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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Radical by David Platt - study guide

Chapter 1

1. Explain David Platt's (henceforth referred to as D.P.) uneasiness about being referred to as the "youngest megachurch pastor in history."

2. What were the 2 questions he had to ask himself and that we have to ask ourselves? (pg.3)


3. When D.P. came back from his trip overseas , his conclusion was that in America "we are settling for a Christianity that revolves around ________ to ________ when the central message of Christianity is actually about _________ __________." (pg 7)

4. Read Luke 9:57-62. What were the 3 ways Jesus talked people out of following Him?


Read Luke 14:25-33. What were 3 more ways Jesus talked people out of following Him?


Read John 6:53. How did he talk these people out of following Him?

Read Mark 10:21. How did He talk this person out of following Him?


Read Mark 1:16-20. How did He unsucessfully try to talk these disciples out of following Him?


5. Read 1Kings 19:19-21. When Elisha received the call  to follow, what did he permenently need to leave behind?
6. Read Psalms 50:21.What is the danger when we say,"Jesus didn't really mean that like it sounds."?

7. What is the cost of our nondiscipleship to the rest of the world?

 What is the cost of our nondiscipleship to us?                  

Chapter 2
1. Read pages 23-26. D.P observes that millions  of believers  gather around the world and have" no ________ _______, no ________, no ________, no _________, no __________ ________, no __________ or ____ _______ buildings, just the _______ of _____, and the ______ of _____." What do you think his point is?

2. D.P. started a "Secret Church" night as his church. Describe this. Is this something you would be interested in going to?          Why or why not?                                                                     

How often would you like to go to one of  these?                                                             

3. D.P. talks about the primary reward of the gospel on page 28. What do you think the American Church and culture teaches is the primary goal of the gospel?                                                                

4. Read the following verses and comment on what they say is the primary goal of the gospel? 
Genesis 15:1                                                                                                             
Deut. 10:8,9                                                                                                          
John 5:39,40                                                                                                           
John 17:3                                                                                                          
Francis Chan quotes John Piper in "Crazy Love" Chapter 6;      “The critical question for our generation—and for every generation—is this:  If you could have heaven, with no sickness, and with all the friends you ever had on earth, and all the food you ever like, and all the leisure activities you ever enjoyed, and all the natural beauties you ever saw, all the physical pleasures you ever tasted, and no human conflict or any natural disasters, could you be satisfied with heaven, if Christ was not there?”—John Piper, God is the Gospel (Wheaton, IL:  Crossway, 2005)  
How would you respond to that quote?                                                                                       

5. In the middle of page 29, D.P. states, "God hates sinners." What was his reason for making that statement?                                                                                                                       

Do you agree with him?                                                                                                         
Read the following verses and comment on what they say about our condition before Christ;               
Rom. 5:10                                                                                                          
Rom. 8:7,8                                                                                                         
Eph. 2:1-3                                                                                                        
Eph. 5:14                                                                                                                                                                                 
Gen. 8:21                                                                                                         
Eph. 4:18                                                                                                          
2Cor. 4:4                                                                                                         
John 6:44                                                                                                          

D.p. attacks modern evangelism, essentialy the "4 Spiritual Laws" on page 32. Look at these laws below and tell what he doesn't like about them. Do you agree?

  1. God loves you and offers a wonderful plan for your life. (John 3:16, John 10:10)
  2. Man is sinful and separated from God. Therefore, he cannot know and experience God's love and plan for his life. (Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23)
  3. Jesus Christ is God's only provision for man's sin. Through Him you can know and experience God's love and plan for your life. (Romans 5:8, I Corinthians 15:3-6, John 14:6)
  4. We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know and experience God's love and plan for our lives. (John 1:12, Ephesians 2:8,9, John 3:1~8, Revelation 3:20)
Explain his illustration on page 33 in your own words.

6.According to the top of 34 and the bottom of 36 into 37, how does he say modern Christianity is presenting the gospel as "going up the hill".?

7. Read Luke 22:41-44. What does D.P. say Jesus was anguishing over in the garden?

What was the "cup"?

