Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Our Last Great Hope: Awakening the Great Commission – Ronnie Floyd

© 2011 Thomas Nelson, Nashville

Ronnie Floyd is the long-time pastor of Cross Church of Northwest Arkansas. Aside from that, what makes him qualified to write a book outlining the practical application of the Great Commission? You ask. In 2009 and 2010 he led a team charged with studying the Great Commission and recommending to the Southern Baptist Convention churches the best ways that we as a convention of churches could address and implement the last command of Christ in a practical and lasting way. Consequently, this year-long intimacy with the Commission opened the eyes of a pastor who wholeheartedly supported the concept of the Great Commission to the need for the modern church to practice that Commission effectively and daily.

The book begins at the historical point of how the early church began by carrying out the command as a natural outgrowth of their encounter with Christ. As history played itself out in and around the church, somewhere and somehow the church fell asleep. Now, Floyd says, is the time for the church to wake up and be about what we are called to be: witnesses to the entire world, making disciples of all nations.

Our Last Great Hope is filled with excellent examples from a variety of sources that teach us why and how we can wake up to the Great Commission—or more appropriately why and how we can awaken the Great Commission within the church.

I found the text both encouraging and inspiring. I think, if you are a Christ follower, you will too. This is not a simple “how to” book teaching us a step by step process in fulfilling the Commission. Instead it is a mirror into which Christians can gaze to see if their life is a life dedicated to and characterized by Great Commission living. In order for the church to be actively involved in pursuing the Great Commission Floyd suggest that we start with ourselves—do we know the Master who issued the commission, and are we living for Him? Then he moves to how the individual Christian is a part of a family, a community, and yes even a church that must be about reaching a lost and dying world.

This involvement requires not only resolve to do it, but also funds to do it. Even more, it fills us with the expectation of God to do what He can and will do, when we step out to do what He has commanded us to do—which is far more than we could and would do under our own strength. Certainly, pastors should read this book. Beyond that, all Christians should read this book—not as a substitute for the Commission itself (which we find when we study the Bible) but as a wake up call to re-acquaint ourselves with the job that Christ has given us.

Four and one-half out of five stars.

—Benjamin Potter, August 10, 2011

[Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”]

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