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Rediscovering Discipleship: Making Jesus’ Final Words Our First Work Paperback – October 20, 2015
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About the Author
Robby Gallaty (PhD, New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary) is the Senior Pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville, TN. He was radically saved out of a life of drug addiction on November 12, 2002. In 2008, he founded Replicate Ministries to educate, equip, and empower believers to make disciples who make disciples (replicate.org). He is the author of Rediscovering Discipleship, Growing Up, Firmly Planted, and Bearing Fruit. Robby and his wife Kandi are the proud parents of two sons, Rig and Ryder.
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The first 1/3rd of this book changed my entire perspective on how I looked at Jesus' relationship with his disciples and who they really were. That new understanding, coupled with a spattering of Church history regarding discipleship presented in the 2/3rd prepares you for the "how to" guide presented in the last 3rd of the book.
For the amount of solid information presented in the book I was shocked at how easy it was to read and understand. I am excited to bring this new understanding of discipleship to my small group and implement it moving in the future.
This book is eye-opening and will genuinely change your perspective on Christ's relationship to His disciples.
Across America, other church leaders are coming to similar conclusions. Many are scrambling, trying to find a solutions for the thousands of people walking away from the church and I personally believe (and book sales suggest) a deficiency in discipleship is a major contributor.
Responding to this cultural chaos is a seemingly endless amount of books introducing a solution. Robby Gallaty, Ph.D alumnus from New Orleans Theological Seminary and pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Tennessee, presents his solution with Rediscovering Discipleship: Making Jesus’ Final Words Our First Work which must be considered.
Gallaty begins his book transparently, acknowledging his motive for writing the book is “not to raise the banner of discipleship; it’s a clarion[loud and clear] call for cultivating a deeper walk with Christ” (15). He believes that making disciples is an obedience issue and a byproduct of growing closer to Jesus. Clearly, followers of Jesus would agree that He had something in mind for them following His ascension. All four gospels and the Book of Acts paints this picture calling His followers to replicate themselves through making disciples ( Matt 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16; Luke 24:46-49; John 20:21-22, and Acts 1:8).
Obviously, fully devoted followers of Jesus do not walk away from Jesus…they run towards Him as their take His words seriously. Therefore, something must be done and Gallaty insists that discipleship must be rediscovered and with a return to Scripture it can be accomplished (15).
In Rediscovering Discipleship, Gallaty chose to breakup his thirteen chapters into two major parts. Part 1 is entitled, “Know the Man Before You Go on the Mission.” In seven chapters he explains the Scriptural command and displays discipleship’s place in church history.
Gallaty highlights the reality that Jesus had an intentional plan for making disciples. As His Rabbi contemporaries, he had a four step process for discipleship (29). First, Jesus ministered and his disciples watched him. Second, Jesus allowed the disciples to assist in the ministry. Third, the disciples did the ministry themselves. Finally, Jesus watched as the disciples ministered to others (36).
Part II of the book, “The Method of Making Disciples” is where Gallaty applies the calling of Jesus with the methodology of Jesus to present a model for discipleship in the twenty-first century. In six chapters, he explains what he feels is a biblically informed methodology for making disciples. It is worth noting that his process is not mere theory. The author experienced a similar process led to his own discipleship through International Mission Board President, David Platt. Gallaty would go on to turn his experience of becoming a disciple into his former church, Brainerd Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tennessee, primary means of leading people to become fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ (69).
It is obvious that Rediscovering Discipleship: Making Jesus’ Final Words Our First Work, was birthed out Gallaty’s personal convictions. His passion for making disciples and being obedient to the commands of Jesus is inspiring. From beginning to end, he uses Scriptures, Church History, and the methodology of Jesus to paint a picture of possibility for local churches not mere condemnation.
I can honestly say that I enjoyed reading this book. I found it was refreshing and well written. However, I do have a few suggestions to be considered. First i believe the addition of case studies would considerable enhance and bring further credibility to Gallaty’s proposal. I appreciate hearing how his former church embraced the vision for intentional discipleship, but have other churches experienced similar success from his particular d-group methodology?
A second critique I have is concerning the thesis development. In general, I felt this book was an informative and well written. However, I noticed from reviewing this book something I had not initially noticed while reading. I believe chapters two and three could have been eliminated without his thesis to raise the banner for discipleship. I found the content to be educational but not essential and possibly distracting.
Rediscovering Discipleship joins a seemingly overpopulated but ever-growing list of books responding to dire situation confronting the 21st Century American Church. During a time when so many have suggestions, I believe Gallaty provides a practical and beneficial methodology. It begins a conversation that I believe has the potential to lead followers of Jesus …to take the Words of Jesus…seriously.
Thank you for all the work!
His latest book is yet another tool that can be used to enable believers in a method of discipleship which has proven to work all around the globe. Robby takes a different approach in this book. He begins on a more historical note. The book describes how discipleship which seems to be the "buzzword" of today has actually been around for generations. Not to mention that Jesus just happened to use the same approach.
Rediscovering Discipleship lets the reader see from the Hebrews view and not just that of Western Civilization. We tend to only live in the present, in the moment so to speak. His writings in this book take us back in the past to show us that we aren't the ones who invented discipleship. He then goes on to tell how we can practice it in our daily lives. As in his previous books, replication is the key to successful discipleship. You can take in all the knowledge you can possibly attain but if you don't give it away it is only useful to you.
Read the book, practice the disciplines, spread the Gospel the way Jesus intended.
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