“Give God the Glory!” is a compilation of facts, statistics, definitions, stories and memoir about the way church is practiced. The book explores the purpose of the church by answering three questions: What is the church? What is my role in the local church? How do I glorify God by fulfilling my role in the local church?
Each section begins with statements about the church, some of which are very basic. In the first chapter, Johnson explains the parts of a service and reassures that putting money in an offering plate is not compulsory if you are unprepared to give. Johnson also shares stories from his own life as an example of coming to deeper understanding of the value of church and how to discover and use spiritual gifts in the church.
While Johnson offers an overall structure to the book with his three questions, within chapters there is little structure. The facts, statistics, definitions, news excerpts and stories are offered without explanation, transition or hint of how they are related to each other. Often there is a section of related Scripture passages listed repeatedly in numerous translations, without transition or explanation of the writer’s goals in citing that Scripture.
The book is also broadly ecumenical. Anecdotes of prayerful women from the Church of God in Christ are given, along with how the Anglican Church of Canada is raising money to develop a program to address the issue of Aboriginal suicide. A majority of the excerpts come from the Seventh Day Adventist magazine “Signs of the Times.”
This book may be of help and encouragement to someone who has no understanding of the role of the church. The book offers a wide perspective on church participation and the Scriptures included provide direction on the what’s and why’s of church involvement. The fact that Johnson is committed and passionate about the church is obvious and that may provide the biggest take-away for the reader.