Five years ago, I had no idea what “church planting” was. Now, I am a pastor called as part of a team to the task of planting a church! As the seed for the idea of church planting was planted in me several years ago, I took it upon myself to delve more deeply into the study of church planting as a means for gospel advancement. What did it entail? Was it the best means for church growth? Could I (and should I) be part of a church plant?

I have learned a great deal about church planting in the past five years. All of the above questions have been answered. For one thing, the Lord sovereignly directed me to a church planting church (Uptown Church) even though we chose it as our church home in Charlotte entirely for other reasons (expository preaching, worshipful music, and strong children’s ministry). Additionally, I was able to learn from other church planters in the presbytery who were eager to discuss their experiences and were happy to be a potential guide to future church planters. Also, in my final year at Reformed Theological Seminary, I had the opportunity to spend one of my electives on an independent study of church planting. My assignment was to read a ton of church planting books and write a paper. In case anyone is interested, I wanted to share my findings with you.

Here is a copy of my paper for those curious and nerdy enough: Biblical Basis for Church Planting

Here is the church planting reading list I put together from Spring 2013:

  1. Stetzer, Ed.  Planting Missional Churches.  B&H Academic, 2006, 384 pages.
  2. Stetzer, Ed.  Viral Churches: Helping Church Planters Become Movement Makers.  Jossey-Bass, 2010, 256 pages.
  3. Keller, Tim.  Center Church: Doing Balanced, Gospel-Centered Ministry in Your City.  Zondervan, 2012, 400 pages.
  4. Keller, Tim and Thompson, J. Allen.  Redeemer Church Planting Manual.  Redeemer Church Planting Center, 2002, 265 pages.
  5. Patrick, Darren.  Church Planter: The Man, the Message, the Mission.  Crossway, 2010, 240 pages.
  6. McKinley, Mike and Patrick, Darrin.  Church Planting Is for Wimps: How God Uses Messed-up People to Plant Ordinary Churches That Do Extraordinary Things.  Crossway, 2010, 128 pages.
  7. Malphurs, Aubrey.  Planting Growing Churches for the 21st Century: A Comprehensive Guide for New Churches and Those Desiring Renewal.  Baker, 2004,409 pages.
  8. Malphurs, Aubrey.  Nuts and Bolts of Church Planting, The: A Guide for Starting Any Kind of Church.  Baker, 2011, 272 pages.
  9. Searcy, Nelson and Thomas, Kerrick.  Launch: Starting a New Church from Scratch.  Regal, 2007, 224 pages.
  10. Hyde, Daniel and Lems, Shane.  Planting, Watering, Growing: Planting Confessionally Reformed Churches in the 21st Century.  Reformation Heritage, 2011, 310 pages.
  11. Beynon, Graham.  Planting for the Gospel: A hands-on guide to church planting.  Christian Focus, 2011, 128 pages.–church-planting/dp/1845506367/
  12. Schaller, Lyle.  44 Questions for Church Planters.  Abingdon Press, 1991, 196 pages.
  13. Chester, Tim and Timmis, Steve.  Total Church: A Radical Reshaping around Gospel and Community.  Crossway, 2008, 224 pages.
  14. Timmis, Steven.  Multiplying Churches: Reaching Today’s Communities through Church Planting.  Christian Focus, 2003, 128 pages.
  15. Griffith, Jim and Easum, Bill.  Ten Most Common Mistakes Made By New Church Starts.  Chalice, 2008, 128 pages.
  16. Hesselgrave, David.  Planting Churches Cross-Culturally: North America and Beyond.  Baker Academic, 2000, 348 pages.
  17. Payne, J.D.  Discovering Church Planting: An Introduction to the Whats, Whys, and Hows of Global Church Planting.  InterVarsity Press, 2012, 492 pages.
  18. Moore, Ralph.  Starting a New Church: The Church Planter’s Guide to Success.  Regal, 2002, 244 pages.
  19. Comiskey, Joel.  Planting Churches that Reproduce.  CCS Publishing, 2008, 205 pages.
  20. Shenk, David.  Creating Communities of the Kingdom: New Testament Models of Church Planting.  Herald Press, 1988, 230 pages.
  21. Mull, Marlin.  A Biblical Church Planting Manual: From the Book of Acts.  Wipf & Stock, 2004, 72 pages.
  22. Arment, Ben.  Church in the Making: What Makes or Breaks a New Church Before it Starts.  B&H, 2008, 208 pages.
  23. Murray, Stuart.  Church Planting.  Herald Press, 2001, 292 pages.
  24. Ferguson, Dave and Ferguson, Jon.  Exponential: How You and Your Friends Can Start a Missional Church Movement.  Zondervan, 2010, 240 pages.
  25. Garrison, David.  Church Planting Movements: How God is Redeeming a Lost World.   Wigtake Resources, 2003, 362 pages.
  26. Nebel, Tom and Rohrmayer, Gary.  Church Planting Landmines.  Churchsmart Resources, 2005, 140 pages.