Dogs and Doghouses: Rethinking Church

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Trafford Publishing, 2004 - Religion - 148 pages
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"We live in an age when people can't seem to tell the difference between a dog and a dog-house." So goes the comparison made by Andy Decker in his newly released Dogs & Doghouses, Rethinking "Church". Considering the contemporary Christian landscape, and using the Bible as the, "sole rule of faith," are we prepared to dismiss as unnecessary tradition many of the things we take for granted when going to what has come to be called church? When you pick up this book prepare to have your thinking on what it means to be a Christian challenged in a direct and significant manner. When you are finished you will have been asked serious questions about not only what you believe, but more importantly, why you believe those things. Decker takes the reader to task on many levels emphasizing the whole while that we should indeed love the Lord with not only our hearts and souls, but with our minds as well.

The book and its many comparisons are based on the simple premise that the Bible should be the basis of Christianity. Anything else needs to be considered well-intentioned extras (at best) or superstitious idolatry (at worst). Decker offers three broad areas of topics (what is a church, the roles and responsibilities of church leadership, and how a Christian should give) only after providing an up-front list of assumptions that allow us to hear his biases from the first chapter. The final three chapters will impress the reader to apply what he or she has just read. He urges a resetting of the ancient landmarks that are often missing from today's Christian lives. Daring to use the idea of "a correct worship," in an age of, "here's what it means to me," Decker reminds us that the Bible means something and that the beginning of wisdom is still the fear of the Lord; that repentance still means setting aside what lives in the unrepentant heart for the better ways found in the scriptures.

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Eleven Assumptions and Some Observations
Are We Too Superstitious?
What Should Christianity Be Based On?
You Can Understand the Bible
Everyone is Not Always Right
Whats Wrong with these Pictures?
Spiritual Building vs Earthly Building
Bible Leaders and Ministries
The Signs of Giving
A Final Test in Being Honest
So Why Should I Care?
Remember Josiah
A Lofty Ideal
Modern Epistle

Church Defined

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