8.What does he say the Biblical gospel is? (Look on the 2nd to last paragraph on page 36 and the top of 39)?

How does he say we should present it on the middle of page 32?

9. In conclusion he says on the bottom of 39, " and I can't settle for anything less than a ______ _______, ______ ______, _______ _______ gospel"

What does he say God gives us to enable us to live this radical, Biblical gospel?


1. James Truslow Adams coined the term "American Dream" in 1931. It is spelled out on pages 45 and 46 as "a dream in which each man and woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are _________ _________, and be _________ by _________ for _______ _______ ______." According to D.P. what is the dangerous assumption that we unknowingly accept in the "American Dream"?    

Read the following verses and tell how they contradict the self empowerment of the "American Dream"
John 15:5                                                                                             
Colossians 1:29                                                                                    
Daniel 4:29-31                                                                                     
Zech. 4:6                                                                                             
1 Cor. 2:5                                                                                           
Psalm 20:7                                                                                                
Psalm 127:1                                                                                      
Isa. 10:12-15                                                                                    

What is the goal of the American dream?  (pg.46)                                                                     
Read Luke 12:16-21. How was this "fool" living out the "American Dream"?             

What is the goal of the gospel?   (pg.47)                                                                                
Read the following verses and tell how they confirm your answer;
Psalm 106:47                                                                                     
Eph. 1:12                                                                                          
2 Thes. 1:11,12                                                                               
Ex. 15:2                                                                                         
2. Discuss the following Old Testament stories and how God made sure He got the glory rather than man.
Joshua and Jericho                                                                       
Abraham and Sarah  (compare to Gal.4:28-31)                                  

3. Today, D.P. says we can build a mega church with schemes and plans using our own power and intellect virtually absent of the Holy Spirit's power. What are the 4 "P's" he lists that are necessary to build a church in our own strength?(pg 49)

Read Gen. 11:1-9. How does this relate?

 Read Acts 1:4-8 and Acts 4:13. How did Jesus build His church?

What do the following verses show us about how the church was built?
Acts 2:41
Acts 2:47
Acts 5:14
Acts 11:24
Acts 13:48
4. Read about George Mueller on pages 54-56 and/or other sources. What was  one thing you learned about him?
How is his story similar to Raden's in the beginning of the chapter?

5. Read John:14:12-14. On pages 56-59, D.P. comments on what those "greater things" are. List some of them;

Finish his quote on page 59: ..."a rock solid promise that the _______ of ________ are ready and waiting for the _______  of ______ who desire to ______  ________ of Him in this world."

6. According to page 60, what is the difference between planning in the Spirit and in the flesh?

Chapters 4 and 5

1. According to the following verses, what was the twofold reason God made us?
2 Tim. 1:9-11
Gen. 12:2,3
Ps. 67:1-7
Titus 2:13-15
2Cor. 9:13,14
Rom. 1:5
Jer. 15:19
Page 69, D.P. says, "God blesses His people with extravagant _________ so that they might ________ His extravagant __________ to all ________ of the _________."

2. God loves me is the essence of Biblical Christianity   T  or   F. Explain your answer.

3. On page 73, D.P. talks about the priviliges of Christianity and the obligations of Christianity and says there is a disconnect. In what ways have you seen distinctions made between the two?

Read the following verses and tell what the obligation of Christianity is;
Romans 1:14-15
Ezek. 33:7-9
Matt. 28:18-20

How isn't that accomplished? (pg 87,88, 92)
How is it accomplished? (How did Jesus do it? pg. 88,90, 93)
How does Cuba do it? (pg.104)

4. D.P. breaks down the great commision into 4 parts. What are they? (pg.103)

5. On page 104 he says,"Our version of the American Dream ends up disinfecting Christians from the world more than discipling Christians in the world." Explain what he means by that.

