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Ed Silvoso: Ekklesia

Ed Silvoso, Ekklesia: Rediscovering God’s Instrument for Global Transformation (Bloomington: MN: Chosen Books, 2014, 2017), 272 pages, ISBN 9780800798444.

Ed Silvoso has written a number of books, two of his best known works are: That None Should Perish, and Anointed for Business. He is the founder and president of Harvest Evangelism and is the leader of the Transform Our World Network. In this current volume he focuses on the church and how it can be used by God to transform the world.

The title of the book comes from the Greek work that is frequently translated as “church” in the New Testament. From other reading I have done, I know that some writers say that the word “church” means “those who are called out” and others say that it means “the assembly.” Silvoso, drawing on the secular meaning of the word, points out that there is also a governmental authority meaning in the word. This particular meaning is vitally important to the content of the book. The church has authority to transform the world because God, through the gospel and the power of the Holy Spirit, has given the church authority to do so.

Ed Silvoso

Ekklesia contains seventeen chapters. Most of these chapters are devoted to providing a fuller understanding of key biblical truths: the Gates of Hades, the Gospel, Proclamation, the Cross, the Great Commission, Cooperation With God, New Testament Baptisms, How to Baptize a Nation, the Ekklesia’s Social Agenda, the Incarnation, What God Loves the Most, Spiritual Authority, and the Ekklesia’s Operational Methodology.

The book draws from both biblical texts and more contemporary examples of the church in action. Silvoso mentions the activities of believers from a number of different places around the world including the Philippines, Thailand, Mexico, and the United States. Throughout the book he supplies specific details of what Christians have done in order to impact their part of the world.

Silvoso makes a strong case for doing ministry in the marketplace.

This book has a number of very commendable qualities. For example, it has a big vision; the author is focused on reaching nations, which is definitely something on the heart of Jesus (Matthew 24:14). It also advocates for the full participation of all of the people of God in ministry, which is a subject that the apostle Paul wrote about in Ephesians 4. In addition, the book makes a strong case for doing ministry in the marketplace, that is, in the business world, out in the public square. Some of the contemporary examples that Silvoso supplies demonstrate that the people of God are using their jobs to impact their culture. One thing in the book that I particularly enjoyed was the four-step strategy of ministry that the author set forth to impact the marketplace. These four steps come from Jesus’ instructions to the seventy in Luke 10. The four steps are: bless the lost, fellowship with them, minister to them, and proclaim the kingdom of God (page 33).

The church can impact the world!

Though I do not agree with everything in this book, there is much to be gained from reading it. The author cites significant gains for the kingdom in various places in the world; these may serve as an encouragement to those seeking to make a difference in their part of the world and may supply some ideas for them to implement. Some of the kingdom progress that is being seen around the world is due to the cooperation of believers not only in the same local church but also the cooperation of believers from different local assemblies. This book may be of particular interest to pastors and other Christians interested in making a difference in their part of “the field” (the world). The church can impact the world!

Reviewed by John P. Lathrop


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Category: Ministry, Winter 2018

About the Author: John P. Lathrop is a graduate of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and is an ordained minister with the International Fellowship of Christian Assemblies. He has written for a number of publications and is the author of four books Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, and Teachers Then and Now (Xulon Press, 2008), The Power and Practice of the Church: God, Discipleship, and Ministry (J. Timothy King, 2010), Answer the Prayer of Jesus: A Call for Biblical Unity (Wipf & Stock, 2011) and Dreams & Visions: Divine Interventions in Human Experience (J. Timothy King, 2012). He also served as co-editor of the book Creative Ways to Build Christian Community (Wipf & Stock, 2013). Amazon Author page. Facebook

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