The Need for Discipleship

Willard calls discipleship “The Great Omission” in the church today. He denounces American evangelicalism in particular for using grace to excuse discipleship and thereby eviscerating the gospel of its living content, the important call of “learning from [Jesus] how to live my life in the Kingdom of God now.” [From Willard, The Great Omission] Willard accuses the church of truncating the gospel, turning it into what he calls “a gospel of sin management.” He claims that we have reduced life with God to a “bar-code faith,” wherein simply by our verbal confession, we exchange our sins for Christ’s righteousness and thereby acquire our ticket for heaven when this life is over. For Willard, such a gross distortion allows us to miss Jesus entirely. “It is now understood to be part of the good news,” he laments, “that one does not have to be a life student of Jesus in order to be a Christian.” -Rankin Wilbourne



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