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Disappearing Church will help you with pressing questions about the state of the Christian church, such as:
Mark Sayers reminds us that real growth happens when the church embraces its countercultural witness, not when it blends in.
Vendor: Moody Publishers
Publication Date: 2016
Facing Leviathan: Leadership, Influence, and Creating in a Cultural StormMark SayersMoody Publishers / 2014 / Trade Paperback$10.99 Retail:
$14.99Save 27% ($4.00)
An Unstoppable Force: Daring to Become the Church God Had in MindErwin McManusDavid C. Cook / 2013 / Trade Paperback$9.49 Retail:
$14.99Save 37% ($5.50)
Servolution: Starting a Church Revolution Through ServingDino RizzoZondervan / 2009 / Trade Paperback$12.99 Retail:5 Stars Out Of 5 2 Reviews
$18.99Save 32% ($6.00)
When church and culture look the same...
For the many Christians eager to prove we can be both holy and cool, cultural pressures are too much. We either compartmentalize our faith or drift from it altogetherinto a world thats so alluring.
Have you wondered lately:
- Why does the Western church look so much like the world?
- Why are so many of my friends leaving the faith?
- How can we get back to our roots?
Disappearing Church will help you sort through concerns like these, guiding you in a thoughtful, faithful, and hopeful response. Weaving together art, history, and theology, pastor and cultural observer Mark Sayers reminds us that real growth happens when the church embraces its countercultural witness, not when it blends in.
Its like Jesus said long ago, "If the salt loses its saltiness, it is no longer good for anything…"
HeidiMarie2 Stars Out Of 5Disappearing ChurchSeptember 13, 2016HeidiMarieQuality: 4Value: 3Meets Expectations: 2Disappearing Church by Mark Sayers delves into the issue of Christians leaving the church at a really fast rate. Sayers gives his thoughts on why that is. He says that people are leaving the church due to their concern for instant gratification and escaping the rules and confines of Christian life- the secularization of the west.
I really didn't like this book at all. It was super dry and hard to get through. There is no personal voice to the book at all, and it actually reads like a textbook, coming across as really grumpy, judge, and preachy. His thoughts seemed very outdated. I looked at the copyright date in the front and was shocked to see that it was published this year. Sayers was really vague, not really giving specific examples with little evidence to back up his claims. Honestly, he really just said the same thing over and over and over for 200 pages.
I also didn't agree with the majority of what Sayers said. While he went on and on about how the people who leave the church are the bad and sinful ones, he hardly even acknowledged that in the majority of cases, the problem is with the church itself and the leaders in the church. I'm pretty sure there was only one sentence on this in the whole book.
Though it is a short book, it took me longer than usual to get through it. Overall, I gave it 2/5 stars. It has some great reviews on Goodreads, but I don't really get it.
*I received a copy of this book from Moody Publishers in exchange for an honest review.
SnickerdoodleSarahGender: female4 Stars Out Of 5When the salt becomes unsalty....April 5, 2016SnickerdoodleSarahGender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Disappearing Church by Mark Sayers posits an interesting thought: We live in a culture riddled with "liberal Christian residue", our seemingly secular culture is basically Christian liberalism without the label of 'Christian' and without being considered 'religious' . By trying to be relevant by trying to appeal to the ever-changing culture around them liberal Christianity became so relevant that it's basic tenets became a part of the culture and thus the church 'institution' was irrelevant as the culture had already been won. Sayers illustrates it in this way, "" Like a team of suicide bombers who obliterate themselves yet irrevocably change the cultural atmosphere, liberal Christianity has essentially destroyed itself as an ecclesiological, institutional force, yet won the culture over to its vision of a Christianity reshaped for contemporary tastes."
The author explains that the modern 'church' has imbibed and taught a contemporary form of gnostisism (his chart comparing ancient and contemporary gnosticism to the Gospel is very interesting)"This new religion could be detected in an increasing obsession with the self, with personal development and the preference of spirituality over religion, and with therapy over communion with a transcendent God." The discovery of self is the religion of the day, even in many Christian churches the goal is self-satisfaction, self-fulfillment, self-discovery, a follow your heart mentalityetc. Sayers points out that it is no wonder people can leave church so easily without even finding another one as they can get the same teachings from the world. The book brings to light the idea of our day and age that personal spirituality is better and more holy than organized 'religion'.
Though I thought that Sayers insights into our modern culture were fascinating I do have some misgivings about the book. Sayers says some things that imply to me that he may consider Roman Catholicism a legitimate/biblical type of Christianity, and thus the people who hold those doctrines are Christians, that concerns me. He uses movie illustrations that I think were rather unnecessary and I didn't quite get what he meant by using the statement, "withdraw/return"it's probably just me.
Overall though it was rather interesting, though I think it could have been betterit just seemed as though there was something missing, though I'm not sure what at the moment. But again, it is a very interesting insight into the 'disappearing' institutional church of our day and is quite thought provoking. I'll end, as I usually do, with one of my favorite quotes from the book:
"As Rolheiser comments, 'Our age tends to divorce spirituality from ecclesiology. We want God, but we don't want church.' However, the great flaw of our search for spirituality and faith minus church is 'the unconfronted life. Without church, we have more private fantasy than real faith.Real conversion demands that eventually its recipient be involved in both the muck and the grace of actual church life.' More than ever we need the limitations and glorious messiness of churchThe mere fact that God chooses it, in the same way that He chooses us, humble vessels, is part of His grace that fools the wisdom of the world."
Many thanks to Moody Publishers for sending me a free review copy of this book (My review did not have to be favorable)