The Spirit’s work of renewal surprises us by coming in a variety of forms. For example, the Spirit has
worked to renew the church through the sacraments, mission, discipleship, healing, conversion, social transformation and new church starts. Unfortunately, many of these forms have been over-contextualized in the models, myths and narratives of the Western empire and its culture. In particular, church planting has been susceptible to this. Thus church planting is often construed as a pragmatic way to increase the market value of a denomination, a local church, or an ecclesial personality through the development and deployment of stock models and wooden formulas aimed at mass production. Embrace: A Church Plant that Broke All the Rules does not follow this well-trodden. On the contrary, here is a serious apostolic effort that remains true to the Pauline spirit of evangelization through indigenous, incarnational, strategic urban church planting. Here is a story about how one church penetrated the heart of the city to offer the saving love of Christ in a way that is faithful, relevant and transformative to an un-churched, over-churched and de-churched generation that is said to “love Jesus but hate the church.” social justice and social action. In this wonderful new book, Gary Tyra shows that a robust doctrine of the Holy Spirit leads not to a crass and self-serving prosperity gospel but to prophetic speech and action, which is to say, to missional faithfulness to the one who gave up all power and glory and took the form of a servant in our midst. For the growing number of Pentecostal and charismatic-oriented Christians who are often the victims of stereotypes in the mainline denominations that they call home, this is must reading.
This site is a resource for church renewal offered by United Theological Seminary.