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Genesis 12:5 records an event early in the life of Abraham. It says,

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In our second look at Restoring the Gospel, we look at what I call "Decision-based Gospeling" and why our current method of evangelism has had a detrimental affect on the church, particularly on our ability to make disciples of our converts. Let's take a brief look at this concept and begin to understand how our current "gospeling" typically creates shallow, ineffective Christians, whereas the Apostolic Gospel will create fully devoted disciples of our Master.

Decision-based Gospeling

"Most of evangelism today is obsessed with getting someone to make a decision; the apostles, however, were obsessed with making disciples." 1

As we continue to re-examine the Gospel, let's examine how our misunderstanding of the fullness of the Apostolic Gospel has contributed to some of the problems within Christianity with which we struggle today.

First, we need to take a look at what I will call Decision-based Gospeling. For much of evangelical Christianity, this is the crux of evangelism. It’s all about finding an open door (both figurative and literal) by which we can “share the Gospel” in hopes that our would-be victims — I mean converts — would hear our message, confess their sins (a sometimes optional step) and make a decision to accept Christ as their “personal Savior.”

Theologian Scot McKnight observes his personal experience at this type of evangelism and sums it up by saying, 

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To what can our current understanding of the Good News be compared? 

Once there was a man who went to a bicycle shop to purchase a new bike. He walked in the store and saw no bicycles. He did, however, see a shop full of wheels and tires. When the shop owner approached, he asked if he had any bicycles for sale. Smiling, the shop owner replied, “We’re a bike shop! That’s what we have! Just look around you … we have bikes lining the walls and covering the floors! Look them over and see if we have something that you can’t live without.”

Confused, the man replied, “I don’t understand. I’m looking for bicycles. All I see is a shop full of wheels and tires. Where are the frames?”

“Aren’t wheels and tires all you need for a bicycle?” the shop owner responded. “They are what make the bicycle go. They take you from one place to another! You can’t get anywhere with a bicycle that has no tires. Frames are optional. It’s the wheel and tire that do the job. They are the real bicycle. How about we fix you up with a bike?”

Mark Twain is quoted as saying that it is much easier to fool people than to convince them they have been fooled. Have we been duped when it comes to the Gospel? What is the Gospel and why is important that we properly understand it? If we really are incorrect in our understanding of the Gospel how difficult will it be for us to recognize and correct our understanding?

Recently, I was asked to be a guest blogger for Derek Leman, a Messianic Jewish leader and prolific blogger in Atlanta, Georgia. I had spoken at his congregation at the beginning of May and he specifically asked me to share my thoughts on discipleship with his readers. I wrote a series of three blog posts breaking down the basics of discipleship, each with illustrations and practical measures for both understanding and pursuing discipleship.

As I have said many times, as disciples of Yeshua, we have the ability to change the world. However, if we are not really a disciple, but only a fan of Yeshua or a believer in Yeshua, then we have no means, no ability to affect change. My teachings on disicpleship are to affect personal transformation and to spark personal discipleship in order that we may be sold out to our Rabbi and begin to change this world for his glory. Here are the three posts. I hope you enjoy.

Part 1

Overview of discipleship and what it means to be a disciple of Yeshua. It contains a list of the Four Responsibilities of a Disciple.

http://www.derekleman.com/musings/guest-blog-becoming-a-disciple-1-by-darren-huckey/

Part 2

Breakdown of the first two responsibilities of a Disciple: Devotion & Memorization.

http://www.derekleman.com/musings/guest-blog-becoming-a-disciple-2-by-darren-huckey/

Part 3

Breakdown of the first two responsibilities of a Disciple: Imitation & Replication.

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Latest Book Review

The Magerman Edition

Author: Daniel Rose & Jay Goldmintz
Publisher: Koren Publishers
Year: 2014

The Koren Ani Tefilla Siddur is one of the latest in Koren’s growing collection of siddurim (prayer books) geared towards a specific demographic. Koren describes Ani Tefilla as “an engaging and thought-provoking siddur for the inquiring high school student and thoughtful adult.” Koren says that Ani Tefillah has been developed in order “to help the user create their own meaning and connection during the Tefilla [prayer] experience.” The name of the siddur is connected with its objective. Ani Tefilla means “I pray.” 

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