One of the main issues in the American churches these day is what it means to be a disciple. Many of the conferences being held and books being published are on about discipleship and how to become a disciple who makes disciples. Among those vocal about discipleship, David Platt is probably the most popularly known because of his books about being a “radical” follower of Jesus. His recent book Follow Me is similar in message to his Radical books, but is more specifically focused on discipleship.
If you’ve heard Platt speak recently, you’re probably familiar with the message of this book. Essentially, it boils down to the idea that many Christians are either being deceived or deceiving themselves when it comes to being a real disciple/follower of Jesus. Many people think they are Christians because they prayed a prayer or were baptized. After that, however, they are not changing their lives to look like Christ. They continue on with their life the way it was before. To become a follower of Christ means that your life is different than it was before.
I believe that this is a message that Christians need to hear. Being a disciple is not only about making the decision to follow Christ, but also about actually following him. Much like in Radical, Platt is not afraid to be brutally honest about how Christians are living and how they should be living. He urges us to follow through with our commitment of being a disciple and live up to the call to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Christ.
That being said, the majority of this book is brutal honesty and primarily about what we are doing wrong. What he writes is needed, but while reading the the book it seemed like it was written against what is happening and not for what could be happening. There is discussion of what needs to happen in the last few chapters, but it felt out of balance. In his discussion of what we are doing wrong, I believe he is right in calling us to reexamine some of these potentially harmful practices that we have adopted.
Even though it is a bit harsh, Follow Me is still a very good book and gives us a needed reminder that following Christ does not end at baptism. Christ calls us to more than just a decision to accept his forgiveness. He asks us to follow him and tell others about him.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers through netgalley.com. 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 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”