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Dynamics of Spiritual Life

4.36  ·  Rating Details  ·  105 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
Richard Lovelace gives a history of spiritual renewals in light of biblical models. Isolating the elements of live orthodoxy, he proposes a comprehensive approach to renewal. Lovelace looks at such practical issues as renewal of the local congregation, the ways revivals go wrong, the evangelical thrust toward church unity, and Christian approaches to the arts and to social ...more
Paperback, 455 pages
Published August 13th 1979 by IVP Academic (first published July 13th 1979)
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William Randolph
Dec 29, 2007 William Randolph rated it it was amazing
This book is what brought me back to the content of my Reformed heritage, and stopped my movement towards Catholicism. It might not be the most spectacular book out there, but Lovelace's generosity of spirit is there on every single page.

On the other hand, he wrote in the seventies; sadly, his high hopes for the nascent Christian music industry would prove to be unfounded.
Jason Poling
Jan 10, 2015 Jason Poling rated it it was amazing
There is the American way to eat a meal and the French way. The difference can be measured in time: one takes four times as long as the other. I ate this book the French way. Yeah, I probably chewed too slowly and some of the ideas grew cold, but stopping to savor every thought of Lovelace was worth it. This book has given me a renewed hope in the future missional effectiveness of the Church. It also proved my long-held contention that a good grasp of church history is more essential to formulat ...more
Mar 21, 2014 Jkanz rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
I saw Dynamics of Spiritual Life: An Evangelical Theology of Renewal (1979) on a few different reading lists of people I trust. This large book written by a church history professor is wide ranging in scope, but highly readable. Essentially, the author explores the history of revivals and spiritual renewal in the church and especially the "evangelical" church, such as the first and second great awakenings. He spent quite a bit of time discussing Jonathan Edwards, who was a catalyst in the first ...more
Jul 24, 2013 Tim rated it it was amazing
I finished rereading Lovelace's large book for the first time in many years and I remember now the dual influence of his exercise in spiritual theology upon me. The first influence was in creating a sense of the place and the operation of renewal in the church argued from a firm basis in Scripture and in Lovelace's analysis of history. He sees renewal coming when the church realizes God's holiness and the depth of sin. Its primary elements are a connection of justification and sanctification an ...more
Apr 01, 2013 Matt rated it it was amazing
Shelves: church-history
A phenomenal record of Evangelicalism - along with its ancestors and offspring! As Lovelace traces this sub-culture's presence throughout history since the Reformation, he helps the reader mine valuable lessons about the purpose, mission, and functioning of the Church. He hits hard at the weaknesses and failings, and weaves history and Scripture together masterfully. This book may be from the 1970s, but its lessons and implications are needed if the church is to see restoration and revival again ...more
Mar 23, 2013 Rod rated it it was amazing
If you are looking for something that chronicles a historical perspective of the development of Christian and Biblical spiritual development from a scholarly (but not super heavy) standpoint, Lovelace provides it in this book. He leaves no evangelical tradition's stone unturned and causes the reader to ask questions about his/her own evangelical tradition's heritage and convictions. An excellent objective (as much as possible - the author is Reformed in perspective) treatment of the subject. I w ...more
Mar 24, 2014 BJ rated it it was amazing
Fantastic book that should be more widely read among Christians for its gospel-centered study, reaching across many traditions, on revival and spirituality in evangelicalism. Like any book, one will not agree with all of Lovelace's opinions, but I'm convinced you will leave it challenged and helped. I will be revisiting it often. I found the first-half superb, and while its a touch slower on the back-end of its 435 pages, it's still darn good.
Jul 12, 2007 Ben rated it really liked it
Lovelace, a church historian, traces the history of personal and corporate renewal. He establishes the primary and secondary elements of renewal through the church's history. This is a good read for examining why some ministries take off while others wallow in mediocrity. It gives a reader the opportunity to reflect on God's design for using His people and for those people to get in line with His purposes through their lives.
Sep 08, 2008 Amy marked it as to-read
have heard nothing but good stuff about this book. probably be a slow read.
Nathan Carter
Aug 17, 2012 Nathan Carter rated it really liked it
A little bit disorganized, but some amazing gospel nuggets in here!!!!! Reading this helps you better understand Tim Keller (Lovelace was his professor at Gordon-Conwell).
Aug 12, 2010 Charity rated it really liked it
Great book. Theology. Slightly dated, but has transferable and big thoughts. Used to be seminary reading.
Chris Dang
Feb 15, 2011 Chris Dang rated it liked it
Really long sentences.
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Not to be confused with Richard Lovelace, the English seventeenth century poet.
More about Richard F. Lovelace...

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