During the past ten years,my focus for reading Christian books has been on studying authors who wrote from 50-300 years ago. It seems that turth was not "what was relevant" back then, but for men who were the true spiritual leaders of the day, it was their life source, and came out their intimate passion for Jesus and love for His saints. The most important thing was true salvation, not building big churches, and sanctification, not self-actualization. In this freat masterpiece, Editor John Armstrong has brought home a hard hitting message to the "Laodician Church" of 2001. We are being greatly deceived, by our World around us, and consequently the Church is conforming to the world instead of to the standards of Jesus Christ and our early forefathers. Dr. Armstrong has assembled leading theologins in critcal areas of Christian wisdom, and compiled a book that should be a warning and a lighthouse for the Body of Christ in the years to come. Sadly, outstanding works like this do not achieve their highest cudos until long after their relevance is most needed. Thank you Dr.Amstrong and team for a truely distrubing( in a good way) book.
The evangelical church in America is dying from the same thing that kills its members: obesity, sloth, overindulgence, and ignorance. Church members are fat-headed, too lazy to read and study for themselves, quick to gorge themselves on pop theology, and don't want to hear the truth. Thus, any book that attempts to point out these failings is often read only by those who are already aware of the problem; the messenger isn't killed for bringing bad news, because no one who would find it offensive is listening. Nonetheless, I hope that "The Compromised Church" gets a wide hearing; its message is vital for today. The book is a compilation volume with contributions by some of the brightest evangelical pastors and scholars around: Al Mohler, David Wells, Sinclair Ferguson, Ed Clowney, etc. The topics covered are at the heart of the current crisis in evangelicalism. Just to whet your appetite, I will list a few: the authority of Scripture, the doctrine of the Trinity, "church-o-rama or corporate worship," baptism, church discipline, and preaching. Each subject is given careful, biblical and sociological treatment. A quote from the chapter by Monte Wilson ("Church-O-Rama or Corporate Worship") should give you the overall flavor of the book:
"Evangelical worship is becoming an oxymoron. Our songs are either belted out in the same mindless intensity with which we ............."
Strong stuff. This book addresses the problems of the church in a compassionate but firm manner, and offers viable solutions, but not a quick fix. If you find yourself appalled at the sorry state of American evangelicalism, take heart: there are influential and intelligent pastors and teachers who share your disgust. They have taken the time to analyze the problems, and they have solid, Bible-based answers to help you address them. Read this book. Share it with your pastor, your Sunday school teacher, your Bible study group. Prayer for revival should always be accompanied by careful thought and analysis of the world around us. "The Compromised Church" will promote just that.