"No evangelical writer makes a more scrupulous attempt at clarity and fairness than John Stott. Notably fresh and illuminating." -- World Vision
In recent years, the mission of the church has been defined in two almost exclusive ways. On the one hand are those who say the church must focus on evangelism and discipleship alone. On the other hand are those who advocate concentrating almost solely on societal reform.
In this classic book, John Stott shows that Christian mission must encompass both evangelism and social action. He begins with careful definitions of five key terms--mission, evangelism, dialogue, salvation and conversion. Then, through a thorough biblical exploration of these concepts, Stott provides a model for ministry to people's spiritual and physical needs alike.
Ultimately, Stott points to the example of Jesus, who modeled both the Great Commission of proclamation and the Great Commandment of love and service. This balanced, holistic approach to mission points the way forward for the work of the church in the world.
- In Christian mission in the modern...
In Christian mission in the modern world, John Stott seeks to communicate the biblical meaning and importance of mission, evangelism, dialogue, salvation and conversion.
In one way this is a book for the specific time in the church’s history a few decades ago when it was originally written. Stott quotes and analyses heavily the books, conferences talks and academic papers that were having a significant impact on discussions of mission and evangelism. Most of these would be unfamiliar to most reading the book now which can make a few spots a little hard to get through.
While the voices have changed the arguments tend to stay the same. Even with the shift from modernism to postmodernism to wherever we are going next, questions like what it means to evangelize, how to understand the Christian responsibility for social justice and how Christians should approach dialogue remain important. Stott provides a solid, balanced biblical analysis of these issues. It is particularly helpful in dealing with the currently fashionable idea that just doing good is an acceptable substitute for actually telling people about the gospel. On the flipside, it also rebuts those who would preach but not help with peoples practical needs.
Despite the dated content, I very much recommend it for an evenhanded look at issues of evangelism and mission that remain contentious but important today.
- Though Stott's reflection on Christianity in...
Though Stott's reflection on Christianity in the modern world was published 30 years ago, his points are as focused and useful today as ever. The work is scrupulous, methodical, and extremely fair, and Simon Vance's delivery matches Stott's prose style wonderfully. Vance's voice is always coolly rational. Stott takes care to distinguish between a range of theological or textual points, and each time Vance aids the listener through shifting cadence and emphasis to accent such distinctions. The only weakness--and this is minor--is that Vance doesn't seem fully at ease with the terms from biblical languages. G.T.B. © AudioFile 2005, Portland, Maine [Published: OCT/NOV 05]