(EPConnection news release). What can we do to foster unity and deeper community in a world where so many relationships are fractured and fractious? Luder Whitlock, minister at-large for First Presbyterian Church of Orlando and a member of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) National Leadership Team, addresses this question in Divided We Fall: Overcoming a History of Christian Disunity. The book was released in May by P&R Publishing and available from a variety of booksellers.
In the book, Whitlock explores God’s desire for unity in the church, overviews the history of global Christianity with an eye on its schisms and agreements, and points readers toward the necessity of God-honoring fellowship. In the closing chapters, he tackles some challenges and concerns, as well as provides practical steps for increasing trust and developing understanding—particularly within the church.
Among the many Christian leaders writing endorsements of the book are Jeff Jeremiah, Leith Anderson, Tim Keller, Mark Noll, and Carmen Fowler LaBerge.
“(Whitlock) makes a simple argument,” said Jeremiah, EPC Stated Clerk, “that it’s time for evangelicals Christians to focus more closely on what they hold in common, especially in the face of increasing cultural opposition to the gospel.”
“Divided We Fall explains how we got to where we are—with an amazing mix of tears, anger, and hope,” said Anderson, President of the National Association of Evangelicals.
“At a time when Christian leaders are almost obsessed about the culture,” said Keller, Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York, “this book rightly argues that we will shape the broader society only to the degree that we make the Christian church what it should be.”
“Biblically rooted, historically informed, and pastorally helpful, this book gracefully fulfills its purpose of strengthening unity and community in Christ’s church,” said Noll, Research Professor of History for Regent University in Vancouver, British Columbia, and plenary speaker for the third annual Leadership Institute at the 37th General Assembly in June.
LaBerge, President of the Presbyterian Lay Committee, said the book is “a must-read for all those interested in the church’s bearing a unified witness to the world.”
Others endorsing the book include David Swanson, Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Orlando, and Don Sweeting, President of Colorado Christian University.
Whitlock served as president of Reformed Theological Seminary from 1978-2001, and currently is executive director of the CNL Charitable Foundation and the JMS Foundation. He also served as Executive Director of The New Geneva Study Bible and a major revision, published as The Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible. He and his wife, Mary Lou, have three children and eleven grandchildren.