6. D.P gives a number of examples of people he knows living radically in these chapters. Read their accounts and pick one that resonates with you the most and explain what moves you about their story.
Steve (pg. 74)                                                          
Daniel (pg. 79)                                                        
Jeff (pg. 80)                                                             
Ed and Patty (pgs 81,82)                                        
Jamie (pgs 83,84)                                                  
Jim and Kathy (pg. 91)                                           
Robert (pg. 91)                                                      
Holly (pgs 91,92)                                                   
D.P. (pgs 94-96)                                                   
Jim (pg 98)                                                          
Matt (pg 101)                                                      

CHAPTER 6        

1. What was the "blind spot" in the church 200 years ago?                          What does D.P. say is today's blind spot?

2. ___ billion people live on less than ___ $ a day.

3. Read the following verses on the poor and summarize what they say.
Proverbs 19:7,17
Psalms 140:12
James 2:5
1Sam 2:7,8
Psalm 10:17,18
Ex. 22:21-24
Deut 1:16,17
Prov. 28:27
Job 34:28
Psalms 68:10
Psalm 35:10
Psalm 82:3
Psalm 113:7

4. D.P., on page 110 says, "...if there is no sign of caring for the poor in our lives, then there is at least reason to question whether Christ is in our hearts. Read the following passages and explains how he gets there.
Matt. 25:31-46
1John 3:16-18
James 2:14-17

Is he saying we are saved by taking care of the poor?

5. On page 111 he compares sexual immorality to not taking care of the poor. Is that a fair comparison?

Why does he say we use church discipline on one but not the other?

6. Read Luke 16:19-26. Who do you identify with in this story?
D.P. says on 114(bottom) "... if you and I have _____ ______, _______ over our heads, ______ to wear, _______ to eat, and some form of _________, then you are in the top ____% of the world's people for wealth."    Are you rich?

How many children does he say die of starvation or preventable diseases while we meet in church on a Sunday morning?

7.Briefly summarize what you see as the difference between the OT and NT in regards to ammassing wealth.

8. Every year we spend ____ billion dollars on church buildings in the U.S. The real estate owned by churches in America amounts in worth to _____ billion dollars.

9. Read Mark 10:17-22. According to D.P., what are the 2 errors made in interpreting this passage?

When the rich young ruler referred to Jesus as "good teacher", what was that indicating?

Read Luke 12:32,33. According to D.P. on page 122, what 3 things does this passage indicate?

10. Read 1Timothy 6:6. What is the challenge to us as "rich" Christians?

11. Why was Wesley convicted about the painting he bought?

Is it wrong to have luxuries?         What is the point we can learn from this event in Wesley's life?(pg. 127)

What did he do with his income to manage his wealth "Biblically"? (pg.128)

12. Calvin once said that _____ of the Church's funds should be allotted specifically for the poor.

13. D.P said we should stop asking "How much can I ______," and start asking "How much will it _____?"

14. Besides putting a "cap" on our income like Wesley did, what else can we do with our wealth to live Biblically? (pg 127)

How did the family on pages 131 and 132 practically demonstrate that?

15. On page 136, D.P. says we are in a war. What is the war we are in?

16. D.P. says, "The way we use our money is a barometer of our present spiritual condition." Look at your checkbook or credit card statement for the last month. What % of God's money was spent on you?

17. D.P. says on page 138 "The mark of Christ followers is that their ______  are in ________ and their ________ are _______ there."

Chapter 7

1. D.P. talks about intellectual universalism and practical universalism. Briefly describe what those are.

Do you fall into either category? Explain.

2. He says all people on the Earth have a knowledge of God. Do you agree? Why or why not?

3. Next he says we all reject God. What verse does he use for that?
According to page 145, what is the best we can accomplish worshipping God on our own?

4. What verse(s) does he use to show all people are guilty before God?

What about the innocent native in Africa who has never heard the gospel?

5. People go to Hell for which of the following reasons;
A. Rejecting God
B. Rejecting the gospel
Explain the danger of believing the wrong one.

6. If faith in Christ is the only way to get saved, how did people in the Old Testament get saved?

7. On page 156, D.P. breaks down God's redemptive plan from Romans 10:13-15
Fill out the plan; _____ ______ ____ _______ ->  ____ _______ ______ -> ________ ______ ->

_________ _______ -> _________ ______ > __________ _____ _______ __ ________.

At which point can this plan break down?  

