In this much-anticipated book, Colin Marshall and Tony Payne answer the question they have been asked countless times by pastors and church leaders all around the world since the publication of The Trellis and the Vine. The question goes like this:
"Look, I've read your book, and it expresses what I have always thought about Christian ministry. But as I kept reading, I had this sinking feeling that what actually happens in our church is still a long way from the kind of disciple-making ministry vision you outline and that I believe in. So my question is this: What can we do about it? How can we shape the whole culture of our church around disciple-making?"
In The Vine Project, Marshall and Payne provide a roadmap and resources for this sort of church-wide culture change. The book guides your ministry leadership team through a five-phase process for growth and change, with biblical input, practical ideas, resources, case studies, exercises and projects along the way. You will be helped to:
The Trellis and the Vine proposed a "ministry mind-shift that changes everything". The Vine Project shows how that mind-shift can and must shape every aspect of what you are doing as a congregation of Christ's people to make disciples of all nations.
It’s the sequel to "The Trellis and the Vine" (2009). Though it includes a fresh restatement of the earlier book, it stands on its own. The central premise, accurate and convicting, is that churches tend to slide imperceptibly into trellis maintenance (systems, structures, programs, and so on) to the neglect of vine-cultivation (spiritual vitality through speaking the Word to each other). The Vine Project supplies the “how” to the earlier book’s “what”. I’m immediately suspicious of books that claim to chart a way toward spiritual health through programmed steps. But this book succeeds and can’t be written off as frothily naïve in its articulation of four stages to nurture a disciple-making culture in our churches. Encouraging, realistic, accessible, non-formulaic, theologically conscientious, pervasively biblical.
—Dane Ortlund, "Most Important Books for Pastors from the 2010s"
The biblical principles of discipleship and 'disciple-making' outlined in 'The Trellis and the Vine' should be worked through in all our churches with every member. This most helpful sequel provides not only further expansion on the vital principles of Christian service, but also valuable practical lessons on how to generate a whole church culture of 'learner-disciples'. The biblical material is excellent. The practical tips are instructive. The everyday examples put real flesh on the bone.
—William Taylor Rector, St Helen's Bishopsgate, London
This is a unique book - it somehow manages to be relentlessly biblical, deeply challenging, utterly realistic and profoundly encouraging at the same time. Col and Tony have not only thought more about the life of the local church more than anyone else I know, they have also listened to people (especially pastors) from all over the world, and so have produced a book which is thoroughly humble, sane, flexible and practical. 'The Vine Project' models a way ahead which is both radical and manageable for the local church, and rather than making me feel guilty or depressed, reading it invigorated me and refreshed my passion for gospel ministry 'on the ground'!
—Gary Millar Principal, Queensland Theological College Chair, The Council of The Gospel Coalition Australia
Six years in the writing and sixty years in the making. I don't think you'll find a better book on discipleship and church growth, which marries firm Biblical foundations with extensive practical advice. Clear, sensitive, and thought-provoking 'The Vine Project' will continue to enhance the global revolution in church life and ministry begun with 'The Trellis and the Vine'.
—Mike Raiter, Director, Centre for Biblical Preaching, Melbourne
'The Vine Project' takes you beneath technique and program to the heart of what matters in church life. And it does this in a way that is immensely practical. The book is so helpful, I think I can offer an ironclad guarantee that if you and a leadership team work through this book, things will change for the better. I guarantee there will also be pain! But it will be healthy pain.
—Andrew Heard Lead Pastor, EV Church, Erina, Australia Director, Geneva Push church planting network President, Fellowship Independent Evangelical Churches
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