8 Hallmarks Of Attractional And Gospel-Centered Churches

Essential defining characteristics of the attractional church model and some hallmarks of gospel-centered churches

Hallmarks of gospel-centered churches:Meaningful membership encompassing whole-life discipleship, pastoral care, and church discipline. Emphasis on members as missionaries & emphasizing “go and tell” over “come and see.” A total trust in the gospel to be the power of transformation that no amount of inspiration can be. Regular commitment to the Lord’s Supper. Reliance on robustness of the gospel to apply to the believer, justification & sanctification….


Went on a bit of a Twitter run yesterday with some thoughts on the essential defining characteristics of the church model I call attractional, followed by some constructive alternative hallmarks of gospel-centered churches. Hopefully they will bring more clarity to thinking through the relevant issues in evangelical ecclesiology. These are important times to get this sorted.

Unfortunate hallmarks of the attractional church:

1) Sermons driven by what Christian Smith calls “moralistic therapeutic deism”

2) Functional ideology of pragmatism. (Not “what’s biblical?” but “what works?”)

3) Truncating of the gospel or relegation of the gospel to background/afterthought….

Hallmarks of gospel-centered churches:

1) Trust not just in authority of Scripture but sufficiency of Scripture

2) Sermons that emphasize “It is finished!” over “Get to work!”. Jesus is the star, not a bit player….

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