Sunday, September 10, 2006


092609: additional descriptions added to introductory section
091306: resequenced by pub. date
091106: link added

Well, I am at the very beginnings of my Th.M. thesis. This semester I will be writing a history of reasearch, researching/interviewing/blog-surfing a number of emerging church practitioners and theologians and distilling the ecclesiology beneath and behind emerging church belief and practice.

The topic: an articulation and biblical evaluation of the ecclesiology of the emerging-missional church.

This is a very rough draft of the bibliography for the history of research chapter and will be updated as I go along.

thesis links on

Inside the Organic Church: Learning from 12 Emerging Congregations
by Bob Whitesel
Abingdon Press (August 2006)

How (Not) to Speak of God
by Peter Rollins
Paraclete Press (MA) (July 6, 2006)

Breaking the Missional Code: Your Church Can Become a Missionary in Your Community
by Ed Stetzer, David Putman
B&H Publishing Group (May 2006)

Emerging Churches: Creating Christian Community in Postmodern Cultures
by Eddie Gibbs, Ryan K. Bolger
Baker Academic (November 1, 2005)

Becoming Conversant with the Emerging Church: Understanding a Movement and Its Implications

by D. A. Carson
Zondervan (May 1, 2005)

The Out of Bounds Church?: Learning to Create a Community of Faith in a Culture of Change
by Steve Taylor
Zondervan/Youth Specialties (February 1, 2005)

Future Church: Ministry In A Post-seeker Age
by Jim L. Wilson
B&H Publishing Group (September 30, 2004)

The Complex Christ
by Kester Brewin
SPCK (Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge) (August 23, 2004)

Mission-Shaped Church
Church House Publishing (January 20, 2004)

Being as Communion
by John D. Zizioulas
Darton,Longman & Todd Ltd; New Ed edition (January 12, 2004)

The Emerging Church

by Dan Kimball
Zondervan (March 1, 2003)

The Church on the Other Side
by Brian McLaren
Zondervan (January 1, 2003)

The Difficult But Indispensable Church
by Norma Cook Everist
Fortress Press 2002

The Missionary Nature of the Church
by Johannes Blauw
Lutterworth Press; New Ed edition (September 2002)

Announcing the Reign of God

by Mortimer Arias
Wipf and Stock Publishers (June 2001)

Houses that Change the World
by Wolfgang Simson
Paternoster Publishing (March 6, 2001)

In Search of Authentic Faith: How Emerging Generations Are Transforming the Church
by Steve Rabey
WaterBrook Press; 1st edition (January 16, 2001)

The Essence of the Church: A Community Created by the Spirit
by Craig Van Gelder
Baker Books; Reprint edition (April 2000)

On Being the Church: Essays on the Christian Community

by Colin E. Gunton (Editor), Daniel W. Hardy (Editor)
T. & T. Clark Publishers, Ltd.; New Ed edition (May 1999)

Confident Witness-Changing World: Rediscovering the Gospel in North America (Gospel and Our Culture Series)
by Craig Van Gelder
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (April 1999)

Sanctorum Communio: A Theological Study of the Sociology of the Church
by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Clifford J. Green, Nancy Lukens
Augsburg Fortress Publishers; New Ed edition (November 1998)

Postmodernity: Christian Identity in a Fragmented Age
by Paul Lakeland
Fortress Press 1997

The New Testament and the People of God (Christian Origins and the Question of God)
by N. T. Wright
Augsburg Fortress Publishers; 1st North American Ed edition (September 1996)

The Open Secret: An Introduction to the Theology of Mission
by Lesslie Newbigin
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company; Revised edition (February 1995)

The Open Secret: An Introduction to the Theology of Mission
by Lesslie Newbigin
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company; Revised edition (February 1995)

The Church

by Hans Kung
Hyperion Books (December 1994)

The Church in the Power of the Spirit
by Jurgen Moltmann
Fortress Press 1993

The Church in the Power of the Spirit: A Contribution to Messianic Ecclesiology
by Jurgen Moltmann
Augsburg Fortress Publishers; 1st Frtrss edition (October 1993)

Gods Missionary People: Rethinking the Purpose of the Local Church
by Charles Van Engen
Baker Academic (August 1991)

Incarnational Ministry: The Presence of Christ in Church, Society, and Family (Essays in Honor of Ray S. Anderson)

by Christian D. Kettler, Todd H. Speidell
Alba House (July 1990)

The Gospel in a Pluralist Society
by Lesslie Newbigin
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (December 1989)

Foolishness to the Greeks: The Gospel and Western Culture
by Leslie Newbigin
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (April 1986)

Be My Witnesses: The Church's Mission, Message and Messengers
by Darrell Guder
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (October 1985)

The Church
by Wolfhart Pannenberg, Keith Crim (Translator)
Westminster John Knox Pr (March 1983)

A Community of Character
by Stanley Hauerwas
University of Notre Dame Press (October 1981)

The Company of the Committed
by Elton Trueblood
HarperCollins (paper) (December 1979)

The Incendiary Fellowship
by Elton Trueblood
HarperSanFrancisco (September 1, 1978)

NOTE: This is a rumination ("1. The act of pondering; meditation. 2. The act or process of chewing cud." American Heritage Dictionary) in search of synergy ("1. The interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects.")


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“Unless otherwise noted Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”


  1. So. Laura, you get to read all these and this is your core business? ;-)

    Why do I feel so green?

    Somewhere, my life took a wrong turn ...

  2. Cool eh... of course I took a rather circuitous route, taking 15 years between my sophomore and junior years of college to be a preschool teacher, warehouseman, warehouse assistant manager, and production control clerk. The a year and a half to finish up the bachelors, six and a half years to complete a Master of Divinity, and now three for a Master of Theology. I plan on a doctorate, though only God knows how long that will take.

    Still, it is cool that learning about God and his church is a major part of my life. And it’s becoming a bigger part as time goes along. For now, I squeeze all this in between a full-time job and part time ministry.

    My educational maxim is that as long as you’re still breathing, there is still time.

  3. Any reason why McLaren 'A Generous Orthodoxy' is not on the list? Frank Viola is also absent.

  4. McLaren is absent because I've not updated in a few days (he is on the 'real' list).

    Viola will show up in the thesis proper, but probably not in this initial chapter. This first chapter will be more akin to qualitative research,"interviewing" emerging practitioners and discerning the ecclesiology beneath.

    Both are now on my page (

    I just turned in the provisional bibliography, so I will be updating this post tomorrow night.

  5. Hi Laura,

    Just thought "Leaving Church: A Memoir of Faith" by Barbara Brown Taylor might be of interest to you. See

  6. I have heard about the book and it may indeed provide valuable insight. thanks for the tip.

  7. Do not forget Biola's own Truth and the New Kind of Christian by R. Scott Smith (Crossway 2005).

    May the Lord be with you in your research.

  8. KC, indeed. I will be spending the bulk of my time on ecclesiology and missiology (which he may speak on, but I've not yet read Smith's book), but truth, theology, and moral boundaries will be included (even if in a footnote).

    Thanks for the encouragement. I've begun to realize what an undertaking this is.