Planting Growing Churches for the 21st Century – Book Review

He divides his book in three essential parts. The first part concerns the preparation for church planting and everything that encompasses. In the first chapter, the author defined the definition of church planting “as an exhausting but exiting venture of faith that involves the planned process of beginning and growing new local living church ministries youtube, based on Jesus’ promise and in obedience to his Great Commission” (p. 19). Dr. Malphurs believes church planters are makers not maintainers of the common status quo. He believes the day of maintenance ministry has already passed. The job of the church planter is not an easy work; it demands more mental, emotional, and physical effort than maintaining a church ministry. The process of church planting requires a lot of faith in God. It involves a process like that of giving birth to a new child. It requires a careful plan. It involves both beginning and growing churches. It is a call in a response to the Great Commission.

There is need for church planting, for studies show that many of the churches in North American are either plateau or declining. There are a number of increased cults and non-Christian faiths all across North America. The church cannot keep up with the increase of these cults and the great decline and plateau churches unless it gets involves in church planting.

The author also provides financial information on how to raise funds to plant a church. He divides them in four facts; it begins with trust in God as provider. He also identified three ways on which a local congregation can grow. The first one, he identified as biological growth, which is the kind that take places when couples in the church have children, who then becomes members of the parents’ church. The second kind of growth is transfer growth, which is the result of church members moving from one church to another. The third kind of growth is numerically which is through conversion of lost people. It is estimated that a conversion rate of twenty 25% is necessary in order to make in impact in the world.

The second part concerns the personnel involve in church planting. It helps make a wise assessment to determine who can be a church planter and how effective those in the core group need to be for the work. He introduces the values of assessment, which involves knowing, liking, and being the person God designed to be. Everyone has a divine given design which was given to him/her at their birth and which characteristics have been modified in positive and negative way throughout the span of a lifetime. These assessments help in discovering the weakness, strengths, and limitations of the person being appraise. He also helps determines if the person involved in church planting is the kind of leader required to be a leading church planting. Church planters are to be strong leaders, as well as strong servant-leaders.

The third part examines the actual process involved in church plant. It contains essential chapters that are designed to help church planters understand the six stages that a new church go through and what essentially takes place in each of them. The stages are the conception, development (prenatal stage), birth, growth, maturity, and reproduction stage. The conception stage starts with the nucleus of the ideal of birthing a church. The way a baby is conceived in its mother’s womb, so the idea of starting a new church is conceived in the person’s mind. “Every church has its own DNA (its values, mission, vision, strategy, and so on) that guides its life and growth” (p. 118). The first step to consider is prayer, before any attempt is given to planting a church; it is recommended to put together an intercessory team throughout the process.

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