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Unbinding the Gospel: Real Life Evangelism

3.90  ·  Rating details ·  199 ratings  ·  34 reviews
Unbinding the Gospel: Real Life Evangelism is a book for church groups to study. It's a book for pastors who want the truth about the state of our churches. It presents a clear-spoken, hopeful vision for a future of sharing our faith in Christ. It gives us a way to get there?without formulas, but hand-in-hand with God! Easy to read, witty, thoughtful and genuinely ...more
Paperback, 150 pages
Published January 1st 2007 by Chalice Press
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Average rating 3.90  · 
Rating details
 ·  199 ratings  ·  34 reviews


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Aaron
Apr 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: church-life
Book summary: It's all about prayer.
Chuck Denison
May 16, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Church Leaders
Unbinding the Gospel is a very useful book in a field overfull with relatively theoretical books. It is fact filled, starting with a base in a solid survey of growing churches. But it gets to real issues of parish ministry and outreach. The survey asked the right questions about how to engineer any kind of growth in a more main-line culture and theology, in which, specifically, it is NOT asumed that eternal damnation is at stake.

Ms. Reese and her associates designed a telling survey. They
...more
Bob Gross
Apr 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I found the focus on prayer as the foundation for evangelism to be essential. I not only read the book but also led a small group of church leaders through the book. They are now leading groups of others.
MaryEllin
Jun 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Ok, now I know why I should evangelize, and I even know how, but I’m still skittish about it. (Sorry, God.) Give it a shot, though; it might help you more than I did me.
Frank
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Based on a four-year study of hundreds of mainline Christian congregations, including 1,200 interviews with pastors, longtime members, and new Christians, Unbinding the Gospel reports they conclusively found “no rigid formula for success, no quick fix, no silver bullet.” Martha Grace Reese reports, “Our most important discovery is that a vivid relationship with God lies at the heart of real evangelism. People who share their faith love God and believe other people’s lives would be better if they ...more
Kent Kessler
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Would you want to pick up a book that someone has remarked about it like this, “Our church LOVES this book--we can do evangelism if this is what it is”? Reese wants you to learn about evangelism, aka. Faith Sharing. Part one teaches about why evangelize and how the Church is doing. Part two shows examples from churches successful in evangelism for you to analyze what can be possible for you. Part three helps you to move toward those possibilities and what God has in mind for you and your church. ...more
Lisa Phillips
I read this as part of a class at church. It was typical of church literature for mass consumption and not particularly interesting. The best part of the reading was the class discussion.
Jjaekley
Jul 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this book for a class in seminary. I agree with the positive ratings given by others. Reese's writing reflects scholarship, practice and an understanding of the Christian spiritual life and traditions. If you're looking for "10 steps to revitalize your church", or "how to win your town to Jesus in 30 days," this isn't your book. This book is aimed at transforming a congregation to understanding that evangelism is not one program among several. Instead Reese seeks to help the church ...more
Eric
Jun 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: church-projects
I read this book as part of an Evangelism initiative at my wife's church. Designed for group reading and discussion, I found it moderately challenging on its own, but fairly engaging when brought back to discuss with others.

There are some excellent points to be investigated, and the opportunity to hear others' opinions adds layers a simple read cannot. The authors bring forth examples which can be examined by most any denomination or biblical view. It has a distinct Christian perspective, but
...more
Weston
Jan 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First off, I am not a fan of the word "evangelism" because of all the negative connotations I have of it. However, this book, and discussions prompted in part by this book, taught me to embrace the word again and to consider that so much ministry of the church can be called "evangelism" that we've simply abused and misunderstood the word. This book is very accessible, but it seems well grounded theologically. It is the first book in a series, and I hope the rest are good. I found this book to be ...more
Alicia
Feb 27, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: spirituality
I thought this book was really interested and definitely worth reading. I seemed like the author has some different theological ideas from me, but her book was written more generally so that a variety of churches can use it. Reading made me feel good about the things I already do to share my faith with others, but it also made me see where I could do more. I really liked the questions that it asked, my favorite being "How has being Christian made a difference in my life?" I definitely am going ...more
Bill
Mar 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've just heard the rantings of a Christian celebrity church leader saying the Denver Broncos would be well served if Peyton Manning gets injured. Being associated with such nonsense is the stuff of the barriers facing anyone interested in legitimate sharing of Christian faith with integrity. Reese offers the tools and motivation to overcome the inertia which comes from such fear.If folks want "real" faith dealing with "real" life issues and "real" questions of growing, deepening and sharing the ...more
Rebecca
Jun 18, 2009 rated it liked it
The author explores evangelism from the lens of mainline protestant churches. For many readers who have not thought much about how churches attract new members, you will find it eye-opening. Strongly grounded in faith, prayer and scripture, this book offers something for most readers. You will find many treasures as well as things you disagree with. This book is structured as an eight-week study course for church leaders. Considering what the book attempts to do, I think it is the best ...more
Meredith
Thoroughly enjoyed the book. Clear and engaging language used to express the culmination of research and practice. (A classic Theory to Practice to Theory to Practice model.) Deeply grounded in the work of God in the world and the transformative power of prayer.

