by Jim Putman: If you have read my books or posts or listened to my sermons, there should be no doubt in your mind that I believe discipleship begins with and is sustained by relationship. However, disciple makers also must be ready to give an answer, defend the faith, and teach their disciples the truth of the Bible in a world determined to provide a culture that is dramatically different than the one Jesus left for us.
The Bible needs to be our starting point, and it needs to remain our compass and guide for every step along the way. We live in a time when we have access to unlimited resources for spiritual growth- but we need to be wise in what resource we choose and make sure it is aligned with God’s word.
I have put together some resources that I believe are both helpful and aligned with the Bible’s teaching – you won’t know everything when you begin to disciple people, but the following resources are a good starting place.
I have listed several books for different topics below.
Sharing with the Spiritual Dead:
Unbelievers often have serious questions about complex issues. Many times our best answers will be our stories of how God has changed our own lives – we also need to be ready with answers to some of the tough questions spiritually dead people might ask us about faith and life itself.
(I am linking the books to Amazon – however we are not affiliated so feel free to purchase them wherever)
Defending the gospel:
I Don’t Have Enough Faith To Be An Atheist.
The Case For The Resurrection Of Jesus
The Reason For God; Belief In The Age Of Skepticism
Know Why You Believe
Evidence That Demands A Verdict
The Case For Christ
Simply Christian: Why Christianity Makes Sense
Authority of Scripture:
How Christianity Differs from Other Faiths
Dealing with Past Hurts
Spiritual infants need a disciple maker to share life with them, to help nurture and protect their new spiritual life. They will need help to see two key aspects of their new faith.
The spiritual realities behind the world they see (a Biblical Worldview)
How spiritual transformation happens
Developing a Biblical Worldview:
Jim Putman, author of this blog, has written with Chad Harrington a primer called The Death of Discipleship about the danger of pride and importance of humility in disciple making. Download this free resource here.
Connecting with Spiritual Children
Children are generally eager to learn, and a wise disciple maker will help connect them with teaching that will help them grow. Spiritual Children should not be spoon-fed – this is a time where they are beginning to learn how to feed themselves. Offer suggestions and guide them, and if necessary, help them digest the bigger pieces of what they are learning.
Who They Are in Christ
How to Have a Relationship with God
Maintaining Healthy Relationships
How to Spiritually Feed Themselves
The Importance of Connection:
A Growing Understanding of the Church
Ministering with Spiritual Young Adults
At this stage of spiritual growth, disciples generally have a circle of influence in their ministry. As you disciple spiritual young adults, you may find that many of the previously selected resources continue to be helpful now a deeper level of study and discussion.
Doctrine and Theology:
Boundaries: When to Say Yes, When to Say no to Take Control of Your Life
Your Money Counts
Rich Christians in a Age of Hunger
Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial, and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives
Leading Small Groups, Identifying Spiritual Gifts
Dealing with Gender Issues:
Written by Jim Putman
This was originally posted on Jim Putman’s blog here. Used with permission.