Alister E. McGrath: Mere Discipleship

Growing in Wisdom and Hope

Mere Discipleship
(Baker, 2019)

WHO: Alister E. McGrath, the Andreas Idreos Professor of Science and Religion at Oxford University and director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion.

THE BOOK: Mere Discipleship: Growing in Wisdom and Hope (Baker Publishing Group/Baker Books, 2019)

HE SAYS: “I use the phrase ‘discipleship of the mind’ to explore how we follow through on Christ’s command to ‘love the Lord with all your mind’ (Mark 12:30). We need Christians who are confident in and informed about their faith.”

THE BIG IDEA: The book is about how we grow in our faith and how we develop the “mind of Christ”—a distinctively Christian way of thinking about God, the world and ourselves. Christians need to develop their thinking about their faith, just as athletes train for races.

WHY CHURCH LEADERS SHOULD READ IT: This book maps out some ways in which church leaders can help congregants grow in their faith, especially through preaching and wise use of the Creeds. It also includes four case studies of individuals who help us develop a Christian mind: C.S. Lewis, Dorothy L. Sayers, John Stott and J.I. Packer.

WHY CONGREGANTS SHOULD READ IT: Individual Christians will find this an encouraging and helpful resource in thinking through their faith in more detail. It encourages believers by reminding and reassuring them of the solid foundations of their faith, but it also challenges them to go deeper and learn from reading other Christians who can help them grow in faith and wisdom.

QUOTABLE: “Discipleship is rooted in a secure, reflective and deepening grasp of the Christian gospel. This kind of wisdom goes far beyond a simple knowledge of basic Christian ideas. It arises from a deep and prolonged personal reflection on the Christian faith over an extended period of time, informing both thought and action.”

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