Transforming Discipleship

Making Disciples a Few at a Time

by Greg Ogden

Transforming Discipleship
  • Length: 209 pages
  • Published: May 2003
  •  Discontinued
  • ISBN: 978-0-8308-2388-8
  • Item Code: 2388
  • Case Quantity: 48

Many churchgoers complain that their churches lack a coherent plan for discipleship and spiritual growth. In turn, many church leaders lament their lack of resources to build and manage effective programs to help people become fully devoted followers of Christ.

In Transforming Discipleship Greg Ogden introduces his vision for discipleship, emphasizing that solutions will not be found in large-scale, finely-tuned, resource-heavy programs.

Instead, Ogden recovers Jesus' method of accomplishing life change by investing in just a few people at a time. And he shows how discipleship can become a self-replicating process with ongoing impact from generation to generation.

Biblical, practical and tremendously effective, Transforming Discipleship provides the insights and philosophy of ministry behind Ogden's earlier work, Discipleship Essentials. Together, these ground-breaking books have the potential to transform how your church transforms the lives of its people.

"Why are Christians not more like Christ? With all the evangelism, church growth and discipleship programs both critics and lovers of the church around the world ask, where are the transformed lives? Greg Ogden does not claim all the answers. He does point out one important truth: transformation happens not through programs but through highly accountable, mutually encouraging, Spirit-formed relationships. All those concerned about a 'disciple deficit' will find this not only a must-read but a 'must-practice' book!"

Leighton Ford, President, Leighton Ford Ministries

"Greg Ogden has a heart for making disciples. He lives it. He speaks it. He writes it. This book is the mind of Greg's heart and, I believe, is a reflection of Jesus' heart and mind. Jesus wants his church to make disciples in a post-Christian world. This book puts the ministry leader and visionary in touch with today's stark reality—it's time for the whole church to get serious about making disciples Jesus' way. This book will help change our church to be in alignment with Jesus' vision and ministry practice."

Gareth Icenogle, Senior Pastor, First Presbyterian Church, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania; author of The Biblical Foundations of Small Group Ministry

"Greg Ogden supplied us a comprehensive, biblical curriculum in Discipleship Essentials. In his most recent book, Transforming Discipleship, he reveals the foundation and vision. Based on a creative and stimulating triad model, Greg provides a vehicle that will guide the training of leaders who in turn will equip the church and individuals for a life of transformational discipleship. In a refreshingly biblical and realistic manner, Greg sculpts an essential model that goes beyond programs to the intentional development of relationships that are empowered by the Spirit to grow together to become like Jesus."

Michael J. Wilkins, Dean of the Faculty and Professor of New Testament Language and Literature, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University; author of Following the Master: A Biblical Theology of Discipleship

"Greg Ogden's first book, The New Reformation, has had a profound influence on my work. And in Transforming Discipleship, Ogden describes the next stage in American Christianity, the change of emphasis from proclamation to demonstration, with great force and clarity. This is a truly important book."

Bob Buford, Founder and Chairman, Leadership Network, and author of Halftime: Changing Your Game Plan from Success to Significance

"Greg Ogden presents a model for discipleship that really works. We have also discovered the life-changing dynamic found in groups of three. I enthusiastically recommend that you prayerfully apply the principles shared from the crucible of experience. Transformation awaits!"

Dr. Bob Logan, CoachNet International Ministries

"I loved this book. Greg has done it again! Based on a solid, unarguable biblical platform, Greg has lifted up the model of multiplication and reproduction for disciples and leaders, which Jesus and Paul embodied in the Scriptures. "Greg's credentials as a local church pastor give both the credibility and the courage to speak a bold hard truth with a soft clarity: that leaders (by their behavior) have lost sight of the call of the church to go and make disciples. More important, he creates a road map for the process. Transforming Discipleship is a transferable training model, based on Jesus' and Paul's unique and similar adaptive styles of leadership and empowerment, that is so simple it is brilliant. "The New Reformation was the biblical mandate to return the ministry to the people of God. Transforming Discipleship is the biblical mandate to grow and empower the people of God coupled with the model to accomplish the task. "Greg has a unique ability to translate the Scriptures so that the reader can see their relevance in today's world and apply them to grow God's people. Transforming Discipleship is a call to action for all church leaders seeking to honor and embody the Great Commission."

