Zachary's Reviews > The Emerging Church: Vintage Christianity for New Generations

The Emerging Church by Dan Kimball
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's review
Jan 12, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction
Recommended to Zachary by: Bill Brown (Seminary Professor)
Recommended for: pastors, church leaders

This is quite a challenging book for any traditional pastor. In fact, I think the material presented within would be quite challenging even for pastors of more modern churches. But challenging in a good way. I would encourage every pastor to read this and work through the material within, but maybe read a book like Stott's Cross of Christ or Noel Due's Created for Worship first to get your priorities straight.

The need for having a firm Biblical foundation before reading this book is great because though the ideas and concepts are quite engaging and exciting, some of them can be easily carried out in excess and without the proper motivation, setting, and emphasis.

Kimball also has a habit of generalizing and stereotyping which sound convincing but aren't necessarily true. In addition to that, his criticism of the Seeker movement is rather passionate, but in the end his model is very similar, for it is also focused (on one level) at attracting people to church, though since this attraction is played out in a postmodern setting it looks, feels and behaves quite differently than the modern Seeker movement.

What I think is good about this book (as I thought the same about his corresponding Emerging Worship) is that Kimball raises issues and difficulties facing the church at present. These issues must be dealt with, but not necessarily the way Kimball demands they be. The primary problem with his solutions is that not every church is in California, and nor are all the high school and college age church members completely up to their heads in postmodern thought. Pastors and ministry leaders should read this book not because it has all the answers, but they need to see if the issues are relevant to their body of believers as well as if any of the solutions proffered by Kimbal might be able to minister to their people in their respective settings.

It's a great book, but not to be read lightly or overly passionately. It must be taken with a grain of salt - but it can be great for every pastor to tackle these issues.

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