Christianity Explored

Christianity Explored
Rico Tice, Barry Cooper, Craig Dyer and the Christianity Explored Team, The Good Book Company Ltd, 2011

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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

One life. What’s it all about? Christianity Explored gives you time to think about the big questions of life, and to explore the life of the person at the heart of the Christian faith – Jesus Christ. Discover the real Jesus on a 7-week journey through the Gospel of Mark. This flexible resource can be used with individuals or groups of any size to present a life-changing message of forgiveness and new life.

What do you get and how?

DVD which features 14 subtitled languages, Leader’s Guide (substantial large A5 format) and handbook. Gospel of Mark. Further information via leaders’ website www.ceministries.org which includes training material for the leader’s team. Latter recommended as whole day training or three evenings. Online version and App available.

Revamped for 2106: ‘Stunning new look. Same trusted content. Flexible for any setting.’

Course is seven sessions long, including a day away:

  1. Good news: What are we doing here?
  2. Identity: Who is Jesus?
  3. Sin: Why did Jesus come?
  4. The cross: Why did Jesus die?
  5. Resurrection: Why did Jesus rise?
  6. Grace: How can God accept us?
  7. Day away – Listen, Ask and Choose; Come and die: What does it mean to follow Jesus?

120 minutes per session including meal/food. Universal, Prison, Youth and Children’s versions available.

Who is it for?

Adult, enquirers

Cost?

£20.00 (DVD); £3.00 (handbook); £9.50 (Leader’s Guide) Kindle editions slightly cheaper.

Review

  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    Very good. Glossy books and engaging DVD.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    Very clear. Background study for leaders also features.

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    Extensive notes, including how to choose a leader, train a team, involve the church, understand evangelism, having the right expectations and put on pre-course appetizer events for non-churchgoers. Training includes: Why evangelize?; Being a leader; identity, mission and call in Mark's Gospel; Getting our expectations right. Pre-course and post-course advice and notes also. Leader's notes aim to prepare leaders in all ways, including dealing with challenging behaviour from group members. Layout very clear and accessible. Simple session format of meal, Bible study, DVD/talk, discussion. Day away focus is on Listening, Asking and Choosing Wisely.

    Who could lead it?

    The course itself advises `Leaders should be mature Christians who are able to teach, encourage discussion and care for guests.' The leader's preparation notes pull no punches in underlining the commitment and effort involved. Team needed too.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    Clearly set-out handbook with space for writing notes. No expectation of prayer, worship etc. Bible study to do between sessions also provided. A few biblical words explained in footnotes.

    How good is any digital material?

    Attractively-produced DVD presented by Rico Tice. Varied backgrounds and images.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    Significant amount – much to read, digest and prepare. Team training and church preparation.

    Is there website support? Links?

    www.ceministries.org for leaders and www.christianityexplored.org for participants. Extra material and publicity included.

    Is it dated?

    No.

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Discussion-based, and honesty encouraged.

    How well does it cater for a variety of both learning and delivery styles?

    Mix of reading, listening, and discussing. All material based on Gospel of Mark. So participants need to find this approach accessible. No hands-on. DVD includes images, not just talking head. Follow-up material for participants has more Bible study to do at home.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    Logical progression through each session but flexibility and response to group encouraged. Talk notes could include adapting material to group, rather than using DVD.

    How well does it encourage people to work together in applying the material?

    Group encouraged to engage with follow-up material in between sessions, with opportunity to bring questions to next session.

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    DVD/talk is based on the biblical theme.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    DVD/talk is more theme-based, but rest is presented in a read-questions-discuss format.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    Focus is on understanding the basic Christian Gospel message, and deciding how to respond.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    Straight-forward evangelical approach. Holy Spirit seen as enabling repentance and life as a Christian.

  • How well does it inspire people towards whole-life discipleship?

    Focus is on understanding the basic Christian Gospel message, and deciding how to respond.

    How well does it encourage and enable people to grow in their faith?

    Material aimed at explaining Christian faith clearly, with no pressure to respond, but opportunity given. God's love and grace are the foundation, but no sugar-coating of message or of cost of becoming a disciple.

    How well does it stretch faith and vision of God and his purposes?

    See above.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    Focus is on understanding and responding to the gospel message. Day away includes opportunity for local Christians to tell their story.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Implicit in structure of course, which involves inviting people to it, and supporting it along the way. Also in the presentation of the gospel which spells out that we must respond one way or another.

    How well does it encourage local or network-based community involvement?

    Not a focus.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    Not a focus.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Implicit as above.

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