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On Church Leadership

On Church Leadership

by Mark Driscoll
Publisher: Crossway Books
1st Edition, ©2008, ISBN: 9781433501371
Trade Paperback, 96 pages
Current Retail Price: $9.99

PLEASE NOTE: this is your last chance to buy this item. We will NOT be buying it again. Also, this product is NOT RETURNABLE, and SOLD AS-IS. If it is used, it may have defects, such as highlighting, torn pages or loose cover.

The A Book You'll Actually Read series is intended to offer brief introductions to essential issues of doctrine and practice within the Church for laypeople, in a length and format they can get through in about an hour. A Book You'll Actually Read On Church Leadership tackles the often difficult topics of church membership, elders and pastors, deacons, and women in the ministry.

Author Mark Driscoll, pastor of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, Washington since 1996, brings the Bible to bear on every topic he addresses in this book. By far the longest chapter (the whole book is less than 100 pages) is the one on women in ministry, in which Driscoll holds to the traditional complementarian view, and in which he will no doubt make some enemies.

Overall, Driscoll is biblical and thorough, at least as thorough as he can be in such a short book. At one point he says an elder should be a "dudely dude," which seems a bit like missing the point of Paul's lists of requirements, but he doesn't dwell on this description and his 17 marks of a qualified elder are right on.

The most obvious lack in On Church Leadership is the presence of any denominational context. Driscoll's church isn't part of a denomination, and he doesn't bring that into the discussion, which seems odd given his emphasis on the need for elder and pastor accountability. How can accountability be achieved outside a denominational structure?

Appendixes at the end of the book offer answers to common questions, a further reading list, and a sample church membership covenant like that one used at Mars Hill. The chapters on elders, deacons, and women in the ministry are good introductions, but overall there's a bit too much attention paid to the Mars Hill model to make it entirely evenhanded. For a more balanced but still accessible introduction that covers most of these issues, we'd suggest Mark Dever's book Nine Marks of a Healthy Church.

Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.

Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he's a husband and father who loves church, good food, and weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.
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Exodus Rating
FLAWS: No denominational context, no discussion of accountability
Summary: Decent introduction to the concept of eldership and church government but with a very narrow focus.

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