Top recommendations on missiology and church planting

Following my recommendations for books on evangelism, I was asked for my top three books on missiology and church planting. It’s a tough one as it often depends what the issue is. I’ve not quite managed to keep it to three, but here are some thoughts …

[All the links are to my US store. UK readers can find the books linked in my UK store.]


1. Part one of The Missionary Movement in Christian History by Andrew Walls is essential reading.

2. Transforming Mission by David Bosch is the classic text book.

3. I would also recommend The Gospel in a Pluralist Society by Lesslie Newbigin.

4. Although nearly 100 years old, Roland Allen’s Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours? still feels ahead of its time! Some recent reading I’ve done on church planting movement only confirms this.

5. Perhaps I can also add my own Good News to the Poor.

Church planting

1. I would of course start with Total Church by Steve Timmis and me.

2.  The Forgotten Ways by Alan Hirsch is very stimulating as his book with Michael Frost, The Shaping of Things To Come.

3. One of the books that most influenced me was Going to the Church in the First Century, Robert Banks’ brief fictional account (albeit based on his through NT scholarship) of, well, going to church in the first century.

4. Also worth reading, and available free online, is a summary of David Garrison’swork of church planting movements.

8 thoughts on “Top recommendations on missiology and church planting

  1. Pingback: Tim Chester’s top picks on evangelism, church planting and missiology « God is Better than All

  2. Roland Allen’s Missionary Methods: St. Paul’s or Ours? is probably the most influential book I’ve ever read outside of the bible. His critique is good, but even better is his solution (which is rare to find that way around in books). If you replace the word heathen with the word young person and the word missionary with youth work, it’s the most relevant criticism of youth work ever.

  3. Whoops, I forgot another comment. Colin, I’ve read Schnabal on Paul. I found it a good overview of the Epistles, but I’d suggest that it is a poor missiology book. Because he only examines Paul, he does not present the full Biblical picture of mission. I would suggest reading it alongside Chris Wright’s Mission of God to get a more complete picture of God’s mission.

  4. Hey Tim – good to see Good News to the Poor down on the list. Many would overlook if not totally dismiss this vital angle of mission. Rhys

  5. My top five on Mission would be

    1.Transforming Mission- Bosch
    2.Making Christ known – Stott
    3.The Mission of God- Chris Wright
    4.Evangelical Dictionary on World Mission – Moreau
    5.The General next to God -Richard Collier

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