I must confess that I found the first portion of D.A. Carson’s book Cross and Christian Ministry to be stronger than the later. Here are some excerpts that I noted in the latter portion which focus primarily on Christian leadership and the heart that guides it.
- If the church is being built with large portions of charm, personality, easy oratory, positive thinking, managerial skills, powerful and emotional experiences, and people smarts, but without the repeated, passionate, Spirit-anointed proclamation of “Jesus Christ and him crucified,” we may be winning more adherents than converts.
- The world pants after strong leaders, but leaders in the church must first of all be servants of the Lord Christ.
- Christian leaders do not try to be independent gurus, all-wise teachers. They see themselves simply as servants and want other Christians to see them that way, too.
- Leaders are not in a special, priestly class. Rather, what is required in some sense of all believers is peculiarly required of the leaders of believers.
- What it means to be a servant of Christ is to be obligated to promote the gospel by word and example, the gospel of the crucified Messiah. That is absolutely fundamental. There is no valid Christian leadership that does not throb with this mandate.
- Mere orthodoxy is not enough; Christians must live out their creed. The gospel of the crucified Messiah must transform not only our beliefs but our behavior. Biblical Christianity embraces both creed and conduct, both belief and behavior.
- We must not stand on our rights. As long as defending our rights remains the lodestar that orders our priorities, we cannot follow the way of the cross.
- to follow the crucified Messiah means Paul must take up his own cross daily, die to self-interest, and serve the One who bought him. One cannot properly promote the gospel any other way.
- Where there is a failure in discipleship, where there is sin against Christ, where there is persistent refusal to follow Paul as he follows Christ in the way of the cross, there too we find an aimless meandering.
I am now reading a book on evangelism written by Mark Dever titled The Gospel and Personal Evangelism. I would love to have other recommendations in this area of Evangelism. I have already read To Tell The Truth by Will Metzger. Please feel free to post suggestions.