Book Review: Why Men Hate Going to Church by David Murrow

Weak Theologically, Decent Practically

From the time I started this book, until the time I finished it – I read and reviewed 25 other books. I just couldn’t get into it at all. I think it’s because though the subject is important – Why do more women than men go and participate in church? I think the theological underpinnings of the book were so weak that the book just couldn’t hold my interest. I think he actually totally missed the point of why men don’t go to church, and it’s the same reason why women, or even teenagers don’t go to church – the Bible calls it “idolatry.”

In this book the author spends most of the time giving statistics, talking about the feminization of the church, and issues related to gender, masculinity, and men’s needs.

The book is one that I think most Christians or marketers could have written, and Murrow has capitalized on it. However, I don’t think that he has really given foundational solutions. The solution isn’t just about growing churches by giving men what they want; it’s focusing on the gospel and loving men by applying the gospel to men’s idolatries – what they really need. It’s offering what Jesus offered men and women in the New Testament – the abundant life in Him that’s better than anything the world has to offer. In other words, what difference does it make if you have a lot of men coming to church, but they aren’t being told to repent and have faith in Christ – change from the inside out. You don’t get men into church by feeding their idolatries, but by giving them the gospel and showing how Jesus is better than their idolatries.

On a positive note I do think Murrow gives some good practical suggestions and statistics to spark discussion among pastors or church staffs that are seeking to be effective in their outreach and discipleship of men. Over this book I would recommend the following books for men and reaching men: “Disciplines of a Godly Man” by R. Kent Hughes, “Tender Warrior” by Stu Weber, “No Man Left Behind” and “The Man in the Mirror” by Patrick Morley (anything by Morley on or for Men), “The Masculine Mandate” by Richard D. Phillips, or “Men of God” edited by Trevor Archer and Tim Thornborough.

I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I am under no compulsion to write a positive or negative review of this book. The opinions expressed are exclusively my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.


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