Whenever you think about practical publications focusing upon church life, you probably think of 9Marks! Over the past few years, the various authors in the 9Marks series have produced a number of excellent resources. Many have become modern classics on church life/health.
Mark Dever is not only the founder of 9Marks but he is also the face of 9Marks. It is, after all, his original book on the marks of a healthy church that initiated 9Marks. His newest book, The Church, is another fine addition to the publications he has released to this point.
While every single 9Marks title is highly practical, The Church is both practical and theological. The theme of The Church is the realization of the Gospel in a visible form. Dever masterfully unpacks the Gospel centrality of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Further, he does not turn a blind eye to the varying views of participating in this sacraments. This section of the book was highly engaging. Dever also affords a fair amount of attention to the role of deacons and elders in the local church. As always, Dever takes great care in unpacking and interacting with the various views of qualifications for these positions and what these roles look like in the local church.
Overall, The Church is a useful book that is well-written and is an enjoyable read. I recommend it for anyone involved in church life!