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City of God, City of Satan: A Biblical Theology of the Urban Church.

To write a biblical urban theology is a formidable challenge for any author. Robert Linthicum has the background of a city pastor, theologian, and urban community organizer. His current position as director of the office of Urban Advance for World Vision International exposes him to current city issues worldwide. He has put this experience together in a book that combines scriptural foundations, theological and sociological analysis, and practical insights about the mission of the church in cities.

In part 1, the city is described as the battleground between hostile forces--between Yahweh and Baal in the Old Testament and between God and Satan in the New. God is revealed as having compassion for the city, and his intention is to recreate the city, with its systems and inhabitants, into the kingdom of God.

Part 2 addresses the role of the church as the community that exposes the lies that the systems tell to keep the city in bondage and its role as the advocate of the kingdom of God. To this end the church witnesses in its prayer, presence, proclamation, and practice, as it works for the empowerment of the poor, the liberation of the powerful from their own kind of bondage, and the reformulation of the city into a godly community.

Urban workers need supernatural power to keep going and to remain optimistic, creative, and even "full of humor." This emphasis appears in part 3, which discusses the spiritual disciplines required for ministry in cities, the life in community, and maintenance of the heavenly vision.

Roger S. Greenway is Professor of World Missiology at Calvin Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan. His ministry background includes twenty-five years of mission activity, from urban church-planter and pastor to mission director, teacher, and writer.
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Author:Greenway, Roger S.
Publication:International Bulletin of Missionary Research
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Jan 1, 1993
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