 10 list”) but our team at discipleship worked hard to find and highlight noteworthy books from last year that will help you to be more effective in making disciples.
The Disciple Making Leader by Craig Etheredge
Jesus commanded His disciples to make disciples, thus creating a disciple making movement. But Jesus didn’t just make disciples, He developed men who would lead that movement. Etheredge argues that the North American church has failed to spark disciple making movements in part because it has failed to raise up leaders in the way that Jesus did. Etheredge lays out a Scriptural and practical plan for developing such leaders. A must read for church leaders.
Real Life Theology Handbook by Daniel J. McCoy and Andrew Jit
This resource has been developed for teenagers from RENEW.org’s Real Life Theology (and therefore teaches conservative Restoration theology). While it can be theologically deep, McCoy and Jit do a good job of using language and word pictures that teenagers will understand. A great resource if you want to lead a group of teenagers or even new adult believers to become theologically grounded.
Navigating the Narrow Way by Curtis Wilson
Other good titles for this book would be Christianity 101, or Discipleship 101. Wilson does a good job of simply, but clearly, laying out what it means to follow Jesus as His disciple. While there is nothing necessarily profound in this book, it gives a basic, quick overview for a new disciple that is both unique and still Scriptural. A good book for a new believer.
Cultivate Disciplemaking by Kevin Blackwell and Randy Norris
The most interesting aspect of this book is that Blackwell begins by connecting the need to be and make disciples to the image of God; and important concept that is often left out of many disciple making resources. After that, the book is basic disciple making. It is brief yet concise. This would be a good book to lead a group of new disciples through.
The Disciple Dilemma by Dennis Allen
Compares/contrasts running church as a business with discipleship. Explores the problems/symptoms and discipleship’s response to each one… things like, converting someone and dropping them off, Christians little different than the world, clergy over laity, or youth leaving the church–boils down to not taking discipleship seriously. The author was a corporate CEO of companies who cares deeply about discipleship. He spends the last third of the book advocating a simple, reproducible, Jesus-style discipleship process.
Following Jesus: A year of Disciplemaking and Movement-Building in the Gospels by Peter Roennfeldt
This book has a similar philosophy to Robert Coleman’s disciple making classic – The Master Plan of Evangelism. Jesus is the example. Follow his example. Disciples are made and movements happen. Roennfeldt presents 5 phases: preparation, foundations, participation, leadership multiplication and movements. This book invites participation through journaling, commitment to share what you are learning, reading through the gospels and coming up with a plan. This would be a great bible study for a small group/discipleship group.
The Language of Discipleship by Dan Leitz and Jim Thomas
Definitions are important in disciple making conversations for everyone, especially church leaders. This book will help leaders who need to think through and capture key definitions and concepts in disciple making for their church or ministry. We previously spent important time working through some of the concepts (definitions) that are tackled in this book with national leaders at (see https://discipleship.org/about-discipleship-org/). It would be very fruitful endeavor for every church.
How to Save the World: Disciple Making Made Simple by Alice Matagora
Matagora is a disciple maker who draws upon a research proect of The Navigators (she is a staff member) and the Barna Group. Matagora writes from both the research data and from her personal experience. This is a very helpful book that invites you to enter Jesus’ plan to save the world wherever you are, through disciple making. A practical, readable and helpful book for those who desire to be more effective at disciple making.
Recreated to Be Like God: Making Disciples in the Image of Jesus by Curt Erskine
The concept of being recreated in the image of God (Jesus) is called Theosis. It is the Biblical teaching that God wants everyone to be transformed, from one degree to the next, into the image of Jesus. Discipleship.org commissioned this book because we believe that this focus makes disciple making a more authentic, more deeply rooted and all-pervasive mission. Erskine’s book calls every church leader to be conscious, all the time, that the goal for everyone in the church is to be like Jesus.
Strange New World: How Thinkers and Activists Redefined Identity and Sparked the Sexual Revolution by Carl R. Trueman
This book is the 2022 popularized version of Trueman’s, The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self, Strange New World. How did the world arrive at its current, disorienting state of identity politics, and how should the church respond? This book explains the historical roots that have given us an era of “feelings over facts,” and “expressive individualism.” This book is an essential guide to understanding how to disciple the minds of North Americans.
We hope that you will find these ten new books to be helpful in your quest to be a disciple of Jesus and make disciples.