The authors outline a theology of Black church worship, Black preaching, and Black Christian experience that can grow out of the Reformed tradition. In doing so, they take the Black Church back to some of its earliest American roots see "Beyond the Suffering" for portraits of heroes of Black Church history. As the authors argue, this book is not only for the Black Church. It is for any Christian concerned with a Christian church experience that combines truth and love. I've bought more copies to give as gifts. One person found this helpful.
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This author's answer to the problems facing the African-American church is to systematically reintroduce classic Calvinism as a dominant teaching. This small volume will be helpful to readers to understand the challenges the church currently faces in this atomized and aimless North American society. Carter and the two other authors who each have written one chapter lays out very well some of the social and family dynamics that he feels need Gospel attention.
This is well written and readable. Carter and Associates focus on the core doctrine and dynamic of God's Grace. He calls American Christians and the African-American church in particular to renew and reclaim a focus on the sovereign Grace of God and build on that. The upshot of this in my view, however, is that more information will fix the problem, as though this is a conceptual problem. He is more on track in the opening chapter, where he states the foundation needs to be the Scriptures. Chapter 4 on Christian Worship is excellent. The closing chapter is a paeon to Grace and so a good positive note to end on.
Carter would refocus the church on study of what the scriptures really say in their own context.
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But as he develops his ideas in the second chapter, what he actually emphasizes is the historical Creeds and Confessions, and spends most of his energy on those. But Leach who wrote Chapter 2 on the Creeds and Carter seem unaware that the early Creeds and the Reformation Confessions were also culture-bound, arising at a particular time in response to particular questions or problems that arose out the worldview of that particular period and society. And he focuses specifically on the Reformed, or Calvinist, tradition, which developed in the years or so after the Protestant Reformation, so in the Early Modern period, only in the Latin West.
The universal applicability of this late Western tradition arising out of western cultural thought is highly questionable. One person found this helpful 2 people found this helpful. I wanted to give the book 3. The purpose of this book as defined by the authors is the bring reformation to the black church. This I agree with. The black church for too long has continued to be high on experience and low on theology and doctrine. Both are important but if your theology is wrong your worship is wrong. Jesus is clear on this with the woman by the well in John 3. Her theology and doctrine was wrong thus Jesus corrects her about true worship.
All 3 of the books authors are Reformed Shepherds so I expected some reformed leanings. I got a little more than I bargained for thus the book loses one star for me. The opening section by Michael Leach seemed to be heavy in Reformed Tradition and Ecclisology and very little on practical Reformed Theology. I am not of the Reformed persuasion as it relates to this so this could be a matter for me and not all readers.
The book also lost a star due to the terminology in the first chapter. I felt like I was reading a seminal book and if I were to hand it off I don't think it will be well recieved. It seemed the book was trying to prove something in the first chapter and because of that I fell that it would alienate the very audience it was attempting to reform. We must be careful with that if we are going to come to the table and have any meaningful dialogue. So my problem with the books would be some of the word choice, the heavy emphasis on reformed ecclisiology, and maybe a tone of arrogance.
But that leads to what I enjoy. The book focuses on a high view of worship, the Bible, and even practical holiness Jones Chapter. Carter's two chapters on preaching though I don't agree with all he says and worship likewise are worth the book alone. Jones' chapter which is packed with the history of the black church in very practial terminology and the book is not only worth reading I would recommend that you pass it out to a black or white pastor who you may have an ear with. So overall I enjoyed the book, but if we are to come to the table we must come with great humility and communicate on the terms of the invited guest.
If not the books we of the Black and Reformed persuasion will write will only stay in the circles of those we agree with. See all 5 reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. Bringing the Reformation to the African-American Church.
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Experiencing the Truth communicates the need of a vibrant, experiential, Reformed Christianity among African-Americans and all believers. How does a believer choose a church to attend? Sadly too many Christians search for churches that serve them and meet their perceived needs.
Instead they should prefer places where God is exalted and biblical truth and Christian doctrine are proclaimed. Such churches are essential if Christians are to understand what God is doing and what he calls His people to be.
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Experiencing the Truth presents these truths not simply to African-American churches, but also to the whole church today. These authors lay out the biblical basis for choosing and attending a church, and they demonstrate how the historic Reformed expression has been the most biblically accurate and experientially consistent expression of Christianity.
He is the author of two books and numerous magazine and journal articles, and blogs at Non Nobis Domine. Carter travels frequently as a conference speaker and guest lecturer. He is also an organizing member of the Council of Reforming Churches. What would you like to know about this product?
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