A thought–provoking introduction to the importance of the local church
It seems that increasing numbers of professing Christians in the West do not attend church. Church, to many, has become a place to go when it is convenient, to have one’s needs met. Terry L. Johnson asks whether our individualistic, dismissive attitude to the gathering of the local church can be squared with that of the New Testament.
Examining what the Bible has to say about the church, Johnson shows why the local body of believers is an essential part of the life of every believer – and the role that each individual believer plays in the life of the church. This thought–provoking, challenging book will benefit every believer.
1. Our Collapsing Ecclesiology
II. What Scripture teaches
2. Jesus and the Church
3. Keys of the Kingdom
4. Where Jesus is
5. The Good Shepherd and the Sheep
6. The Apostles and the Church
7. One Anothers and Community
8. Life Together
9. Covenantal Priority
III. Clarifying Perspectives
10. Definitional Confusion
11. Visible or Invisible?
12. Hypocrites at Church
14. Parachurch or Quasi–church?
IV. Historic Perspectives
15. Mother Church
16. Body and Bride
17. Slighting the Church
18. Sola Ecclesia:A Sixth Sola?
Terry Johnson is the senior minister of the Independent Presbyterian Church in Savannah, Georgia, which he has served since 1987.
"Written with provocative apologetic flair, Pastor Terry Johnson informs his readers that the church is not a voluntary institution, but a living organism to which we must belong. You will walk away from this resource not only better informed biblically, but encouraged and motivated to invest deeply in the bride of Christ, the church of God."
Erin Wheeler, Author of ‘The Good Portion – The Church: Delighting in the Doctrine of the Church’
"This book will not only enhance your growth in grace but will become an instrument as you disciple others in Christ’s Church."
Harry L. Reeder III, Senior Pastor, Briarwood Presbyterian Church, Birmingham, Alabama
"… a compelling and exciting vision for the local church, for your local congregation. If you’re feeling sceptical and jaded about the church then this book will renew your enthusiasm. It will help you to see afresh that the ‘ordinary’ life of an ‘ordinary’ church is actual something extraordinary, filled with Christ’s supernatural presence and power."
Tim Chester, Author and senior faculty member, Crosslands Training
"In this short, thoroughly biblical and practical work, Dr. Johnson sets for the case in a manner that is convincing and convicting (in the best sense). His suggestion of the norm of local church membership as Sixth Sola is hard to refute, after reading this work—unless one elevates individualism over discipleship."
David W. Hall, Senior Minister, Midway Presbyterian Church, Powder Springs, Georgia
"This book is a timely call to a Biblical understanding of what it means to belong to the body and bride of Christ, and the blessings that come from gathering physically as God’s people."
Robin Weekes, Minister, Emmanuel Church, Wimbledon, London
"In short, accessible chapters, Johnson carefully restores church to its rightful and central place."
Iver Martin, Principal, Edinburgh Theological Seminary, Edinburgh, Scotland