How “The Revolutionary Disciple” Helps Churches Navigate the Seismic Cultural Shifts of Today

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By Chad Harrington

We are witnessing cultural chaos in the West unlike any time in recent memory, and Christians are wondering what to do on various issues.

  • What do we do about mask mandates?
  • How do we handle freedom of speech challenges?
  • What happens when the government asks us to do something with which we disagree?
  • Should we come under the authority of those who believe differently or live out our convictions?
  • How do our “rights” as Americans and our “rights” in Christ fit into this discussion?

What Is the Way Forward?

In our book “The Revolutionary Disciple,” Jim Putman and I help Christians navigate cultural changes with humility above all. We walk readers through the Five Spheres of Discipleship and unveil the four core practices of humility along the way. Using Scripture and personal stories, our book uncovers the path to ultimate peace for Christians who want a cultural revolution.

Our vision is to help you take ground for your church, your family, and the kingdom and to bridge the gap between the call to follow Jesus and the commission to make disciples of Jesus.

Join the revolution. Learn to walk humbly with Jesus in every area of life.

Preorder the book at 28% off here, and learn more about it below.

Learn more about the following by continuing with this article:

  • The problem of pride for discipleship
  • How humility dissolves pride
  • A 6-week teaching series through Ephesians
  • Why this book is the 2021 Forum theme book
  • How to use this book for discipleship
  • What people are saying about “The Revolutionary Disciple”
  • About the authors

The Problem of Pride

The genesis of “The Revolutionary Disciple” came from our own journeys with pride.

Jim was about to leave his church due to a conflict that seemed beyond resolution, and his pride reared its ugly head, nearly causing a division among their leadership. But God convicted Jim and showed him the path of humility.

My dad and I had reached a dark place in our relationship, and my pride had played a major role. But recognizing this pride led to healing in our relationship.

Both Jim and I have seen how humility can bring life, and we’ve realized we’re not the only ones who need that truth.

In fact, pride is a human problem, and it destroys discipleship at every level.

Pride:

  • Keeps us from following Christ
  • Isolates us from the church
  • Keeps us from asking others for help
  • Tempts us never to follow but always to assert ourselves as the leader
  • Makes for a toxic family culture at home through posturing
  • Leads to our abusing our position of authority at work
  • Causes rebellion among employees against their managers
  • Keeps us from making disciples
  • Makes us think we’re the exception—that Jesus’ commands are for everyone but us

That’s how pride destroys discipleship at every level.

What can we do?

The Solution Is Humility

If pride is the problem, then the solution is humility.

And we learn humility from Christ. Jesus said, “Come to me. … Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matt. 11:28–29).

The only way we can learn humility from Christ is to come to Christ, take his yoke, and learn humility from him.

If pride kills discipleship, humility makes it sing, and it must sing in every area of life.

Jesus helps us know what humility looks like in all of life.

  • What does humility look like as we abide with Christ?
  • How do we walk humbly at church among leaders we disagree with?
  • How do we handle disputes while engaging in sports?
  • How do we handle disagreements at home and at work?
  • Do we rebel against the authorities or submit to them?

The Revolutionary Disciple” answers questions like these and more.

“The Revolutionary Disciple”: A 6-week Teaching Series Through Ephesians

We designed “The Revolutionary Disciple” to be used by leaders for a church-wide teaching series campaign. Thus, we created a suite of resources that churches can license. This suite helps leaders:

  • Plan a 6-week discipleship sermon series through Ephesians around this book
  • Order bulk quantities at discounted rates
  • Download the free suite of resources for your team

The free suite of resources includes:

  • An outline for a 6-week teaching series through Ephesians based on the outline of the book
  • 63 discussion questions for small groups
  • Teaching outlines for preaching and teaching
  • Branded presentation graphics for slideshows
  • Ready-to-use social media graphics

Request access to “The Revolutionary Disciple” suite of resources here.

Learn more about the book here.

Why Is This the Theme Book?

Discipleship.org chose this as the theme book for 2021 because it is about the cost of discipleship in the major areas of life. (The theme of the conference is “The Cost of Discipleship.”)

The subtitle of “The Revolutionary Disciple” is “Walking Humbly in Every Area of Life.”

“Every area of life” refers to the Five Spheres of Discipleship.

Here are questions we seek to answer to give you an idea of what we mean by each sphere.

Sphere 1: Abiding in Christ

  • What does humble listening look like “in Christ”?
  • What is the “yoke of Christ”?
  • How do we humbly abide?

Sphere 2: The Church

  • What is the “me and Jesus” mentality and how can we avoid it?
  • What is the minimum requirement for a church to be considered a church? That is, what is a biblical “ecclesial minimum”?
  • Should we submit to church leaders who “don’t get it”?

Sphere 3: The Home

  • What makes for a humble family?
  • How can we walk humbly with our spouse?
  • What does humility look like for a parent?

Sphere 4: The World

  • When politics and religion collide, how do we respond? Should we “rebel” against the authorities like Peter and John did in Acts 4?
  • Or should we submit to them as Paul instructs us in Romans 13?

Sphere 5: The Spiritual Realm

  • How do we navigate spiritual warfare today?
  • Does pride play a part in losing spiritual battles?
  • What does humility in battle look like?

These five spheres comprise every major area of life in which Christians need to display the humility of Jesus.

The only lasting change comes through Christ, and he changes us through discipleship.

How to Use This Book for Discipleship

Now that you know what the book is about and how you can use it for your church, here’s what you can do:

If you’re a church leader, and you want to review the book before purchasing it for your church, you can request early access to “The Revolutionary Disciple” by emailing the publisher here.

1. Read the book for yourself first, at least the first four chapters (the introduction through Chapter 4).

This will give you a good sense of the book.

Buy a copy here, and get started! Remember, it releases September 22.

2. Take your church through it.

See the section immediately below about how you can lead a 6-week teaching series through Ephesians using this book.

3. Utilize the teaching series suite of resources as you invite your whole church into it.

Our publisher developed a suite of resources with outlines, slides, and discussion questions for your small groups, to which you can request access.

As mentioned, if you are a church leader thinking about doing a teaching series through the book, you can request access to “The Revolutionary Disciple” suite of resources here.

What People Are Saying About “The Revolutionary Disciple”

A comprehensive discipleship strategy for your home, work, and church. You’ll benefit greatly from reading this book with your discipleship group or church staff.
— Robby Gallaty, pastor and author of “Replicate”

A long overdue call to us as leaders to humble ourselves before the Lord and the people we lead.
— Ed Litton, pastor and president of the Southern Baptist Convention

This incisive book is provocative and well worth the read.
— Carol M. Swain, PhD, editor of “Be the People News”

Read more endorsements here.

About the Authors

JIM PUTMAN is the senior pastor of Real Life Ministries in Post Falls, Idaho. He holds degrees from Boise State University and Boise Bible College and is the author or coauthor of various discipleship books, including “Church Is a Team Sport,” “Real-Life Discipleship,” and “DiscipleShift.”

CHAD HARRINGTON is the owner of Harrington Interactive Media and a teaching deacon at Harpeth Christian Church in Franklin, Tennessee. He holds degrees from Ozark Christian College and Asbury Theological Seminary and is the author of “Your Spiritual Formation Plan” and a coauthor of “Dedicated.”

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