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Comment: This book is signed by the author! VG - This Paper Back book is in very good overall condition. Dust jacket, if applicable, is intact, with no nicks or tears. Spine has no signs of creasing. Pages are clean and not marred by notes or folds. Thanks for supporting our Mission at Goodwill
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The Ten Most Influential Churches of the Past Century: And How They Impact You Today Paperback – January 20, 2015

4.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Elmer L. Towns is Dean Emeritus of the School of Religion and Theological Seminary at Liberty University, which he cofounded in 1971 with Jerry Falwell. He continues to teach the Pastor’s Bible Class at Thomas Road Baptist Church each Sunday, which is televised on a local network and Angel One.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Destiny Image (January 20, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0768405416
  • ISBN-13: 978-0768405415
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,096,892 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am so impressed with the content and proposals of this book that I have just assigned it as a text. The book is an easy and enjoyable read salted with personal interviews between the author and his subjects over the past forty years. You may not agree with all of his choices, I didn't, but he makes a compelling case for his choices. Ed Stetzer no doubt supplied his mentor with SBC data as needed in several of the chapters. Towns includes insider knowledge related to the Azuza Street events giving rise to diverse Pentecostal movements, to understanding the development of the Yoido Island Church in South Korea, and to the growth and development of Jerry Falwell's church and university in Lynchburg, VA.. Applications abound, so you will have to choose carefully and prioritize. Reading this book will make you the most interesting person in the room at your next church council or home fellowship meeting!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Leaders who have lofty dreams that influence the world also have feet of clay. That is one of the interesting conclusions drawn by Elmer Towns in this book. The book looks at 10 of the most significant trends in Protestant Christianity in the past 100 years and examines 10 churches which have been at the forefront of those trends. Just like the leaders of those churches, each of the trends seems to have its strengths and its flaws.

The book starts with the Azusa Street Revival and the spread of Pentecostalism, then moves on to discuss the Chinese house church movement, the Civil Rights movement, the Yoido Full Gospel Church, the Sunday School movement, the Bible-expositional preaching movement, seeker-model churches, Baby Boomer churches, Praise-Worship churches, and media-and-marketing outreach churches.

Lessons about the church which the author draws from his study of these influential churches include:

• God is not impressed with denominational labels or systems of theology
• God understands culture and expects us to live our faith in the culture in which we find ourselves
• Churches have life cycles like all other living, organic things

It is easy for a church leader to develop firm convictions about the one correct way to run a church. This book helps to challenge such convictions by showing many different ways in which churches have been “successful”, but also by shining a light on the flaws in those churches and in the characters of their leaders.
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A balanced perspective and research of God's work the last 100 years. Too bad it has an American perspective! It's ok!
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Format: Paperback
I found this 225 page book to be filled with surprising detail and history. Each of the 10 sections ends with what the author opines as 'strengths' and 'weaknesses' of the movement. I have personally been active in one of these movements for the past 20 years and found his treatment to be fair and accurate. I can assume the same of the other 9. Again, a good, interesting, easy read. The historical facts might be basic for a typical seminary student, I don't know, but perhaps it would be beneficial in filling in gaps of knowledge.

The author basically summarizes what he considers to be the top 10 20th century movements vis-a-vis "historic Protestant traditions". He does not cover Catholicism, Mormonism, Jehovah Witnesses, Scientology, et al, although acknowledging their impact as well.
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