The Radical Disciple, by John Stott, is divided into 8 chapters covering different aspects of discipleship: non-conformity, Christ-likeness, maturity, creation-care, simplicity, balance, dependence, and death. The audio version, which was supplied to me by ChristianAudio for review, is read by Grover Gardener. In my opinion, his narration style is perfect for this type of book.

Stott does a fantastic job of articulating real abandonment in the pursuit of Christ. His chapters on non-conformity, balance, and death alone made the book worth reading. The problem with listening to an audio version is that there are so many quotable sentences that I found myself wishing for a hard copy to refer back to. Because of Stott’s style, there are also sentences where a hard copy would have been useful in order to stop and dissect sentences and spend some time contemplating them.

There are two critiques I would offer for the book. 1) The chapter on creation-care seems to push the limits toward environmentalism (though it could be just my reaction to our current culture’s fascination with “global warming”). He makes some good statements, and I wouldn’t want to throw the baby out with the bath water, but the extent to which he takes the subject feels a bit too much. 2) The chapter on simplicity left me a little disappointed. He highlights materialism earlier in the book, stating that he’ll deal with it more in-depth in the chapter on simplicity, but instead of some type of biblical exegesis (where Stott excels) he re-prints a statement from the International Consultation on Simple Lifestyle. Stott easily could have done so much more with that chapter.

Overall, I would recommend the book, if nothing more than for those excellent chapters I mentioned above.

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