Evangelicals Around the World: a book review

Evangelicalism is the Christian movement I was born into and find my spiritual home. Whereas other Christian traditions have an impressive tradition and long pedigree, Evangelicals can be part of an Evangelical denomination, exist within a wider (non-Evangelical) tradition, or be denominationally unaffiliated.  There is no central teaching magistarium so there is a wide diversity in Evangelical doctrine and spirituality; however all Evangelicals hold to the veracity and authority of scripture, cling tenaciously to salvation through Jesus Christ and the missional imperative of preaching the gospel.

Evangelicals Around the World: A Global Handbook for the 21st Century aims at giving an overview of the world Evangelical movement in all its diversity. Edited by Brian Stiller, Todd Johnson, Karen Stiller and Mark Hutchinson with contributors from all over the world. Brian Stiller begins the book with an introduction to the World Evangelical Alliance (formerly the World Evangelical Fellowship), a transnational organization in which he is the global ambassador. Albert Hickman then provides a brief chronology of 200 important events in Evangelical History before they turn to the essays in this volume,

Roughly the first half the book focuses on issues that characterize the movement and the second half profiles the evangelical movement in geographical context. So it begins with chapters on the evangelical identity and mission, ecumenism and Evangelical interaction with other faiths, the Pentecostal and Charismatic (which overlaps Evangelicalism), and essays about mission and evangelism, prayer, social justice, politics, science, marketplace, stewardship, etc.  The later chapters show statistical data by global regions (the Middle East, Africa, Latin America, North America, Asia, Europe, Oceania) and discuss the unique challenges facing Evangelicals (and Christians in general) on each continent.

This is a good resource book to have on hand. As with all multi-contributor volumes, there are chapters that stand out, and some that are overly simple. It demonstrates well  the wide diversity of the movement. Noteable contributors include R. Paul Stevens (Evangelicals and the Marketplace), Ron Sider (Evangelicals and Social Justice), Miriam Adeney (Evangelicals and Other Religions), Timothy George (Evangelicals and Roman Catholics), and more.

The statistical data ad regional essays were particularly useful for me as I prepared a prayer guide for a prayer event for my church. I give this four stars.

Note: I received this book from BookLook Bloggers and Thomas Nelson in exchange for my honest review.

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