I would love to engage in the small group process and to see where all it might lead. However, given that we're in the middle of an Ending Well process that is producing amazing fruit, now is not the time.
Jenny
Dec 27, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ministry-shelf
Written in a down-to-earth tone, Martha Grace Reese emphasizes prayer as the main tool of evangelism and getting to know God, and making God known to others. I especially liked her insight on church dynamics, conflict and relationships within the life of a given congregation given in Section 3. Also, handy were specific uses of her book in group study. Looking forward to the 6 week prayer guide that comes at it's conclusion.
Nancy Graham
Mar 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
ASTOUNDINGLY helpful book -- examining the vital nature of talking about faith among thoughtful, intelligent persons and not leaving the acts of evangelism to high-profile "kooks." This book considers evangelism from a mainline perspective -- one which often remains silent in the realm of sharing life-giving conversation about God.
Dennis
Apr 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
A group of men in my church studied this book over the course of several Saturdays. While it may not have all the answers for every church in terms of developing an evangelism 'program' or direction, the thought-provoking ideas and examples are based on statistical study and have given us a starting point in our minds to create a fresh approach for our church to "go and make disciples."
Douglas
Jun 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
I've used this book with two different congregations now, and it is a superb resource to start the conversation, in a mainline church, about evangelism, and also feeds into church growth, discipleship, prayer, and a lot of other topics. It does all of this with accessible language, anecdotes, supporting research, and an eye toward being a practical resource rather than merely a theoretical one.
Robert D. Cornwall
Feb 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is an important book that calls on Mainline Protestants to recover or reclaim evangelism. We have avoided sharing our stories of faith in fear that it will offend. But this needn't be necessary. We needn't offend to tell our stories. Based on strong research, this is a book all Mainline churches need to explore.
Carol Wunderlich
very well-researched and thought out look at evangelism in modern mainline churches. Practical advice for moving forward for church leaders and congregations to re-engage in the church's primary mission to share the gospel and lead people into significant relationship with God.
Mike
Apr 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: christians
I attended a lecture she gave, and it seemed everyone there had read it and loved it. Personally she was a joy to be in the same room with. Then I attended a study course where we went through it a chapter a week. Really eye opening stuff.
Laura
Dec 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
We did this as part of an action team/ bible study at church. I found it had lots of great ideas, areas of introspection, ways the church can reach out, and what to expect from the efforts and results. This is a worthwhile study for anyone, any church, with a desire to share faith.
Sarah Mckenney
Jan 20, 2014 rated it liked it
Interesting read that helped me to look at evangelism in a totally different way. I have shared a lot of the things I read in this book with others and I encourage people to pick it up. An easy read that challenges us to think about how we share our faith with others.
Sarah
Nov 18, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: quit-reading
I've barely read into this book and already God is using it to change my perspective and open me up to new blessings!!!!!
Paul Rack
Feb 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Not much new here but she brings it all together. Important reminders about prayer.
David Gilmore
Dec 13, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good read; however, it is somewhat guilty of homogenizing the contextual applications of the "unbinding".
Jake
Sep 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: religious-books
My congregation's mission team went through this and enjoyed it. It's dated in many of its references but still good. Gave a whole new perspective on evangelism.
Nancy
Sep 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I found this book and the discussion group I attended inspiring, energizing and engaging. Hope it helps to infuse life into other churches.
Debby
Oct 23, 2013 rated it liked it
Read with a group as part of a bible study for our church. Good well written material.
Jeremy Pedersen
Nov 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very good pragmatic but theologically rich book on evangelism. As our ministerial is discussing this topic, I think I will share with them...
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