Many of you are aware of my recent series on the Hillsong church/enterprise and how their consumeristic gospel of self-esteem, success, and sensuality, is becoming an ever-increasing blight on the Australian landscape. It is both lamentable, and typical, that God honoring churches with Scripture honoring pastors are becoming down under dinaosaurs. With that in mind, it was to my immense delight that i discovered the recently published The Trellis And The Vine.
Those who know me know that I am a huge fan of Mark Dever's work "Nine marks Of A Healthy Church" and how it is a refreshingly biblical substitute for the plethora of "Purpose Driven" propoganda. I consider Dever's book to be the benchmark as a framework for biblical churches. So when Dever described "The Trellis And The Vine" as "the best book I've read on church ministry" and staff at "Grace Community Church" (where John Macarthur pastors) described it as a must read, I went down to their book shop and bought it straight off the shelf.
The "Trellis And The Vine" is authored by the Australian pair of Colin Marshall, and Tony Payne and is a wonderful biblical framework for churches to evaluate and ammend (perhaps I should say radically overhaul) the way they function and operate. I hope and pray that this book gains traction down under where there is desperate need for Gospel driven churches.
Here are some high profile endorsements:
What Col and Tony have described here is exactly what I've been trying to do in my own life and in our congregation for years. According to this book, Christians are to be disciple-making disciples and pastors are to be trainers. Superb! This book sets out a crucial shift that is needed in the mindset of many pastors. The authors have carefully listened to the Bible. And they've worked on this book. The result is a book that is well-written and well- illustrated, but even more, a book that is full of biblical wisdom and practical advice. This is the best book I've read on the nature of church ministry.
Mark Dever, Senior Pastor, Capitol Hill Baptist Church, Washington DC, USA
This is a simple, beautiful book that I plan to have every pastor and elder at The Village Church read. It quietly and calmly beckons us back to biblical, hands-on shepherding and is a book desperately needed among large churches in the West.
Matt Chandler, Lead Pastor, The Village Church, Dallas, Texas, USA
God makes ministers in the midst of his church. It is in the context of the faithful local church that ministers are best taught, shaped and equipped. The Trellis and the Vine is a superb guide to preparing pastors and ministers for Christ's church. It comes from a ministry so deeply committed to the recovery of biblical truth and the cause of the gospel. The wisdom in this little book is invaluable. My advice: Keep a good stack on hand at all times, and put this book to good use.
R. Albert Mohler, Jr., President, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Yes!! Something good can come out of Australia! Fair Dinkum.