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Ancient-Future Evangelism: Making Your Church a Faith-forming Community

, 2003
ISBN: 9781441254160
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How can evangelism produce not only converts but also disciples who grow in faith and become active members of the church?

In Ancient-Future Evangelism, Robert Webber presents a model of evangelism and discipleship firmly rooted in Scripture, attested to in the history of the church, and authentic to the postmodern world in which we live.

Webber surveys evangelism throughout the centuries, tracing the development of the ancient process of Christian formation. He translates that process for the twenty-first century, presenting four stages—conversion, discipleship, spiritual formation, and Christian vocation—that can easily be adapted to various church traditions. He also suggests three practical rites of passage to accompany this “ancient-future” practice of making disciples.

Webber then underscores how the four-fold process of faith formation is interwoven with three theological themes: Christ as victor over evil, the church as witness to God’s salvation, and worship as a witness to God’s mission accomplished in Jesus.

Save more when you get this book as part of the Robert Webber Ancient-Future Collection (4 Vols.)!

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Top Highlights

“The International Consultation on Discipleship defines discipleship as a ‘process that takes place within accountable relationships over a period of time for the purpose of bringing believers to spiritual maturity in Christ. Biblical examples suggest that discipleship is both relational and intentional, both a position and a process.’” (Page 41)

“True Christian spirituality is to live out our baptism by continually dying to sin and rising to the new life in Christ. The work of the church in forming the spiritual life of the new disciple is to train the new Christian in the practice of living in the pattern of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.” (Page 89)

“The missional church, on the other hand, evangelizes primarily by immersing the unchurched in the experience of community. In this community they see, hear, and feel the reality of the faith or ‘catch’ the faith.” (Page 62)

“The fathers of the ancient church recognized that discipleship is a matter of the heart, the will, and the intellect.” (Page 47)

“Postmodern evangelism is not so much an argument but a display.” (Page 63)

A simplistic and reductionist understanding of salvation has led to an obsession with conversion to the detriment of discipleship. Dr. Robert Webber provides a helpful framework to all who desire a deeper perspective on this significant subject. Every Christian disturbed by the lack of depth in the church should read Ancient-Future Evangelism.

—Dr. Appianda Arthur, president, Global Leaders Initiative, Colorado Springs

Hoping to eliminate the distance between salvation and discipleship on the roadmap of faith, recognized worship evangelism expert Robert Webber digs into postmodern thought, as well as church history, to pave a path of evangelism that does not ignore the Great Commission's 'make disciples' command and champions spiritual conversion as a start, not an end.

—Tamara Rice, Outreach

  • Title: Ancient-Future Evangelism: Making Your Church a Faith-forming Community
  • Author: Robert E. Webber
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2003
  • Pages: 224
Robert E. Webber

Robert Webber (1933–2007) was known for his work on worship and the early church. The son of a Baptist minister, Webber was raised in the Belgian Congo where his parents were missionaries. He studied at Bob Jones University, Reformed Episcopal Seminary, Covenant Theological Seminary, and Concordia Seminary.

Webber taught theology at Wheaton College for 32 years and was the Myers Professor of Ministry at Northern Seminary. In 1998, as a part of the Convergence Movement, Webber founded The Robert E. Webber Institute of Worship Studies school which focused exclusively on worship education.

Later in his life, Webber took a special interest in Christian worship practice and wrote and edited more than 40 books on this topic including the Ancient-Future series and The Complete Library of Christian Worship.



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