Christian Book Review | Rethinking the Church by James Emery White

Rethinking the Church by James Emery White, Grand Rapids, MI, Baker Books July 1, 2003. 181 pages. Reviewed by Thomas C. Wilcox.


Examining What We Can Do Different and Why

In Rethinking the Church by James Emery White, he challenges the church and her leaders to rethink if what they are doing is actually effective and if it is even what God wants them to be doing.

White goes through seven key areas of the church from fundamental questions all the way to our communities and structure that we must begin rethinking. In each of these areas, White challenges the “traditional” way of doing things by giving us stories of people and churches implementing these classical approaches in our modern-day context, the message is that much of what we were doing in the 1960s will not work for today. We need to change our approach!

And that’s exactly what White advocates, a new way of asking these questions and making these connections that stands out as effective for the day in which we live.

All throughout the book, White maintains a respectful tone even as he is challenging us to rethink what we are doing and why we are doing it.

What I found most helpful in understanding these concepts are the real-life stories that White brings to the table. And while I disagreed with some of his conclusions or particular emphasis, I do believe he is on the right track and can teach us a lot!

My hope is that many churches and church leaders will get ahold of this book and implement it in order to become even more effective in their callings!

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