Helping Christian converts develop into spiritually mature disciples of Jesus takes more than a church program, said Jo Saxton Wednesday at the 2013 Exponential conference in Orlando, Fla. Making disciples who make disciples requires life-changing sacrifices and for those involved to "have a life worth imitating," said the discipleship expert.
Saxton, speaking before thousands on how Christians can transition from teaching about being a disciple of Jesus to modeling how a follower of Christ actually lives, is a director of 3DM, an organization that trains churches and Christian leaders "to do discipleship and mission in an increasingly post-Christian world," according to the movement's website.
"Are we like the (guardian) or will we be like the parent?" the U.K. native asked her audience, referencing Paul's first letter to the Corinthian faith community in which the apostle distinguishes between being a "paidagogos," a guardian or nanny, and being a parent. more >>
Jim Putman, founder and senior pastor of Real Life Ministries in Post Falls, Idaho, shared Tuesday at the 2013 Exponential Conference what he believes can help churches and their leaders to make genuine disciples of Christ, primary of which, he says, is being sensitive to Jesus' example in the Bible instead of being seeker-sensitive.
"They're not being disciplined," said Putman of spiritually immature Christians. "They're being converted and asked to come and watch."
Speaking before an audience of more than 25,000, participating in person and virtually via a live webcast, Putman focused much of his message on Matthew 16:18, in which Jesus tells his disciple Simon after he declares him the messiah: "And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." more >>
Francis Chan bared some of his struggles with doubt and being a model disciple of Jesus Christ Tuesday during the opening session of the 2013 Exponential Conference attended by thousands in Orlando, Fla.
Chan spoke before 5,300 in-person attendees at First Baptist Church of Orlando, the chosen conference venue, and another 20,000 viewing the event live via the Internet. Chan was the second minister to take the stage to address the need for Christian discipleship, or "discipleshift," the theme chosen for this year's Exponential gathering.
However, instead of delving into his prepared remarks on discipleship, a subject he has been on a mission to revive in churches and faith communities since leaving his California church, the evangelical Christian minister confessed that he felt convicted by the message of the previous speaker, Pastor Jim Putman, on the issue of ministers letting the opinion of others sway their messages and define their work. more >>
"The Bible" is one of the most popular miniseries of all time, and it is now being made into a 3-hour movie by producer Mark Burnett. The show is being reconstructed into a new movie that will hopefully be released in the fall of 2013.
"We're cutting a movie version right now, a three-hour version of Jesus and [we have] many, many offers from theaters globally," Burnett told The Hollywood Reporter. The popular series could be released as early as the fall of 2013, which would play off of the high ratings and sales of the DVD.
Burnett also did not rule out the possibility of a second series that expands upon more stories found in the Bible. more >>
LAKE FOREST, Calif. – Evangelist Greg Laurie filled in for Saddleback Church Pastor Rick Warren during worship services over the weekend and is the first of a string of well-known Christian leaders scheduled to speak from the pulpit while Warren continues to grieve his son's passing. The list of pastors planned includes Francis Chan, Mark Driscoll, Pete Wilson, David Platt, Craig Groeschel, Wilfredo De Jesús, and Doug Fields.
During the sermon series featuring the pastors, they are scheduled to answer the question, "What Does it Mean to Follow Jesus?" Chan, an author and popular speaker at Christian conferences, is planned for next weekend at Saddleback.
Prior to his weekend sermons at the church, Laurie told The Christian Post he wanted to give a message of hope amid grief. The Harvest Crusades founder, who said the untimely loss of his son nearly five years ago gave him a "new ministry," spoke at Saddleback just a little more than two weeks since the suicide death of Warren's 27-year-old son, Matthew. Christopher Laurie died, at age 33, in an automobile accident in 2008. more >>
IRVINE, Calif. – More than 4,000 Christians interested in becoming better leaders packed out the Catalyst West conference held at Mariner's Church in Orange County beginning last Wednesday and ending Friday.
"We were praying that for every leader here this would be a bench mark for them or a marker on the road of leadership for them," Catalyst President Brad Lomenick told The Christian Post backstage at the event. He said that he hopes leaders would be able to look back at the conference and say that it was a significant turning point in their lives.
"We pray that with a fearless sense and an aggressive belief that it is going to happen for leaders individually," Lomenick said. "I feel like that it is happening [at Catalyst West]. The unity, the fun, and the energy are here. It's always here [at Catalyst conferences], but we feel like we dialed it up a bit." more >>