An online course that stresses the importance of physical community. Like a temperance drive at the brewery, or a zumba class at your local KFC.
We’ve wondered about this for along time. Does the online course medium (one person sitting alone in front of a computer) undermine part of the Discipleship Explored message (committing to a local church is essential to discipleship)?
Well, today I’m thrilled to announce the launch of Discipleship Explored Online. So let me explain why Christianity Explored Ministries have taken this step.
1. Since Discipleship Explored was first published in 2005, we’ve been looking for ways to reach more people with the radical, joy-filled vision of Philippians. Paul was writing to a church whose unity and witness were threatened by in-fighting, persecution and imprisonment. And now that message seems even more timely than it did ten years ago. His letter to them reads even more like a letter to us. We want as many people as possible to be prepared for persecution, and still experience the kind of unshakeable joy Paul had.
2. Another consideration. Though a church-based course is ideal, they’re not always practical in every case, and for various reasons: erratic schedules, health factors, not to mention the difficulties faced by isolated believers living in countries where churches are being shut down or driven underground.
That’s why Discipleship Explored Online has been developed. And we’re thrilled to be partnering with BibleMesh, the people behind online courses from the Bethlehem Institute and the Porterbrook Network, among others.
By the way, this is more than a simple “port” of Discipleship Explored. There are things we can do online that would be impossible in an offline course, so even seasoned DE users will find plenty of new stuff to enjoy.
Finally, I want to give special mention to Louanne Enns and Eileen Nitao who’ve poured so much time, energy and creativity into making DE Online happen.
Keep an eye on Future Perfect over the next few weeks, as there’ll be some DE Online related giveaways.