The Living Church (ebook)

The Living Church ebook

Convictions of a lifelong pastor

Discover the biblical characteristics which must be present for the authentic church to exist.

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What exactly is a living church?

Author John Stott explains, 'We need more radically conservative churches: "conservative" in the sense that they conserve what Scripture plainly requires, but radical in relation to that combination of tradition and convention that we call 'culture'. Scripture is unchangeable, but culture is not."

The Living Church brings together a number of characteristics of what the author calls 'authentic' or 'living' church. The marks, being clearly biblical, are timeless and need to be preserved.

We are encouraged to become learning churches, caring churches, worshipping churches and evangelising churches.

John Stott unpacks the Bible's wisdom rigorously with a teacher's skill and applies it faithfully with a pastor's heart. Becoming a living church is not an impossible goal.

Product details


  • Preface: ‘Emerging churches’
    The postmodern world

  • 1. Essentials: God’s vision for his church
    A learning church
    A caring church
    A worshipping church
    An evangelizing church

  • 2. Worship: Glorying in God’s holy name
    Biblical worship
    Congregational worship
    Spiritual worship
    Moral worship

  • 3. Evangelism: Mission through the local church
    Forms of evangelism
    The church must understand itself: its theology
    The church must organize itself: its structures
    The church must express itself: its message
    The church must be itself: its life

  • 4. Ministry: The Twelve and the Seven
    An every-member ministry
    The pastoral ministry
    The example of the apostle (the shepherd)
    The invasion of false teachers (the wolves)
    The value of the people (the sheep)

  • 5. Fellowship: The implications of koinonia
    Our common inheritance
    Our common service
    Our mutual responsibility
    Some practical illustrations

  • 6. Preaching: Five paradoxes
    Biblical and contemporary
    Authoritative and tentative
    Prophetic and pastoral
    Gifted and studied
    Thoughtful and passionate

  • 7. Giving: Ten principles
    Springing from the Trinity
    Creating equality according to our means
    Careful supervision and friendly rivalry
    A harvest with symbolic significance
    The result: thanksgiving to God

  • 8. Impact: Salt and light
    The truths of salt and light
    Weapons for social change
    Christian distinctives

  • Conclusion: Looking for Timothys in the twenty-first century
    A threefold appeal
    Where are the Timothys?

  • Three historical appendices
    An autobiographical sketch
    I. Why I am still a member of the Church of England
    II. I have a dream of a living church
    III. Reflections of an octogenarian


Contributors John Stott
ISBN 9781844747641
Format Digital (delivered electronically)
First published February 2014
Language English
Publisher IVP
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