By Christian Research Network Associate Editor Erin Benziger of Do Not Be Surprised…
This is a repost of an original article on Do Not Be Surprised…

It won’t be long before James MacDonald’s newest book, Vertical Church, hits store shelves and possibly even your local church, as he takes his book to the streets with his Vertical Church Tour.

Perhaps MacDonald borrowed this idea from his friend Matt Chandler, who earlier this year boarded his own tour bus for his book, The Explicit Gospel. Hopefully Chandler offered MacDonald some bus traveling tips while the two hung out together this past week in Chicago:



Matt Chandler not only likes Harvest Bible Chapel’s (HBC) newest campus in downtown Chicago, but he also apparently likes MacDonald’s soon-to-be-released book, as he appears on the lengthy list of pastors and leaders who have endorsed it. Chandler is not the biggest name to lend his credibility to Vertical Church though. No, three other names stand out as far bigger and far more influential. Judging from this past week’s video announcements at Harvest Bible Chapel, it is these three endorsements of which MacDonald is the most proud:

Yes, we just heard it proudly announced to the congregation of HBC that Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll and Bill Hybels are “freaking out,” presumedly in a favorable fashion, over James MacDonald’s book. The Vertical Church website shares the full list of endorsers:

It seems the only name missing is that of T.D. Jakes, but perhaps MacDonald was unable to slip him a copy of Vertical Church while he was celebrating 35 years of T.D. Jakes’ ministry earlier this month.
The astute reader will notice that many of the names above are appearing together rather consistently. In fact, this pattern is visibly developing as the same names continue to appear together at each other’s various conferences. Notice that several of MacDonald’s endorsers will be speaking alongside him at the 2012 Resurgence Conference and at Perry Noble’s upcoming Newspring Leadership Conference:
This emerging pattern may cause us to wonder: Are we witnessing the development of a new, evangelical, ecumenical magisterium with the men of the Elephant Room at the helm? It may not be as far-fetched as it sounds.
Further Reading

The original appears complete with a comments section for you to join the discussion right here.

Further reading