Review: The Compelling Community: Where God’s Power Makes a Church Attractive

The Compelling Community: Where God's Power Makes a Church AttractiveThe Compelling Community: Where God’s Power Makes a Church Attractive by Mark Dever
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is an excellent blend of biblical teaching and practical experience. The main thrust of this book has to do with the kind of unity a church ought to have. Churches can be like social clubs where the unity is built around similarities, whether demographic or special interests. Other churches have mere unity on a shared confession of faith, or distinctive doctrinal points. Both of those are common and both of those fall short of the mark of communal unity of the Lord’s churches in Scripture.

Dunlop uses the term “supernatural community” to describe the kind of church community taught in the New Testament. I’m not thrilled with that term, but the way he uses is right on. He also goes not to explain why there is no program to implement to have that kind of community. Pastors and church members will be benefited by reading, thinking, and praying through this book. The unity of the church membership should be working out in visible ways in terms of evangelism, discipleship, and even discipline.

View all my reviews

Review: The Church: The Gospel Made Visible

The Church: The Gospel Made VisibleThe Church: The Gospel Made Visible by Mark Dever
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Some parts of this book are better than others. His main point is good along with various things pertaining to congregationalism, membership, leadership, and discipline within a church. Other areas are problematic like the relation of Israel, the kingdom, inferences from history, and reference to the “universal church.” The “universal church” is a misnomer that is as unhelpful as it is unbiblical. Even though he conceded the “universal church” can be found in early writings but not in the New Testament, he continued to use the term. I appreciate the main point that the further we get from Scripture concerning how we define, structure, and function as a church, the more we obscure the Gospel.

View all my reviews

Currently Reading

View at Amazon.com

Or, view on Christian Book Distributors

23213: Hollywood Worldviews: Watching Films with Wisdom & Discernment Hollywood Worldviews: Watching Films with Wisdom & Discernment
By Brian Godawa / Inter-varsity Press
433312: Elders in Congregational Life: Discovering the Biblical Model for Church Leadership Elders in Congregational Life: Discovering the Biblical Model for Church Leadership
By Phil A. Newton, Mark Dever / Kregel Publications
7846367: Genesis in Space & Time Genesis in Space & Time
By Francis Schaeffer / Inter-varsity Press
71524: Through Gates of Splendor Through Gates of Splendor
By Elisabeth Elliot / Tyndale House