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A Church Called Tov: Forming a Goodness Culture That Resists Abuses of…

by Scot McKnight

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1182207,623 (4.19)None
What is the way forward for the church?Tragically, in recent years, Christians have gotten used to revelations of abuses of many kinds in our most respected churches--from Willow Creek to Harvest, from Southern Baptist pastors to Sovereign Grace churches. Respected author and theologian Scot McKnight and former Willow Creek member Laura Barringer wrote this book to paint a pathway forward for the church.We need a better way. The sad truth is that churches of all shapes and sizes are susceptible to abuses of power, sexual abuse, and spiritual abuse. Abuses occur most frequently when Christians neglect to create a culture that resists abuse and promotes healing, safety, and spiritual growth.How do we keep these devastating events from repeating themselves? We need a map to get us from where we are today to where we ought to be as the body of Christ. That map is in a mysterious and beautiful little Hebrew word in Scripture that we translate "good," the word tov.In this book, McKnight and Barringer explore the concept of tov--unpacking its richness and how it can help Christians and churches rise up to fulfill their true calling as imitators of Jesus.… (more)
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Rating: 5 stars of 5

A Church Called Tov is perhaps one of the most important books I have read this year. I encourage everyone who considers themselves part of the body of Christ to read it and take its wisdom to heart.

Scot begins by talking about how we create toxic cultures in our church environments and what contributes to the formation of and sustaining of those types of environments, as well as why they are harmful. After presenting the bad news, he transitions to what we can focus on to create church environments that reflect the heart of Jesus for people. It’s such a good book. Practical, relevant and sound. Highly recommend. ( )
  erindarlyn | Jan 21, 2023 |
In sharp contrast to abusive churches and celebrity pastors, the authors challenge churches to become more tov (good) or Christlike. They look at a variety of characteristics that would exemplify this focus and highlight cultivating these characteristics, not through specifics programs or functions but a continual return to the pursuit of being Christlike. ( )
  4leschats | Jan 5, 2022 |
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Epigraph
Never underestimate the power of the environment you work in
to gradually transform who you are. When you choose to work
at a certain company, you are turning yourself into the sort of
person who works in that company. . . . Moreover, living life
in a pragmatic, utilitarian manner turns you
into a utilitarian pragmatist.

DAVID BROOKS, THE SECOND MOUNTAIN
There are good guys and bad guys, and the bad guys, using
illegitimate methods, are trying to bring about an evil state
of affairs. This can only be averted if the good guys mobilize
their forces, recruit people from the sidelines (who are in danger
of being seduced by the bad guys), and press forward
to glorious victory.

ROGER C. SCHANK AND ROBERT P. ABELSON,
KNOWLEDGE AND MEMORY: THE REAL STORY
An organization or culture that perpetuates abuse will question
the motives of those who ask questions, make the discussion of
problems the problem, condemn those who condemn, silence those who break silence, and descend upon those who dissent.

WADE MULLEN
The villainies of villains are evil;
they devise wicked devices
to ruin the poor with lying words,
even when the plea of the needy is right.

ISAIAH 32:7, NRSV
Dedication
For the Wounded Resisters
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[Foreword] The church is part of the good news of Jesus.
[Introduction] On March 23, 2018, my husband and I (Laura) were paying for our dinner at a local restaurant when we received a text message from my parents, with a link to a breaking news story in the Chicago Tribune.
Culture is important.
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What is the way forward for the church?Tragically, in recent years, Christians have gotten used to revelations of abuses of many kinds in our most respected churches--from Willow Creek to Harvest, from Southern Baptist pastors to Sovereign Grace churches. Respected author and theologian Scot McKnight and former Willow Creek member Laura Barringer wrote this book to paint a pathway forward for the church.We need a better way. The sad truth is that churches of all shapes and sizes are susceptible to abuses of power, sexual abuse, and spiritual abuse. Abuses occur most frequently when Christians neglect to create a culture that resists abuse and promotes healing, safety, and spiritual growth.How do we keep these devastating events from repeating themselves? We need a map to get us from where we are today to where we ought to be as the body of Christ. That map is in a mysterious and beautiful little Hebrew word in Scripture that we translate "good," the word tov.In this book, McKnight and Barringer explore the concept of tov--unpacking its richness and how it can help Christians and churches rise up to fulfill their true calling as imitators of Jesus.

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