The Church Awakening: An Urgent Call for Renewal

For this post I’m going to do something I rarely do.

I want to share with you why I’ve written my newest book, The Church Awakening: An Urgent Call for Renewal. Truth be told, part of the reason I wrote the book is because of you, my fellow pastors.

CHAHB-A-ZoomOurs is a whole new world, and nothing has been more adversely affected by postmodernism than the church and its relationship to God’s Word. When the Bible loses its central place in the church’s worship—even if good things replace it—the fallout is biblical ignorance. The longer substitutes replace the preaching of the Word as the centerpiece of Christian worship, the more we will witness the intensifying drift into ignorance. Over time, a congregation that is distant from the Word of God seeks more entertainment and less biblical truth.

The slumbering evangelical church has now bought into this way of thinking. I have worked hard to explain why and how in this book. But let me add that I have not written this volume just to point out all that’s wrong. That is not my intention. My writing has always had an emphasis on grace, which is God’s emphasis in the Bible. Each chapter addresses solutions—not just problems—and points to the hope that God offers in His Word.

I have written The Church Awakening primarily to two groups of people. First, to serious-thinking churchgoers, who know there is a better way. In the Bible there was a group of clear-thinking, tough-minded men called the “sons of Issachar” (1 Chron. 12:32). They were those who “understood the times and knew what Israel should do.” We need that same clear-headed discernment today in the church. And along with discernment, we need an equal supply of courage. My aim is to ignite that passion within those who are willing to think seriously.

I am also writing to you pastors, especially to those who are on the fence, who need a voice of permission to buck the tide and to put the preaching of the Word of God back in its central place of the church’s worship.

In my almost fifty years in ministry, I have never been more passionate, or hopeful, for The Church Awakening—that is, for the church to wake up, to see how far it has drifted, to begin walking with God, and to engage the culture for Jesus Christ.

It is my hope that God will use this new volume in a powerful way to contribute to the master plan Jesus is building. He was the One who promised: “I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it” (Matt. 16:18).

—Chuck

P. S. If you want to pick up a copy of the book, it’s available in The Book Shoppe.  You might also enjoy watching the video below.

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Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Thanks Chuck…thanks
    It struck a chord and deep inside the Lord said, I need to help our church. We teeter on the edge;we have reorganized and seek to honor God, but outside influenced is so strong.
    I am a 63 year old Sunday School teacher, but I want to help our church get back to honoring His word. And I want that love, fellowship, mercy, grace and christian bond, rather than the, “show up, sit down, listen, learn and leave”. I don’t want to go to church and feel like I am starving.
    So Thanks Chuck! Thanks for caring and sharing.

  • Looking forward to reading the book Pastor Chuck. I always value what you say because your heart is evident.

  • norbert

    Chuck your right ,just last nihgt one of our youth stated that she feels that we no longer take the death on the cross seriously. That many of the people have lost their first love.We need to wake up.At times we are more intrested in entertaing people than building a solid foundation on the word..

  • Jack Lawson

    Dear Pastor Swindoll,
    I am a 63 year old Elder in my church of about 60 now. We used to be 120 and at one time about 150. I have watched over the years as just exactly what you describe in this book has happened. This book is long over due. I just finished it this afternoon. Now with God’s help we will Awaken the church I attend. As a side note I thank you for your teaching over the years that I attribute to my being saved. Thank you for still preaching that good old gospel message I heard so many years ago. May God continue to richly bless your ministry.

  • A.M. Finley

    I was encouraged to hear you first acknowledge and secondly, teach the fact that the One World Order is upon the Christian church and we need to wake up. Truly we have left our basic doctrinal teachings of Jesus Christ and created schisms within the body of His church. Multitudes and multitudes of our brothers and sisters are falling away to the deceptive tools of the enemy on a daily basis. Included in this deception is the Interfaith Movement which tries to bring Muslims, Christians, Jews and Catholics together to worship a god who doesn’t exist and is actually seducing the Christian people into worshiping Satan. Jesus warns us of this in the gospels when he states if it were possible they shall deceive the very elect. The Contemporary Church is just a tool Satan has used to promote worship of the beast because as you say, the focus of most services has been taken off of Jesus Christ and has been place on mankind. Thank you Chuck for all you are doing to get the message out that Jesus is the Truth, the Way and the Life. God bless you and your ministry.
    [Note to readers from Insight for Living: While Chuck always appreciates comments from readers, his book doesn’t teach that the “One World Order” is here or that the “elect are deceived” in reference to Matt. 24:24. Chuck teaches that those events will occur in the Tribulation after the Rapture.]

  • Jonathan McNair

    A very very good read. Although at times a very challenging word to me as a Pastor it was done with the usual Swindoll style, leaving no rooom for argument that was was written was exactly what needed to be said. I was confident and am more so now that the truth is under constant attack and any attempt to stand up against the tide will meet with a battle. God give us Pastors the strength to stand!!
    One thing that made the book real to me was Chuck’s admission that he at times has felt the desire to give it up, it made me feel like I was not abnormal after all…

  • Ralph Jackson

    Chuck,
    Thank you for “The Church Awakening”. I have read a number of your books and have enjoyed and benefited from them all. I especially appreciate you addressing this subject which I think is critical.
    For more than five years now my personal Bible study has focused on the topic of church. Based on my study, I have a number of concerns:
    There appears to a significant difference between the Biblical concept of church and the typical pastor’s or parishioner’s concept of church.
    There appears to be a significant difference between Biblical examples and instructions regarding assembled church practice and typical protestant assembled church practices.
    There appears to be a significant difference between Biblical church leadership principles and many of today’s church leadership/management practices.
    It appears that we are more committed to our way of doing things than we are to the Bible, or we intrepret the Bible in such a way as to approve our way of doing things.
    It also appears that those who should be aware of these issues are either unaware of the issues, or unwilling to do anything about them.
    Thank you for your book. Thank you for your work. The Lord bless you as you follow Him.