Through this book I have come to relish my promotion from Church Leader to run-of-the-mill brother. It is a small step for man but a giant leap for eternity and no doubt of greater benefit to the church. Had I not read Frank Violas Untold Story of the New Testament Church and Pagan Christianity I might have been put off by the Title of Reimagining Church simply because in my view, much of the malady of the church today is as a result of too much imagination and too little sound doctrine. Thankfully inside the cover of this book the only imagination is in the skill, simplicity and very readable style of the writer, the doctrines presented are soundly based on Scripture and the freshly imagined church is very true to her original design in the New Testament.The transition from Institutionalised Christianity, with its dedicated ordained professional leaders to the Headship of the unseen but very present Christ in the midst of the twos and threes gathered in His name is sometimes a scary and unnerving prospect, which exposes and belies our dependence upon these men rather than the one who alone is worthy to be the Head of the church.Reimagining Church is a masterpiece providing a loving, well researched, spiritually insightful transition from religion to a life in Christ and provides a fresh view of the power, glory and simplicity of the church of Jesus Christ. This book is an essential follow on to Pagan Christianity, which dealt a death blow to a lot of Christianized pagan practices in modern Christianity and left the reader standing in the Garden of Eden with no fig leaves. Reimagining Church, provides spiritual insight into the true covering that God has provided those He redeemed from the Garden of sin, by unpacking the simple but profound operation of the New Testament church, with its organic leadership,the centrality and supremacy of Jesus, its Head and the practical operation of the priesthood of all believers.
Frank Viola is an influential leader in the modern House/Organic/Simple Church movement, and as such, has written a number of books encouraging readers to reexamine what it means to be the church. Viola's latest book, Reimagining Church, may be his best yet. The book is written for the nonprofessional; for people who are leaving or are considering leaving more traditional forms of church. This is a strength, in my judgment, and will insure a wide readership. Viola's insights are accessible to everyone, unlike much missional church literature today, which is often written for seminary-trained church leaders. This is good because Viola has much to say. Viola has spent some twenty years in simple or organic churches, and has some incredibly keen insights into how these churches can and should function. Issues of leadership, relationships, sacraments, church unity, decision-making and more are addressed frankly and thoughtfully. There is real wisdom in this book -- wisdom born of experience. In my judgment, this book represents the best-articulated case for simple or organic churches I've read.
One of the best books on church that I've ever read. This is truly a fresh vision. I loved how it ties the nature of God into how the church is to be expressed. The part about leadership and covering was brilliant. Great book!