The Unfinished Church: God's Broken and Redeemed Work-in-Progress

By Rob Bentz

The Unfinished Church

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The Unfinished Church: God's Broken and Redeemed Work-in-Progress

By Rob Bentz

“I love Jesus but hate the church.”

We hear this kind of talk all the time, but what if it’s profoundly mistaken? Rob Bentz challenges readers to rethink this popular—yet ultimately harmful—mentality.

Drawing on his experience as a pastor, Bentz helps those disenchanted with the church to rediscover its importance for the Christian life by examining the biblical, theological, and historical reasons why Christ’s followers should embrace gospel-centered community—even when it’s hard.

Honest yet hopeful, The Unfinished Church provides an encouraging look at God’s ultimate building project: his church.


Author:

Rob Bentz (MDiv, Reformed Theological Seminary) is the lead pastor of Woodside Bible Church in White Lake, Michigan. Rob has written numerous articles for various ministry websites and is currently a featured blog writer at ChurchLeaders.com. He and his wife, Bonnie, have two children and live in Highland, Michigan.


Endorsements:

“Reader beware! If you don’t want to be inspired to love quirky, diverse, often unlovable, certainly sinful people—like those in your church—well, put this book down now. Rob Bentz seems to think this is precisely what God had in mind when he redeemed us and planted us in a local church. Personally, I’d rather be entertained in a church full of people like me who are easy to get along with. Bentz says otherwise. Of course, he’s right, which is why this may be one of the most important books on the church you read this year.”
Mark Galli, Editor in Chief, Christianity Today

“No one is fool enough to insult a man’s wife and then expect that man’s companionship. But this is the strange spectacle we witness today: men, women, children loudly denouncing or openly ridiculing the bride of Christ, his church, and thinking that Jesus is happy to hear it. Even a careless reading of Scripture reveals the fierce and tender heart Jesus has toward his bride, and his swift judgment on any who seek to hurt her. The Unfinished Church is a clarion call for Christians to be the church, to love the church, and to serve the church until, as the apostle Paul says, we all ‘attain to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.’ Convicting, wise, and urgent.”
Mark Buchanan, author, Your Church Is Too Safe

“If you love the church and are not sure why, you are going to love this book. I’m a cynical old preacher who can’t stay away from the church. Now I know why and I’m a bit less cynical. What a wonderful book! It’s a gift to the church.”
Steve Brown, Host, Key Life Radio Program; author, Three Free Sins: God Isn't Mad At You 

“Bentz is right. Church is a group of struggling sinners who must pursue one another in love as God’s community! It is essential for us to embrace this calling with joy if we are to declare the glory of the Lord to all peoples. There is no greener-grass assembly or ideal congregation; each assembly and every church member is in need of greater grace, patience, mercy, humility, and endurance from the Spirit of God. The church for whom our Savior died has a splendor that works in the midst of messiness. The Unfinished Church is a great exhortation to live out the gospel as people being conformed to the image of Christ.”
Eric C. Redmond, Assistant Professor of Bible, Moody Bible Institute; Pastor of Adult Ministries, Calvary Memorial Church, Oak Park, Illinois

“In a day when so many Christians doubt the importance of the church, The Unfinished Church is a richly biblical and practical display of what God is doing through his church. The presentation is popular, but not superficial. It is fun to read, but serious business. Every follower of Jesus needs to know what is in this book.”
Richard L. Pratt Jr., President, Third Millennium Ministries

“Here is a deep yet accessible book that paints a vivid doctrine of the church. Bentz’s wide interaction with theologians and pastoral insights will benefit all readers. Excellent discussion material at the end of each chapter makes it ‘small-group friendly,’ and his warm and hopeful responses may soften hardened critics of the bride of Christ. I highly recommend The Unfinished Church.”
Chris Brauns, Pastor, The Red Brick Church, Stillman Valley, Illinois; author, Unpacking Forgiveness, Bound Together, and When the Word Leads Your Pastoral Search

“If you truly care about the struggle of integrating your faith into this modern world, please read The Unfinished Church. In this engaging and accessible book, Rob Bentz has woven together rich personal anecdotes, insight from astute thinkers, careful examinations of our ancient Scriptures, and even snippets from contemporary music into a focused, substantive, and tremendously helpful book. Here you’ll find relevant questions, tough answers, and, perhaps most importantly, a pathway to life-affirming conversation about the stuff that really matters.”
Dan Merchant, author/filmmaker, Lord, Save Us from Your Followers

The Unfinished Church is a refreshing reminder that God uses our unity in Christ as well as our diversity to reach different people for his kingdom. Rob Bentz helpfully outlines biblical truths about God’s church, his bride, that are sure to bring contemplation, conviction, and a change of heart for those of us willing to be challenged.”
Leah O'Brien-Amico, three-time Olympic gold medalist, USA softball

“Rich with wisdom and insight, The Unfinished Church is for every believer desiring an enhanced understanding of the call of Jesus regarding the local church. In this transformational book, Rob Bentz takes us on a historical, practical, and enjoyable journey from an unfinished church on the pink sands of Bermuda to the gray corners of a garage in Michigan. Authentic, honest, forgiving, and humble, Rob writes with a deep understanding of gospel grace and the sovereignty of God while standing on the shoulders of giants like Bonhoeffer and Bunyan. The Unfinished Church paints a beautiful picture of God’s long-term plan for the body of believers living counterculturally in a world gone mad!”
Jimmy Dodd, President, PastorServe

“Rob Bentz has written a clear, responsible, and Scripture-soaked take on the way God interacts with us, and the way we interact with Christ’s bride: the church. Rob’s love for the church is evident on every page.”
Ted Kluck, author, Robert Griffin III: Athlete, Leader, Believer; coauthor, Why We Love the Church: In Praise of Institutions and Organized Religion


Related Media:


Table of Contents:

Part 1: The Foundation

  1. God’s Called-Out Community
  2. God’s Redeemed Community

Part 2: The Construction

  1. God’s Eclectic, Intriguing, and Quirky Construction Crew
  2. Love One Another: It Really Is about Jesus
  3. Encourage One Another: Giving a Blast of Gospel-Centered Truth
  4. Serve One Another: Putting Our Hands into Action—and More
  5. Dwell in Unity: Jesus Loves His Church, So You Should Too

Part 3: The Completion

  1. Jesus Finishes His Building Project

Specifications:

Category: Church Ministry
Christian Living
Format: Paperback
Case Quantity: 10
Page Count: 176
ISBN-10: 1-4335-4006-1
ISBN-13: 978-1-4335-4006-6
Size: 5.25 in x 8.25 in
Weight: 7.1 ounces
Published: May 31, 2014