The Community of Jesus

The hub—or the center—of the church’s mission is verbal proclamation of Christ’s saving work and his offer of salvation to those who believe in him. If Christ and his atonement are removed from the center, the wheel collapses. 

Bruce Ashford

Some food for thought on what the bible says about the church.

A bargain on Kindle at 99c or 99p. 

Now for the time to read it….

“The Community of Jesus: A Theology of the Church”

Assessing the health of a new church start

Chuck Wood explains the difference between a group and a healthy church.

The lost gospel of St Patrick

Screen Shot 2016 01 05 at 9 55 41 pm

According Andrew Clements the 3Circles gospel presentation is pre-dated by St Patrick’s shamrock presentation.

A life wasted on ordinary people

IMG 1708

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realised that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus.

Acts 4:13

Recently I read an academic paper criticising the use of “unqualified” ordinary people as leaders in disciple making movements. I got mad and wrote a response, but wiser heads prevailed and I didn’t send it.

Around the same time a friend reported in from somewhere in Asia. He’s training unqualified people to multiply disciples and churches. He doesn’t like his same splashed around so we’ll just call him “Mr Smith”.

Hi Steve

Today in XXXX, three more days with this group.

Today a class for some former Muslims some former Buddhists, two still Buddhist, two totally illiterate but good evangelists, one foot amputee from a land mine. One handicapped both feet and one hand, he has one usable hand and arm.

About half and half women and men. Many good testimonies of miracles. Some have been run out of their village about five active army personnel, two former Buddhist priests and one former lay director of a Buddhist temple.

Five languages and many ethnic groups. Two languages have no written scripture yet.

The food is good, and it’s not too hot which is blessing. I have a good translator.

Final day will be Christian wedding opportunity to set precedents.

Mr Smith

Now when I think of that article I bring these folk to mind. They are the future. They have the qualification of having been with Jesus.

My friend is in his seventies and he’s going on strong. He has spent his life training ordinary people to multiply disciples and churches. He could spend all his days on the golf course, or on a beach somewhere. He’s earned the right.

What are you going to do with the rest of your life? Why not waste it on ordinary people.

Carter’s stuff

Coxfamilyonmission com

Check out Carter Cox’s first-rate resources for multiplying disciples and churches.

Look for his training videos and resources to download.

A great book on coaching leaders

Keith Webb is top coach of leaders and trainer of coaches. 

You get his wisdom on coaching for just 99c or 99p on Kindle.

“Coaching In Ministry: How Busy Church Leaders Can Multiply Their Ministry Impact” (Keith E. Webb)

The centre of world Christianity is …. Niamey?

Centre of World Christianity 2015

Until today I had never heard of Niamey, the capital of Niger. According to the Economist it is the demographic centre of world Christianity:

Just 70m of Western Europe’s 375m adults attend church at least once a month. Meanwhile, in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America, the church appears as strong as ever. There are 277m adherent Christians in sub-Saharan Africa and 250m in Latin America. As Christianity has shifted southwards, that has moved the centre of Christianity to Niamey, the capital of Niger (calculated by taking the Christian-adherence weighted-average latitude and longitude of countries’ capital cities). As the crow flies that is 2,433 miles from Bethlehem.

Q. If someone from Nigeria is a Nigerian. What do you call someone from Niger?

A. A “Nigerien” (nee-ZHER-yen).

Wheaton professor decides that Christians and Muslims “Worship the Same God.”

Screen Shot 2015 12 26 at 2 31 14 pm

Why would a Christian academic at an evangelical college equate the God revealed in the Qur’an and the God revealed through Jesus Christ? Why shouldn’t we be surprised when it happens?

In the lead up to Christmas, Larycia Hawkins, a Wheaton professor donned a purple headscarf in solidarity with Muslims and declared that Christians and Muslims worship the same God.

Wheaton stood her down, not for wearing the hijab, but “to explore theological implications of her recent public statements.”

Wheaton, an evangelical college, does not teach that the God of Islam is the same God of the Christian faith.

Hawkins has stood her ground. Wheaton College students have staged a sit-in at president Philip Ryken’s office.

Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? It can be arranged.

Remove God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, deny the Incarnation, the Cross and the Resurrection, affirm salvation through your own efforts and you could possibly equate the God of Islam and the God revealed by Jesus Christ. Alternatively, you could take both Islam and Christianity seriously. You will soon find that they are different faiths with very different concepts of God.

Movements are born and maintained through commitment to a cause. When people stop caring, a movement begins to fade away. Our modern-postmodern society does not share our commitment to Jesus Christ as Lord. We can make peace and be accepted if we’ll just stop insisting on his uniqueness.

We face that pressure every day. It’s nothing new.

Jesus laid down his life for claiming he was more than just another religious teacher. Paul found that the message of the Cross was unacceptable to both religious fundamentalists and immoral pagans. So he proclaimed a foolish message in weakness and God did the rest.

Jesus Christ alone is Lord and Saviour of the world. Stake your life on it, expect trouble and you will see God’s glory revealed.

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus discounted on Kindle

“Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity” (Nabeel Qureshi) (US: $2.99, UK: £2.99)

How to do a House of Peace search this Christmas

Matty Hawthorne from Ivy Church in Manchester UK shares How to do a Christmas House of Peace Search.