A Chronicle of Renewal and Revival

The Body of Christ
Part 1: Body Ministry

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This book is also Part 1 of the book Body Ministry

 
The Body of Christ 2: Ministry Education

The Body of Christ – 2 books
Book 1 – Body Ministry
Book 2 – Ministry Education
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This is the first of two books exploring the implications of serving the risen Lord, Head of his Church, in the power of his Spirit.

The possibilities are mind boggling in our age when classrooms and churches use common technology such as laptops, memory sticks, iPads, iPhones, and data projection of power points and DVDs.

Fading into the past are the one hour services with wooden pews, hymn books and organs. The 21st century churches explode worldwide with flexible home groups, house churches and massive, fast communication on the internet, with emails and YouTube. Thousands of churches now have their own websites, podcasts of messages, and YouTube broadcasts. They can reach millions around the world. Many do.

This book, and its sequel, examine the possibilities and potential of this 21st century revolution, using this structure:

The Body of Christ, Part 1: Body Ministry

I. Body Ministry ——- with — II. Body Organization
1. Kingdom Authority — with — 6. Divine Headship
2. Obedient Mission — with — 7. Body Membership
3. Mutual Ministry —– with — 8. Servant Leadership
4. Spiritual Gifts ——- with — 9. Body Life
5. Body Evangelism —- with —10. Expanding Networks

The Body of Christ, Part 2: Ministry Education

11. From narrow to wide: Open Education
12. From centralized to de-centralized: Unlimited Education
13. From classrooms to life: Continuing Education
14. From pedagogy to self-directed learning: Adult Education
15. From competition to co-operation: Mutual Education
16. From closed to open: Theological Education
17. From general to specific: Contextual Education
18. From pre-service to in-service: Ministry Education

Detailed Contents of The Body of Christ, Part 1: Body Ministry

Section I. Body Ministry: from few to many

Chapter 1. From meetings to ministry: Kingdom Authority
1. Church and Kingdom
2. Signs of the Kingdom

Chapter 2. From making decisions to making disciples: Obedient Mission
1. Empowering
2. Discipling

Chapter 3. From spectators to participants: Mutual Ministry
1. Clergy
2. Laity

Chapter 4. From limited to unlimited: Spiritual Gifts
1. Unity
2. Diversity

Chapter 5. From programs to growing churches: Body Evangelism
1. Program Evangelism
2. Power Evangelism

Section II. Body Organization: from some to all

Chapter 6. From figurehead to functional head: Divine Headship
1. The Written Word
2. The Living Word

Chapter 7. From firm to flexible structures: Body Membership
1. The Organism
2. The Organization

Chapter 8. From management to equipping: Servant Leadership
1. Servanthood
2. Equipping for ministry

Chapter 9. From passive to active: Body Life
1. Concern for People
2. Concern for Task

Chapter 10. From maintenance to mission: Expanding Networks
1. Congregational Structures
2. Mission Structures

Anyone interested in the church as the living Body of Christ will find this book informative, and worth passing on to others.

Endorsements

by Rev. Dr Colin Warren, Former Principal of Alcorn College, and Senior Pastor of Rangeville Uniting Church  and founder of Freedom Life Centre, Toowoomba.

In this important work, Geoff explores the ministry of the whole body of Christ when Holy Spirit gifts are recognised and are encouraged to be exercised.  Then the artificial division between clergy and laity or pastor and non-pastor is removed.  At the same time there is the recognition of Holy Spirit endowed leadership gifting such as that between Paul and Timothy.  This means that Kingdom authority is expressed through Divine headship.  His emphasis on body ministry thus becomes a reality.

The church no longer consists of passive pew sitters but participants in fulfilling the command of Jesus, empowered by the Holy Spirit to preach repentance, heal the sick and cast out demon spirits, having the certain knowledge that He is with them as He promised “to the end of the age”.

Geoff points out that if the church is to live and grow in today’s world, it must recognise the need to emphasize relationships and adapt to change. This change will include such simple things as the way men and women both old and young dress, and allow others the freedom to dress differently as they attend places of worship in a non judgmental atmosphere.

There is, too, the need to realise the reality that many are affected by a global sense of fear of nuclear destruction and of accelerated and constant change and uncertainty.  The church can provide an atmosphere of security through rediscovering the unchanging gospel in a changing world.

Denominations that once were able to be exclusive and hold their numbers in rigid theological disciplines, have been invaded via cassettes, CD’s, DVD’s, and the internet that have widened the thinking horizons of their often theologically bound members, resulting in communication at spiritual levels not possible previously.

Geoff points out that if we are going to fulfil the Great Commission, we must first live the life of Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit.  It is only then that we can do the work of fulfilling Christ’s command to go.

I commend The Body of Christ, Part 1: Body Ministry for you to read.  All Christians will benefit greatly from reading this insightful book.

____________________

From the Foreword By Rev. Professor James Haire, Ph.D., Professor of Theology, Charles Sturt University, Canberra; Executive Director, Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture; Past President, Uniting Church in Australia; Former Principal, Trinity Theological College, Brisbane; Former Dean, Brisbane College of Theology; Former Head of the School of Theology, Griffith University; Former Missionary Theologian in Indonesia.

The being of the church and its life is predicated upon the grace of God in Jesus Christ as itself defining God’s action in the world for the reconciliation of creation, including humanity.  So its life is that which it receives from God in Christ, and which is continuously empowered by the Spirit.   The church’s very existence will be shaped by the manner in which it confesses this truth.   Thus, Christianity at heart, as it is expressed in the church, sees itself as being created and brought into being from outside itself.   Moreover, it ultimately understands itself as being given meaning from beyond itself.   It lives in the world in a very ambivalent manner.   It inevitably needs some structure and organization in the world.

The church needs to be analysed in order to prepare itself for mission in the changing situations of societies around the world.   However, these always must remain secondary.   Its primary self-understanding is that the church, the expression of Christianity in the world, is the object of God’s self-giving love and grace for the sake of the world.

In this very helpful and timely book, the Rev Dr Geoff Waugh takes up the implications of these issues and applies them to ministry within and beyond the church, the Body of Christ.   As the framework above indicates, Dr Waugh’s analysis, evaluation and application of the theology of the living Body of Christ inevitably is no less than truly revolutionary, as is his analysis, evaluation and application of the theology of the living Spirit’s work.

Dr Waugh has had a long and distinguished mission career, especially in education, in addressing the central Christian issues outlined above.   It has been my honour and my privilege to have served alongside him for eight years (1987–1994) in Trinity Theological College, in the Brisbane College of Theology, and in the School of Theology of Griffith University, in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.   He has been a dear and valued friend, and especially one who day-by-day in his life has lived out what he taught.   Moreover, he has had vast experience in his long teaching ministry, not only in Australia, but throughout the South Pacific, Asia, and in Africa.

His work is thus very important reading indeed for us all.

See detailed Contents in Body Ministry

Part 1 (this book) and Part 2: Ministry Education, now also in one volume: Body Ministry

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