Ok, I know you are reading my title and thinking that I may be on the payroll, but really I am not. I have briefly had 20 second conversations with the authors at conferences in the bookstore areas, but that is the extent of their personal influence. Now that being said, there are a few reasons why I have become a huge fan of this book.
One, When Mark Dever speaks about Church, we listen.
Two, before I knew anything about anything and couldn’t even spell pragmatism I began to hear whispers about this book from some key leaders at church.
Then Boom! I had a conversation about church ministry and discipleship with our pastor and the concept clicked, both biblically and logically before I read the book.
If you are looking for a way to grow your church in numbers and gain buzz and hype in the community, don’t grab this book. If you are hoping to launch the latest and greatest process that will organize your church into a well oiled ministry machine, don’t grab this book.
But if you are looking for a book that takes a hard look at the customary ways “we do church” buy it now! For too long churches have been operating like large corporations with central command and top down structures, committees and programs that organize and drive ministry and keep busy looking busy at good christian stuff (we call it missions) but all the while they are failing at doing the imperative in the one command that churches that contain all of the Christians are specifically commissioned to do. Christians are called to Go and Make Disciples, churches are commissioned to equip them and gather them for community and worship of our Lord.
The Trellis and the Vine has identified the root problem of too much business and influencing chaotic structures where authentic community and missional relationships are almost impossible to find, build or maintain and the book reorients the focus on the main thing. Making Disciples.
They have reoriented, refocused, and reprioritized the purpose on people, interaction, relationships and personal investment in the lives of others to make disciples. They have turned corporate to organic and have shown us that the vine growth is the objective, not the size of the trellis it grows on.
I would like to say Matthias Media, the publisher, has done an exquisite job with materials to accomplish just that.
Check the book out here and be sure to browse around!
In order to make disciples you must evangelize the lost, they provide Two Ways to Live for that and that is our go to gospel tract and presentation.
In order to mature the converted Christians gathered in a personal discipleship relationship, they have One-to One Bible Reading (which is practical for any Christian) to guide them in bible study.
And to guide the leader, both the ordained and layperson in the church, to a biblical model of ministry and discipleship, they have The Trellis and the Vine.