Sue Mallory, author of The Equipping Church: Serving Together to Transform Lives

"After reading Greg Ogden's new book, Transforming Discipleship, the reader is likely to exclaim, 'I can do that!' Greg has cut through the cultural and ministerial fog surrounding this subject and written a persuasive handbook on the priority and process of this essential element. The author's convictions are compelling because he writes out of his own authentic experiencing of the truth whereof he writes. Readers will also recognize this book as eminently practical with helpful explanations of 'whys' and facilitating steps for 'hows.' Finally, through biblical and cultural documentation, Greg has convincingly urged the absolute priority of this focus on transformation in the making of a people who will carry the mission and the message to the next generation. And you can join him in doing that!"

Dr. Julie Gorman, Professor of Christian Formation and Discipleship, Fuller Seminary, Pasadena, California

"I always love Greg's work! He consistently calls us back to the core practice of the church—making disciples. And here he gives us a proven process that is intensely relational, thoroughly biblical and readily accessible to serious disciplemakers."

Dr. Bill Donahue, Executive Director, Small Group Ministries, Willow Creek Association

"Greg Ogden draws on his extensive pastoral experience as well as his interaction with many pastors in the Fuller D.Min. classes to provide an extensive range of biblical principles and practical ministry insights. He establishes the foundations for a reproducible model of discipleship. The issue is urgent and widespread in the churches of North America. This is the kind of book to help make a significant difference."

Dr. Eddie Gibbs, Donald A. McGavran Professor of Church Growth, Fuller Theological Seminary

"While Transforming Discipleship is packed full with good, useful, biblical insights, the two unique features that especially connect with discipleship in a postmodern world are the concepts of triad discipleship and the shift from the hierarchical and authoritative models that dominated discipleship in modernity to 'discipling as a mutual process of peer mentoring.' This work is more biblical and more compelling than anything I have seen to date."

Robert Webber, Myers Professor of Ministry, Northern Baptist Theological Seminary

"Greg Ogden shook up the world of many of us when he wrote the The New Reformation. Now he brings a similar urgency and clarity to the issue of following Christ. Read it at your own risk."

John Ortberg, Teaching Pastor, Willow Creek Community Church

"People are built to last. So why is the church still keeping score of its institutional successes rather than tracking the development of disciples? Greg Ogden's insightful suggestions can help a church redesign its scorecard to celebrate transformed lives."

Reggie McNeal, Director of Leadership Development, South Carolina Baptist Convention


Introduction: A Story of Transformation

Part I: The Discipleship Deficit: What Went Wrong and Why
1. The Discipleship Gap: Where Have All the Disciples Gone?
2. The Discipleship Malaise: Getting to the Root Causes

Part II: Doing the Lord's Work in the Lord's: The Bible as a Method Book
3. Why Jesus Invested in a Few
4. Jesus' Preparatory Empowerment Model
5. Paul's Empowerment Model: Spiritual Parenting

Part III: Multiplying Reproducing Discipleship Groups: Church-Based Strategy for Disciple Making
6. Life Investment: It's All About Relationships
7. Multiplication: Through the Generations
8. Transformation: The Three Necessary Ingredients
9. Practicalities of Disciple Making

Appendix: Frequently Asked Questions


Greg Ogden (DMin, Fuller Theological Seminary) lives out his passion of speaking, teaching, and writing about the disciple-making mission of the church after spending twenty-four years in pastoral ministry. Most recently Greg served as executive pastor of discipleship at Christ Church of Oak Brook in the Chicago western suburbs. From 1998-2002, Greg held the position of director of the Doctor of Ministry program at Fuller Theological Seminary and associate professor of lay equipping and discipleship.

Greg is the author of several books such as Unfinished Business, Discipleship Essentials, Transforming Discipleship, Leadership Essentials(with coauthor Daniel Meyer), and The Essential Commandment. He is a partner in the Global Discipleship Initiative (GDI), which trains, coaches, and inspires pastors and Christian leaders to establish indigenous, multiplying, disciplemaking networks, both nationally and internationally. Greg and his wife, Lily, have been married more than forty-five years and have one adult daughter and two grandchildren.

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