Item description for Revolution by George Barna...
World-renowned pollster George Barna has the numbers, and they indicate a revolution is already taking place within the Church--one that will impact every believer in America. Committed, born-again Christians are exiting the established church in massive numbers. Why are they leaving? Where are they going? And what does this mean for the future of the Church? Using years' worth of research data, and adhering to an unwavering biblical perspective, Barna predicts how this revolution will impact the organized church, how Christ's body of believers should react, and how individuals who are considering leaving (or those who have already left) can respond. For leaders working for positive change in the church and for believers struggling to find a spiritual community and worship experience that resonates, Revolution is here. Are you ready?
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Format: Audiobook, CD
Studio: Tyndale Audio
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 5.6" Width: 4.7" Height: 1" Weight: 0.3 lbs.
Release Date Oct 31, 2005
Publisher Tyndale House Publishers
ISBN 1414310382 ISBN13 9781414310381 UPC 031809110386
Availability 0 units.
More About George Barna
A native New Yorker, George Barna has filled executive roles in politics, marketing, advertising, media, research and ministry. He founded the Barna Research Group (now The Barna Group) in 1984 and helped it become the nation’s leading marketing research firm focused on the intersection of faith and culture. The company has served several hundred parachurch ministries and thousands of Christian churches throughout the country. It has also supplied research to numerous corporations and non-profit organizations, as well as to the U.S. Navy and U.S. Army.
To date, Barna has written 48 books, mostly addressing leadership, trends, church health and spiritual development. They include best-sellers such as Revolution, Transforming Children into Spiritual Champions, The Frog in the Kettle, and The Power of Vision. His most recent book is Revolutionary Parenting. Several of his books have received national awards. He has had more than 100 articles published in periodicals and writes a bi-weekly research report (The Barna Update) accessed by more than a million people each year, through his firm’s website (www.barna.org). His work is frequently cited as an authoritative source by the media. He has been hailed as "the most quoted person in the Christian Church today" and has been named by various media as one of the nation’s most influential Christian leaders.
He is a popular speaker at ministry conferences around the world and has taught at Pepperdine and Biola Universities and several seminaries. Barna served as a pastor of a large, multi-ethnic church and has been involved in several church start-ups.
After graduating summa cum laude from Boston College, Barna earned two Master's degrees from Rutgers University. At Rutgers, he was awarded the Eagleton Fellowship. He also received a doctorate from Dallas Baptist University. He lives with his wife (Nancy) and their three daughters (Samantha, Corban, Christine) in southern California. He enjoys reading novels, watching movies, playing guitar, and relaxing on the beach.
George Barna currently resides in Glendale Oxnard, in the state of California.
Reviews - What do customers think about Revolution?
R & R: Revolution and Restraint May 10, 2008
Barna has taken a courageous--some would say foolish--step. He has applied his years of research and observation, studied the Word of God, and come up with his version of where the future of the Church and Christianity will lead. He keeps it fairly simple, addressing the thoughts and concerns of those who remain within the framework of traditional local churches and those who have entered into a larger view of the Church.
I happen to be one of the latter. I grew up as a missionary's kid and pastor's kid. I saw the constant attempts of the church to raise healthy spiritual adherents, as well as to maintain some personal accountability among its members. My first twenty years were spent within a loving, yet somewhat stagnant environment of Christianity. I was gung-ho, but spent four years in a Bible college where I witnessed stale rules and attention to numbers and church growth, instead of vibrant relationships with Jesus. My next twenty years, I tried to change this system from within, hoping to gain the respect and position to bring about revolution.
I was spinning my wheels. I was trying to fix a machine that should be a living organism, the Body of Christ, rather than a ponderous beast of burden that covers its irrelevance with thirty minutes of feel-good worship time. While I know many who do love Jesus within that framework, I decided three years ago that I had to move into a larger view of the Church, a more organic one, if I was personally going to survive as a believer. I also did not want to spend my next twenty years watching things remain the same, watching politics define religion, watching moral values take precedence in a Pharisaical sense over the dynamic teachings of Jesus and a relationship with Him. (Good morals are important, but you can be a "good person" and know nothing of God.)
Barna has encapsulated so much of my thinking. He does so with excitement and grace. He stumbles a little, however, by showing too much restraint in his evaluation of the Revolution. He fails to go deeper into the hurts on both sides of this divide. He tries to validate Revolutionaries, while failing to deal directly with some of our potential pitfalls. For example, the one concern that continues to jump out at me in the Emergent Church is the somewhat lackadaisical approach toward the Word of God. This must be strengthened for this movement to continue healthily.
Thank you, Mr. Barna, for putting your reputation on the line and pointing out the vibrancy of this movement that some consider heresy. I am glad to be a part of the Revolution. I have grown personally, gained new interest in God's Word, and found more accountability through the deeper relationships of the Church on the street level. On the other hand, we need the gentle but firm reminders of the Foundation upon which we are built. Don't be afraid to help keep us in line. That, too, is a form of accountability and discipleship we often need.
Fantastic Insight Apr 25, 2008
Barna hits a home run with this very insightful look into the Church today. His description of a "Revolutionary" is right on, and his understanding of the struggle and suggestions for the future are very encouraging. There are, in fact, many of us who yearn to "be the Church and not just go to church". This book is a great manifesto that articulates deep seeded passions to follow Jesus Christ in a way sorely lacking in the church today. Be prepared to either have your world turned upside down, or to let out a resounding cheer as you see him as either a heretic or a prophet. This revolution will change the world.
