Pastor Matt Recommends The New Christians DVD Curriculum.

Posted: March 9, 2011 in Uncategorized

Gabe Lyons, the founder and President of Q: Ideas (qideas.org), co-penned the influential book Unchristian: What a New Generation Really Thinks about Christianity…and Why It Matters (Baker 2007).  Unchristian argued from a series of poll findings that Christianity has a series image problem among Generation-X and Generation-Y.

 According to Unchristian, the average 16-40 year old in the western world believes Christianity is too political, fosters the hatred of homosexuals and encourages seemingly normal folks to become judgmental hypocrites. 

Ouch.

In his new book, The Next Christians: The Good News about the End of Christian America (Zondevan 2010), Lyons argues that there is hope for the faith in a post-Christian Coalition America.  Lyons introduces readers to several Christians who have been provoked rather than offended by contemporary culture.  These Christians have used their God-given talents to influence rather than just oppose. 

Now, the folks at Zondervan have produced a small group DVD curriculum to accompany the book.  The DVD is broken down into six roughly 15-minute segments–“The End of Christian America,” “Restoration Thinking,” “Provoked to Engage,” “Creators Who are Called,” “Grounded and in Community” and “Counterculture for the Common Good.” 

Lyons opens each session with a brief introduction before interviewing leaders like Tim Keller, Andy Crouch, Scot McKnight, Phyllis Tickle, etc.  I found myself disagreeing (sometimes strongly) with some of the interviewees like Tickle and McKnight but such a spattering of voices from across the evangelical spectrum should provoke deeper group discussions.   

I also received a participant’s guide that helpfully included the names of the interviewees and notable quotes from each session along with the various reflection questions.

I am not a huge fan of most small group curriculum but The Next Christians is excellent (my wife, who is even a tougher critic than I remarked favorably on it).  We have used several group discussion programs at Revolution Church and many have been disappointing but Zondervan has been on their game lately with the very good The Reason for God DVD and now The Next Christians, which may take the cake as the best on the market.  I highly recommend it.

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