Acording to D.P. on page 159, in light of the above, where does the injustice lie if the unreached people of thisworld diewithout ever hearing of Christ?


1.Read Matt. 10:8. What was the first Risky situation that Jesus was sending his disciples into?

How does that relate to us in the 21st century?

2. Read Matt. 10:16. What analogy did Jesus use?              

Familiarize yourself with the account of the evangelization of the Batak tribe.

3. Read Matt. 10:21. Familiarize yourself with the account of Sahil's wife.

T or F If we would just become like Jesus the world would love us.
What is the scandal of the "fish symbol" in the 21st century. (page169)

4. Explain how the Church has become like the SS United States?

5. What is the difference between the rewards offered by the American Dream and what Christ has to offer?
How does God frustrate the physical attacks against us by Satan?

6. T or F We should be more afraid of God than people.
7. The one fundamental truth that the lives of John Paton, Jim Elliot, and C.T. Studd illustrate is what?

The key to achieving this is to realize this world is not ____ _____.

Paton said he would rather be eaten by ________ than _______.
Jim Elliot said "he is no fool who gives what he cannot ______ to gain what he cannot ______."


1. What are the 5 components of the Radical Year Experiment? (a-e)
Read Matt. 9:36-38. When Jesus saw the number of lost souls around him, what did He tell the disciples to do?                                               What resource does D.P. reccommend we use to accomplish this? 
On page 191 D.P. says, "The battle is intense, and it cannot be fought with _____ ______ in a ______ _______ or ______ _______ from a preacher on Sunday." Do you agree that this happens?

What are D.P.'s 6 guidelines for where to give your sacrifices


What % of your time does he recommend you give this year?
If it costs $2500 to go on a 1-2 week mission, wouldn't it be better to just send that money to the poor of that country? Why or why not?

Once we commit to a local body, what should be our goal in that body? (pg 206,207)


Week 1 - intro

                                                                      Week 2
Check out Francis Chan's 4 spiritual laws, below. The 2nd video shows a tribe receiving the Bible for the first time. Do you want to give your life to make something like that happen?

Ravi Zacharias tells the following account. How bad do you want the Bible?

                                                  CHAPTER 3
More reading The Power of the Spirit by William Law and David Hunt and Classic Christianity by Bob George

Chapters 4 and 5 Messages 9/9/7 and 9/23/7. The best ever on the glory of God and our purpose.  Great message on discipleship and starting small

Good books to read on the subject  The Hole in our Gospel by Richard Stearns, Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger by Ronald Sider

Check out this sight for a summary of what the Bible says about the poor.

Cornerstone treasurers report
Francis wrestles with building a church; will it be outdoors for the sake of the poor?


A little dated (1987) but still true, R.C. Sproul talks about The "Innocent" Native in Africa

                                                           Chapter 8

Here are a couple clips on the topic. The second are 6 controversial quotes (or ideas) from the chapter. Consider dividing the room in half and have one side argue for and one side against like PTI or Around the Horn

                                                                        CHAPTER 9


  1. Hello there ... I'm a local Seviervillian as well. I had not heard of DPs book until recently and the title keeps popping in front of me. Maybe The Lord is leading me to something. I guess I'm just so sick of the 'doing in order be' mentality from most of the post modern church types that I'm reluctant to give him a chance.

    Do you have a 'secret church' going on?? :-)

  2. Dr. K,

    My name is Graham Page and I am one of the Elders at Triad Christian Fellowship in Winston, Salem, NC ( We are starting a home study group on "Radical" and came across your study guide posted here on your blog and wondered if you would grant us permission to use it for our home group studies.

    Please let me know, thanks.
    Graham Page

  3. Hey, I would be honored for you to use it. Let me know how it works and any suggested revisions. And Andy, no secret church, sorry :)

  4. Thank you very much. I sent a note on FB before I checked out here, sorry. We appreciate the use and I will definitely keep you appraised on how it goes and any notes.

    Graham Page