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Keeping Christ in Ministry by Dr. John H.…

Keeping Christ in Ministry (edition 2012)

by Dr. John H. Harbison

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107880,191 (3.06)None
Title:Keeping Christ in Ministry
Authors:Dr. John H. Harbison
Info:Kirkdale Press (2012), Kindle Edition, 253 pages
Collections:Your library, 2013, Early Reviewer

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This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This book is fascinating in its subject matter and in its scope. I enjoyed reading it and looking up the Scriptures that he referred to (which are many). It is not often that you find a popular book with so much depth outside of an academic theology available. But then again, this is his theology of ministry as it should relate to Christ. Sit back and get ready for a great set of lessons on the life of Christ and how it should impact the way ministry is done. ( )
  MAPitcher | May 9, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A very thought provoking book in which the author reminds us that keeping Jesus at the heart of our ministry, what ever that may be, is crucial to having a successful ministry. ( )
  ambrithill | Apr 8, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
I found the premise of this book interesting - a recognition that all Christian ministries are part of, and should be modeled after Jesus' own ministry, rather than what happens to fashionable at the time, leading to reflections on the different aspects of Christ's ministry that we should seek to enter into and how we should make that part of our own ministries.

Sadly, I felt that the book did not really live up to its own stated aims all that well. It felt more like a series of devotional readings on the character of Jesus, and if viewed as such they do make sense. However, this seems at odds with the stated intention, and I would have preferred to see a greater emphasis on the applications to our own lives of the different aspects of Jesus' ministry.

I had other problems, such as the rather narrow set of sources referred to, and the sometimes confusing arguments (for example, in the introduction Harbison states, correctly in my opinion, that churches cannot rely on specific activities or programmes as a guarantee of success, but rather should seek to share in Christ's ministry; however in a later chapter he criticises some churches for stopping having weekly prayer meetings).

I should note that Dr Harbison comes from a more conservative church background than me, I was aware of this as I read the book and I hope that it has not negatively affected my review. However, I am aware that this difference may have played some part in my views. ( )
  mysticed | Mar 16, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Dr Harbison's Keeping Christ in Ministry explores the concept that the basis of Christian ministry is Christ himself and therefore contemporary ministers must pay attention to how their work is bound up in Christ's work.

Some of the ministries identified are commonly recognised in current practice, such as prophet and teacher. Other choices though are less obvious, such as "Jesus the Light" or "Jesus the Immanuel". However, these are the riches of the book. For example, Harbinson's summary of "Immanuel ministry" is that Christ was God with us and we follow in his train by representing God to those around us. Each chapter in the bulk of the book follows a similar pattern and it can feel a touch repetitive at times; perhaps the answer is to treat it as a resource to meditate on over time rather than (in reviewer mode) a work to read from cover to cover as quickly as possible?

It is worth noting that the ebook edition I reviewed was greatly extended by two sets of supplementary material. The first was three chapters from another book by the same publisher (John Bornschein’s The Front Line: A Prayer Warrior’s Guide to Spiritual Battle); the second was the text of every Bible reference given in the book. Bonus material is a nice idea but these account for half the length of the volume, which means your ereader is burdened with a volume that takes twice as much space as it needs to. A single page with links to two free downloads would have been a more medium-friendly approach. I would give Harbison's content a 4/5 rating but this encumbered edition only 3/5. ( )
  wulf | Feb 6, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
These days, it seems that there are as almost as many approaches to ministry as there are churches.

In a well-meaning attempt to share the gospel and to get people inside their doors, many churches have become seeker-sensitive, relying on tools such as popular events, programs, and snazzy marketing tools to help increase their numbers.

Some churches even play certain types of music and adapt specific dress codes to appeal to specific audiences.

Are these approaches biblical? Is this really what ministry is all about?

In his e-book Keeping Christ In Ministry, Dr. John H. Harbison explores these questions by taking an in-depth look into the heart of ministry. He examines 11 aspects of the ministry of Jesus Christ and discusses how Christ-followers are called to participate in each of them.

If you are a pastor, church worker, or serious bible student who is interested in learning more about what Christ-centered ministry entails or exploring some of the different roles that Jesus embodied during His time on earth, than you may find this book educational and informative.

If you are a more casual reader, however, this book may not appeal to you because Dr. Harbison’s treatment of the subject can be somewhat scholarly and dry at times.

The book also addresses spiritual gifts and is theologically conservative in its approach. ( )
  CreateWithJoy | Feb 3, 2013 |
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