The church is on the verge of massive, category shifting, change. Contemporary church growth, despite its many blessings, has failed to stem the decline of Christianity in the West. We are now facing the fact that more of the same will not produce different results. Our times require a different kind of church--an apostolic, reproducing, movement where every person is living a mission-sent life.
Many of the best and brightest leaders in the contemporary church are now making the shift in the way they think, lead, and organize. Motivated partly by a vision of the church as ancient as it is new, and with a driving desire to see Biblical Christianity establish itself in Western cultural contexts, we are indeed seeing a new form of the church emerge in our day. Hirsch and Ferguson call this "apostolic movement" because it is more resonant with the form of church that we witness in the pages of the New Testament and in the great missional movements of history.
In this book, Hirsch and Ferguson share a rich array of theology, theory, and best practices, along with inspiring stories about leaders who have rightly diagnosed their churches' failure to embrace a biblical model of mission and have moved toward a fuller expression of the gospel. On the Verge will help church leaders discover how these forerunners and their insights are launching a new apostolic movement--and how any church can get involved.
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Customer Reviews for On the Verge: A Journey Into the Apostolic Future of the Church
Review 1 for On the Verge: A Journey Into the Apostolic Future of the Church
On the Verge Book Review
Date:July 29, 2011
Ministry Design Coach
Book Review: On the Verge: A Journey into the Apostolic Future of the Church The authors, Alan Hirsch and Dave Ferguson, point out the need for doing and being church in a new way and they provide a pathway for those wishing to discover and develop that new way. They state that the task of their book “is nothing less than to call the church to recover her most ancient, her most potent, and also her most beautiful form”. They write “to help birth the paradigm shift, to compellingly describe it, and then to help churches practically implement it”. Alan and Dave understand the data collected over the last decade clearly shows the serious decline of the North American church and they believe they have a solution to reverse that decline so that Christ is honored and people are brought to Him. Whether you agree with their conclusions or not I would urge you to take this journey with them through reading the book to help you discern what you should do and be in order to address this decline. How will you personally honor Christ and lead others to Him? Alan states “On the Verge is really a serious attempt to process and apply the Apostolic Genius paradigm developed in The Forgotten Ways, to existing (largely evangelical and evangelistic) churches, as well as to other existing church systems.” Dave states “I’m trading my life to catalyze a movement of reproducing churches”. Alan is a strategist and theologian and he brings “systemic and architectural perspectives” to the process. Dave is a “practitioner” and he addresses how a church can really implement the process they lay out in the book. The book is written by both men as a dialogue. In each chapter one man gives a proposal and the other provides a response. The pathway or map in the book is divided into four parts: Imagine, Shift, Innovate and Move with the purpose in mind to move the reader along the journey to discovering a new way of thinking about church. They seek to give God His rightful place in the process by urging the reader to turn to God for the conclusions and solutions to be drawn while on this journey.