The Revolution is Here Apr 19, 2008
this book is drastically different fromt the typical statistal research analysis presentations Barna provides. Nevertheless, it is his most awesome and inspiring work. After many years of research, Barna now draws his own conclusion. There have been so many reviews written, that I wish not to be repetitive. I consider myself to be a revolutionary inside and out. I pastor a 'traditonal' church. I believe that Barna may have been somewhat inaccurate in his depiction of the drastic decline in church attendance. On the one hand, if one observes what is going on in the church, the shift and decline in traditional church membership is occuring rapidly. But I also see the church as going through a 'Walmart' phase - when the mom and pop stores were forced to close down because of the one stop shop Walmarts. The same thing appears to be happening right now, smaller traditional churches are very quickly losing ground to mega church models and television produced ministries and conferences. I am sure some mega churches will decline, but I don't see much let up in their growth. Celebrities, TV, personality, youth programs, dynamic music, and prosperity promises will always attract in large #s.. I believe that some of the small group modeled churches may help in the development of revolutionaries. In his next book, Pagan Christianity, Barna tries to persuade us that loosely organized house churches are the legitimate model for real Christianity. He argues against the modern tradional church. Pagan christianity by George Barna is one of the worst, unbiblically balanced books I have read. Shame on George Barna for producing such an awful product. From one who considers myself to be a 'Revolutionary' and truly enjoyed the book 'Revolutionary', I must say that 'Pagan Christianity' was awful. It was so controversial that the publisher has put a 'disclaimer' on the first page. I have never seen anything like it. If it were not for the name George Barna, no one else would have riked publishing such a book.
Heresy. Pure heresy. Mar 5, 2008
Barna's over-riding message is that "whether you become completely disassociated from a local church is irrelevant to me (and, within boundaries, to God)." This ignores all precedent and instruction laid out in the book of Acts and Paul's letters. Heb. 10.24 and Prov 18.1 immediately come to mind. Paul's practice was to set up churches, not "mini-movements" -- churches, with qualified appointed leaders, with accountability, with established principles of church governance. And we are commanded to follow Paul's example.
The problems with this book are numerous:
1) It is heretical to say that the local church is unnecessary or irrelevant.
2) It encourages people to be lone rangers, a direct violation of Scripture. His ideas are very AMERICAN but they are not CHRISTIAN.
3) It ignores the value of church governance, pastoral oversight, and the functioning of the church as a body / family.
4) It bashes the bride of Christ. Mercilessly and arrogantly.
5) There is no hard data to review! Let's see the actual surveys -- how were the questions worded. Let's see where the respondents were drawn from. What about Barna's own personal story -- let's see how his "research" was affected by his personal biases, his own "bad church" experience.
6) God gave some to be elders, etc. The qualifications for elders are set forth in Timothy & Titus. Implicitly, what this guy is saying is, "Leave the local church. Appoint yourself an elder." But many who will read the book will not be anywhere near qualified to be elders, neither for themselves nor for their house church group, if they lead one. He's validating anyone who leaves the local church, telling them that they are the truly mature, on-fire Christians, and the people in the local church are weaker Christians. That's pure nonsense -- there are both mature and immature believers in any setting.
7) There is no such thing as a cyberchurch, nor will there ever be. The entire notion is just a superficial way for Christian malcontents to justify their rejection of the God-ordained concept of the local church body.
The title says it all: He adamantly wants people to Revolt. But instead of asking them to revolt against sin, or against bad church practices, he's asking them to revolt against the entire concept of the local church, which really was established by Jesus and by the Holy Spirit. May God have mercy on him and bring him to repentance.
A Churchless (and Dangerous) Revolution Mar 3, 2008
In "Revolution," Barna argues that there are over 20 million faithful and spiritually healthy Christians who see no reason to be connected to a local church body.
Barna's argument contains many exegetical and theological flaws. First, Barna's approach leads to the dismissal of many passages of Scripture regarding church polity, such as the roles of pastors and deacons, church ordinances, and congregational church discipline. How can church discipline be enforced if there is no centralized local body? What is the individual in sin being excommunicated from? We cannot dismiss the local church as some human invention; to do so is extremely harmful. Instead, we should work within the local church towards biblical faithfulness, expecting God to persevere and revitalize His churches into healthier institutions.
Next, the New Testament is clear that those who love Christ will love the things which Christ loves. Christ loves the Church and died for Her. As Christians, we are to model this love towards one another. We cannot do this outside of covenanting together with other like-minded believers in a local church setting. Having coffee and chatting about the latest sermon you heard on the Internet is not enough.
Finally, Barna's numbers simply do not add up. Barna claims that there are over 20 million "revolutionaries" deeply committed to the Christian faith. He also says that of the 77 million Americans claiming to be born-again Christians, roughly 7 million of them have a biblical worldview. Even if all 7 million are "revolutionaries" (and they are not), then over 13 million (at least 65%) of those claiming this "Revolution" do not have a biblical understanding of Christianity. It seems the research shows that this "Revolution" is not all that healthy.
How should the local church respond to this so-called "Revolution"? First, we must recognize that the neglect of the local church is contrary to Scripture. Also, we must exhort all who repent and believe in the Gospel to covenant together with other believers in a local church, so that they may both serve and be served within that body. This is the command of Scripture, even if our churches are not as healthy as they should be.