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Choose The Life


Out-dated (?) evangelism/discipleship systems that don't work anymore EE, 4 ... Cheap grace without repentance. Hull's Thesis ' ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Choose The Life

Choose The Life
  • Exploring a Faith that Embraces Discipleship
  • Bill Hull 2004

Setting the Stage
  • The sky is falling! or The Church is in a
    world of hurt. (Barna)
  • The studied routine of religious activity
    without change. (Hull, 16)
  • Out-dated (?) evangelism/discipleship systems
    that dont work anymore EE, 4 Spiritual Laws,
    Navigators 2-7.
  • The intellectualization of Christianity
  • Cheap grace without repentance

Hulls Thesis
  • When the church goes deep, we get real
    transformation there will be revolution . . .
    revival . . . reproduction . . .
    multiplication. (61)
  • The key to inner transformation is making the
    spiritual disciplines habit forming. (74)
  • It is vital that the discipleship movement and
    the spiritual transformation movement merge into
    a balanced tour de force to advance the kingdom.
    (44, n. 2)

Jesus Idea of Discipleship
  • Obedience
  • . . . Learning from him how to doeasily
    and routinely dothe very things he said for us
    to do. Obedience is the only sound objective of
    a Christian spirituality (6)
  • Natural obedience vs. trying to obey
  • Apprenticeship learning how to do the Great

The Problem of the 21st Century Church
  • Our inability to be what we advertise ourselves
    to be
  • Our unwillingness to leave all things behind and
    follow Jesus wherever he leads.
  • Separation of salvation from discipleship
    (justification from sanctification)
  • Generation of a fringe Christianity mentality

Hulls Solution Summarized Five Dimensions of
  • Believe what Jesus believed (transformed mind)
  • Live as Jesus lived (transformed character)
  • Love as Jesus loved (transformed relationships)
  • Minister as Jesus ministered (transformed
  • Lead as Jesus led (transformed influence)

Hulls Definition of Discipleship
  • . . . Believing what Jesus believed, living the
    way Jesus lived, loving the way Jesus loved,
    ministering the way Jesus ministered, and leading
    the way he led. (18)
  • Reconnecting belief and behavior
  • Faith as not just mental agreement but commitment
    to follow Jesus (29)

The NT Model of Discipleship
  • A disciple submits to a teacher who teaches him
    or her how to follow Jesus
  • A disciple learns Jesus words
  • A disciple learns Jesus way of ministry
  • A disciple imitates Jesus life and character
  • A disciple finds and teaches other disciples for
    Jesus (36)

The Need for a New Model
  • The classic discipleship that has been practiced
    in the past fifty years has done much good. But
    it falls short in that it has been too
    programmed, too superficial, and frankly too
    passé for many leaders. Fill-in-the-blank Bible
    studies and check-off lists have ceased to appeal
    to new generations. (45)
  • Agree/Disagree??

Choose the Life Society
  • When I called my fellow Christians to choose the
    life, I told them that it included submitting to
    at least one other person. I told them that the
    days of arms-length, nondiscipleship
    Christianity were over. The rest of the staff
    and I called on them to make that commitment, and
    over one hundred of them did. It was a starting
    pointa place to stand and to begin. We started
    our own Choose the Life Society, composed of
    those who made a public declaration to take up
    their cross and follow Jesus. (37)

The Habits of the Life
  • See Dallas Willard, The Spirit of the Disciplines
  • See Richard Foster, Celebration of Discipline
  • The key is accountability to one other person
    Attachment to at least one other person is
    absolutely essential. (69)

The Disciplines
  • Disciplines of Abstinence
  • Solitude
  • Silence
  • Fasting
  • Frugality
  • Chastity
  • Secrecy
  • Sacrifice

The Disciplines (Spirit of the Disciplines, 158)
  • Disciplines of Engagement
  • Study
  • Worship
  • Celebration
  • Service
  • Prayers
  • Fellowship
  • Confession
  • Submission

Another Source for Hull
  • Bill Thrall, Bruce McNicol, and Ken McElrath, The
    Ascent of a Leader (San Francisco Jossey-Bass,
  • Relationships of grace in environments of grace
    (Choose the Life, ch. 7, pp. 127-156)
  • Climbing the character ladder instead of the
    capacity ladder (pp. 46, 140, 144)

The Capacity Ladder
  • Relationships of power leverage
  • Environments of mistrust ungrace
  • Steps to success
  • Discover what I can do
  • Develop my capacities
  • Acquire title or position
  • Attain individual potential
  • If it doesnt work here, pack up and take it

The Character Ladder
  • Relationships of grace
  • Environments of grace
  • Steps to discovering my destiny in Christ
  • Trust God and others with me
  • Choose vulnerability
  • Align with truth
  • Pay the price
  • Discover my destiny

The Costs of Character Formation
  • Humility
  • Submission
  • Obedience
  • Suffering/maturity

Capacity Character Integrated
  • See page 144, The Ascent of a Leader

Back to Hull A Bottom-Line Question
  • When the people we have depended on are not
    there anymore, will God be enough? (170)
  • . . . The lesson from Jesus is that when our
    support system is gone, our relationship with God
    himself should be sufficient to motivate and
    sustain our staying in the mission. (171)

Hulls Thesis Restated
  • A transformed life is needed, a life of depth of
    true disciples who have chosen to follow the life
    that Jesus lived. The reason the mission
    languishes is the acceptance of a nondiscipleship
    Christianity that creates shallow believers with
    hollow lives who dont affect those around them.
    This has led to the marginalization of the gospel
    and has retarded its spread because of its lack
    of authenticity and power. (215)

So, How Does It Look In Real Life?
  • The Old Way
  • I am filled with the Spirit
  • Therefore, whatever my desires are, they will be
    blessed by God
  • I have an idea, create a strategy, seek counsel,
    raise the money, recruit the personnel, set a
    timetable, and launch
  • Tweak, learn, tweak , learn, make sure it grows,
    and if not, figure out why fix it (205)

So, How Does It Look In Real Life?
  • The New Way
  • Silence, solitude, time alone with Goddwelling
    in His presence and building passion for Him and
    sensitivity to the Spirit
  • See God working out in front of me pray about
    that path
  • Ask God for a desire consistent with the proper
    path (Phil. 213). Is He putting His will in me
    for some good work?

The New Way (contd)
  • Ask God directly about my desires and ideas.
    Listen to Him through Scripture, counsel of
    others, and circumstances
  • Ask for Gods confirmation about the right path,
    through supply of resources, personnel, and
  • Take action!

A Possible Barnian/Hullian Integration
  • Filled with the Spirit
  • Time alone with Godlistening to Him
  • Seeing God at work in front of me
  • Ask God for His desires to be mine (Phil. 213
    Prov. 35-6)
  • Allow the idea to come from within, brought out
    by the Holy Spirit, counsel of others,
  • Seek confirmation by the Holy Spirit, supply of
    resources, personnel, opportunity
  • Take action modify as necessary along the way

Learning Community Questions
  • Obedience is the only sound objective of a
    Christian spirituality. (Dallas Willard,
    Foreward to Choose the Life, p. 6).
    Agree/Disagree? Why?
  • How are justification and sanctification
    different? What might it look like to bring
    these two aspects of our Christian life back
    together as Hull advocates (p. 12)?
  • How would you address the problem of carnal
    Christianity that Hull describes (p. 26)?

Learning Community Questions
  • Is service in the local church a measure of ones
    spirituality? Service in the community? If
    neither one adequately measures spirituality,
    what does? How transferable is this to newer
  • Compare and contrast becoming a disciple and
    making disciples.