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The Church: The Gospel Made Visible

The Church: The Gospel Made Visible
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Dever, Mark

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T4G 2010 — Session 1 — Mark Dever from Together for the Gospel (T4G)

Publisher's Description

Christians face lots of practical questions when it comes to life in the local church: How is the gospel displayed in our lives together? What are we supposed to do and believe? Different followers answer differently—even as they preach the same gospel! What should we think about such differences?

A church's life, doctrine, worship, and even polity are important issues. Yet they are so rarely addressed. The Church is Mark Dever's primer on the doctrine of the church for all who see Scripture alone as a sufficient authority for the doctrine and life of the local church. He explains to the reader what the Bible says about the nature and purpose of the church—what it is, what it's for, and what it does.Indeed, Scripture teaches us about all of life and doctrine, including how we should assemble for corporate worship and how we're to organize our corporate life together. God has revealed himself by his Word. He is speaking to us, preparing us to represent him today, and to see him tomorrow! A congregation of regenerate members, fulfilling the responsibilities given to us by Christ himself in his Word, regularly meeting together, led by a body of godly elders, is the picture God has given us in his Word of his church.

About the Author

Mark Dever is senior pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC and president of 9Marks Ministries. He holds degrees from Duke University (BA), Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (MDiv), The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (MTheol), and Cambridge University (DPhil).

Book Details

208 Pages
Publisher: Broadman and Holman Publishers
Publication Date: April 2012
ISBN 10: 1433677768
ISBN 13: 9781433677762

"I’m not sure that I know anyone who has read more on ecclesiology, from the whole breadth of Christian tradition, than Mark Dever. So, his exegesis is not done in isolation but in conversation with twenty centuries of Christian thinking. As a Presbyterian, I would encourage non-Baptists and non-Congregationalists to read and engage with Mark's work, not only because it is so well done, biblical, and helpful, but also because of a huge evangelical blind spot the book addresses. Ecclesiology is indisputably one of evangelicalism’s great weaknesses, in part because of subjectivism, individualism, and pragmatism. Mark offers a robust corrective to this, and even where you may disagree you will find yourself edified and instructed. Mark approaches this subject not simply as a skilled historical theologian and systematician, but also as a local church pastor who has fostered a vital and healthy embrace of biblical polity in his own congregation, with happy results. He is no ‘dry-land sailor’ or impractical theoretician but a faithful shepherd. The growth and life and fruitfulness of his flock testify to this."
- Ligon Duncan, Senior minister, First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, Mississippi

"Trust me, if you talk with my friend Mark Dever for more than five minutes, the local church will come up in the conversation—not only because it is the focus of his impressive academic work, but because the church is to him as it was to Charles Spurgeon, ‘the dearest place on earth.’ Over many discussions Mark has taught me much about the church, and even in areas where we disagree, I’ve been affected by his passion for the church. This book allows you to have a similar conversation with Mark, and I have no doubt that your heart will be stirred with love for the church universal and for your local church in particular."
- C. J. Mahaney, President, Sovereign Grace Ministries

"For far too long, the church has suffered for its lack of attention to ecclesiology. Thankfully, that neglect has given way to a new age of rediscovery, and Mark Dever has been a key catalyst for the recovery of biblical ecclesiology. In this book, you will find a faithful, truthful, thrilling understanding of the church. But be warned: Once you read this book, you will never be satisfied until you are a part of a church that is growing into this kind of faithfulness and life."
- R. Albert Mohler, President, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

"The church today desperately needs to think more deeply about the church. That’s why I’m incredibly thankful for Mark Dever. No one writes as passionately, as winsomely, as biblically, or as practically about the church. This book is a wonderful example of all those traits. Even though my theology is different on a few important points like baptism and congregationalism, I always learn from Mark when he talks ecclesiology. If you love the church, you’ll love this book. And if the doctrine of the church sounds terribly unimportant, then you need to read this book even more."
- Kevin DeYoung, Senior pastor, University Reformed Church, East Lansing, Michigan

"Mark Dever has taught me more about the church than any other living human being. He’s a keen observer and insightful practitioner. In The Church: The Gospel Made Visible, Dever helps us to see how the good news goes cinematic in the nitty-gritty lives of local congregations. What joy comes from recognizing the embodiment of the gospel in our very ordinary congregations!"
- Thabiti Anyabwile, Senior pastor, First Baptist Church, Grand Cayman Islands

"Mark Dever has rendered an invaluable service to the Body of Christ in this book. Its biblical grounding is sure, and its theological insights are spot on! Few address the issues of ecclesiology better than this pastor/theologian. This work will help us better understand what the church is and what the church does when it is faithful to Scripture"
- Daniel L. Akin, President, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary