The world we all want

The world we all want
S Timmis & T Chester, The Good Book Company, 2011

£5.99 (Approx)
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Overview

What does it say on the tin?

We all dream of a better world—a world of security, plenty and friendship. Christians believe that God promises just such a new world. And the Bible is the story of what God had done and what he will do to keep that promise.

The World We All Want is for people who are interested in discovering the message of the Bible. It is an introduction to the whole Bible story—the story Christians believe to be the story of our world and its future. And as you start to see how wonderful God’s story is, you’ll also start to see how this story can become yours as well.

You can work through this course on your own, with a friend or as a group. It includes diagrams, Bible passages and places to write your own thoughts and ideas.

What do you get and how?

A paperback book including diagrams, Bible passages and places to write your own thoughts and ideas.

A DVD presented by Tim Chester is available to use alongside the Bible studies including seven sessions and animation:

  1. God promised the world we all want
  2. Jesus shows us God’s new world
  3. We have spoiled God’s good world
  4. God promises a new world
  5. We cannot create God’s new world
  6. We can enjoy God’s new world because of Jesus
  7. Christians are God’s people waiting for God’s new world

There is a Leader’s Guide e-book which downloads: (ePub version (for iPad, iPhone & Android),  Mobi version (for Kindle) or pdf). All can be accessed from the good book company’s website along with an online animation to help tie all the weeks together.

Who is it for?

Small groups, adults, for enquirers, beginners, and those who want an overview of the Bible. The website information says: ‘It is a wonderful evangelistic course, but can also be used as a follow up course to something like Christianity Explored. It is also good for home groups wanting to do a Bible overview.’

Cost?

Paperback: £5.99

DVD/(HD DVD): £12.74/£15.99

leader’s guide ebook: £9.99

Review

  • What is the overall quality of material presentation?

    Attractive book and DVD cover. Good presentation. Thoughtful and clear. A multi-use resource, bearing in mind the different options and overall style.

    How clear are its aims and outcomes?

    Overall aim of connecting the universal longing for a better world with what God promises will be, through the Gospel message and how the Bible views the world. The focus is deliberately on the ‘communal nature of the gospel … that naturally integrates the church into the message of the gospel.'

    How accessible are the leader's notes?

    The leaders' notes are available separately in various formats and the pdf version was reviewed. Option included to give talks in an Alpha style set up rather than use the DVD, for larger groups, if wanted. Talks could also be used in church services. Some good guidance on how to encourage a new group to work well, and welcome newcomers. The material works through from creation to new creation in a light but complete way that sets the news about Jesus against this backdrop. Easy to lead, beautifully clear. Accompanying animation is memorable and helpful. Each session opens with a couple of general questions around the theme and then works through four Bible passages with a couple of questions on each. Comprehensive leaders' notes on each question which are written in the same engaging, light yet thorough style as the book. They include some suggestions for leading the group through each session, based on their likely understandings.

    Who could lead it?

    Anyone with enough leader experience to create a relaxed and welcoming environment for enquirers. The notes in the guide would help with confidence about the material.

    How helpful are the participants' resources?

    Attractive book with Bible texts printed in full. Lovely spaces for notes under each question, designed as a scrap of paper. Exceptionally good questions, both to draw into the subject at the beginning, and after each Bible passage. They start where most people are at, and invite exploration from there. The drawings, linked with the animation, are a great addition to the material. Between-session Bible passage suggested, with a couple of questions.

    How good is any digital material?

    The animation on the DVD links with the drawings which flit along the bottom of each page in the book, and makes a good, clear, memorable and helpful presentation of the Gospel. The talks are static and serious, as they consist simply of each of the authors presenting the session theme for 8 or so minutes, against a grey background. But they are clear and link the Bible story in well with contemporary life and challenges. Thought-provoking.

    How much prep will I have to do?

    Familiarisation with the book, DVD if using and guide would take a while, but is essential to make the most of the resource. As this is an outreach tool, good planning for invitations and the best way to use this resource would also be necessary.

    Is there website support? Links?

    First DVD episode available on Good Book website to preview, plus relevant downloads and shop.

  • How well does it encourage interaction with the group?

    Discussion-based, focusing on the material presented in the book, and DVD or talks if using.

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

    While this is a fairly straight-forward study group presentation, it is a safe and repeating format for people who are new to reading the Bible. The drawings and animation add an extremely helpful visual angle.

    How adaptable is it to my situation?

    According to the introduction in the Leaders' Guide, this course has been use ‘with people of different nationalities, different social backgrounds and different ages'. Its clear format and progression would certainly lend itself to wide use. The animation on the DVD is a memorable and clear presentation of the gospel. The chief limitation is that it would not suit those who would struggle with the read/listen/discuss format, and who might need a more lively style to keep them engaged.

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

    Participants are encouraged to read a passage in between sessions and mull over a couple of questions for the upcoming session theme. Otherwise, application is focused on the session discussions. 

  • How much of the material is Bible-based?

    Most of the session material is based around Bible passages. If you use the DVD as well, the talks expound and explain, in a more theme-based way.

    How well is the biblical material presented and used?

    Bible text printed out in full. Straight-forward reading of the material, plus two questions per passage. Questions are excellent and should promote good discussion.

    How well does it apply biblical material to everyday life?

    A strength of this resource - the questions wrap together understanding of the biblical material with common experiences and thoughts about life. Brilliant.

    Is there a particular theological perspective?

    Firmly evangelical. 

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

    As an outreach course, this looks very usable and the simple yet complete presentation of the Gospel, beginning and ending with concern for the world, is extremely effective.

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

    As mentioned, the great questions would help to draw people in to considering the claims of Christianity, from a familiar starting place.

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

    Good, complete and yet digestible presentation of the whole story of God. The authors have done a great job.

    How well does it connect with real life issues?

    Concern for a better world is an ingenious and attractive starting place, as it connects so well with most people. The questions are unfailingly relatable-to.

  • How well does it encourage personal evangelism?

    Anyone with a heart for evangelism could use this resource with confidence.

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

    Not a focus within the material, but obviously it is doing local involvement by inviting people to the course.

    How well does it connect with global issues?

    From a theological point of view, this looks at the grand sweep of the story of the world.

    How well does it encourage global mission?

    Implicit but not a focus

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