Introduction to 5Q – Old

5Q is a holistic lens by which we can see ourselves, our functions and our churches in a whole new light.  As an interpretative key, is not so much a collection of ideas as much as it is a pair of glasses through which we can see the world (and the church) differently.

Comprehensive descriptions of what is meant by 5Q must be sought in the book, but for now think of 5Q as the capacity to see the APEST typology (apostle, prophet, evangelist, shepherd, teacher) of Eph.4: 1-16 in the largest way possible.  5Q is the art of seeing APEST not just as a prescriptive text to be obeyed, but also as an interpretive key to understanding God’s deeper purposes and design throughout creation, history, and the church.  It allows us to understand APEST in light of the greater purposes built into the whole system.  In the book, Alan locates the origins of APEST in the nature and purposes of God; he then identifies ways in which it is laced throughout creation in archetype and hero; he shows how it is perfectly exemplified in the life and ministry of Jesus; and then how it is bequeathed to the Body of Christ by Jesus in his ascension gifting/commissioning of the Church.

5Q is not some fancy new idea. Rather, it is a deeply biblical idea, but it runs way deeper than we have ever thought.  This is good news because we don’t have to invent it, we simply need to reactivate it.  Reactivating it involves the rediscovery of something that was always there, a latent potential (quotient) in the very being and structure of the Body of Christ.  5Q therefore must be viewed as an intrinsic and irreplaceable part of the very coding of a system that God has designed and embedded into the whole world, but most especially into the Body of Christ through the redemptive work of Jesus–who is the perfect embodiment of the five APEST identities and functions.

The result of seeing the fivefold/APEST like we have never seen it before affords us a comprehensive framework and systemic model that enables us to recalibrate the church’s ministry along more biblical lines.  We can actually identify what ails the church/organization and subsequently develop pathways to re-establish the dynamic ministry of Christ in the Body of Christ.  5Q also provides leaders with a metric to assess the relative functionality (or dysfunctionality) of a local expression of the Body of Christ (read ch.8 in 5Q on Five Marks and the rationale behind the 5Q Tests).

Therefore 5Q provides a scripturally rich way for leaders committed to equipping and releasing the church into God’s redemptive purposes to assess and develop strategy and resources. The system of leadership training, coaching, and tooling we call The 5Q Collective, and here you will find numerous practical tools for developing transformative discipleship,  deepening leadership capacities,  and for processing organizational change.

5Q is…

  • A lens to see ourselves and the church differently.
  • A key to unlock the latent potential in the body of Christ.
  • A way to accessing the power and presence of Jesus’s ministry in and through his body.
  • A set of metrics that enables us diagnose our corporate ills and grow towards greater maturity.
  • A vision of a healed, restored and perfected church which helps us overcome our historical dysfunctional and deficits (Eph 4.12).
  • An elegant, theologically rich, ecosystem in which all of God’s people can thrive in.
  • A biblical pattern of what it means to be the church, to follow Christ, and to be truly human.


Have you finished reading 5Q and want to know some next steps?
Connect in the following ways.

The 5Q Diagnostic Test provides both a tool to assess current APEST capacities. The 5Q systems Test provides a more in-depth analysis that measures the depth of organizational awareness in relation to APEST.

5Q modules which will cover each of the key topics within 5Q and explore personal practices, leadership development and culture change. 5Q tools to develop APEST leadership development, balanced culture and mature churches and organizations.

Short-term (14 weeks) coaching cohorts and longer-term (14 months) training cohorts on 5Q leadership, culture and practice for individual leaders or leadership teams.

Alan has written numerous books on APEST, leadership, mission, and organization.  These include The Forgotten Ways, The Permanent Revolution, and The Permanent Revolution Playbook.  Furthermore,  along with Jessie Cruickshank he has written Activating 5Q: A User’s Guide to Understanding and Applying 5Q in Your Church or Organization. This is a very  accessible summary of many of the ideas of 5Q and provides guidelines about the method and interpretation of the various 5Q Systems Assessments.