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Elmer L. Towns

Sep 24, 2014

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Dr. Elmer Towns is a college and seminary professor, an author of popular and scholarly works (the editor of two encyclopedias), a popular seminar lecturer, and dedicated worker in Sunday school. He is the co-founder of Liberty University along with his colleague Jerry Falwell. Elmer has published over 100 books listed in the Library of Congress, 7 listed in the Christian Booksellers Best Selling List; several becoming accepted as college textbooks.

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Dr. Elmer Towns is author to numerous popular and scholarly works (the editor of two encyclopedias), an educator, a popular seminar lecturer, and dedicated worker in Sunday school. He has developed over 20 resource packets for leadership education.

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Elmer began teaching at Midwest Bible College, St. Louis, Missouri, for three years before becoming President of Winnipeg Bible College for five years, leading it to receive American Accreditation and Provincial authority to offer degrees (1960-1965). He taught at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, in greater Chicago, Illinois, in the field of Religious Education and Evangelism (1965-1971).

He is co-founder of Liberty University, with Jerry Falwell, in 1971, and was the only full-time teacher in the first year of Liberty’s existence. Today, the University has over 11,400 students on campus with 39,000 in the Distance Learning Program (now Liberty University Online), and he is the Dean of the School of Religion.

Dr. Towns has given theological lectures and taught intensive seminars at over 50 theological seminaries in America and abroad. He holds visiting professorship rank in five seminaries. He has written over 2,000 reference and/or popular articles and received six honorary doctoral degrees. Four doctoral dissertations have analyzed his contribution to religious education and evangelism.

His personal education includes a B.S. from Northwestern College in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a M.A. from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, a Th.M. from Dallas Theological Seminary also in Dallas, a MRE from Garrett Theological Seminary in Evanston, Illinois, and a D.Min. from Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, California.

Gary McIntosh

Oct 15, 2014

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Gary L. McIntosh is President of the Church Growth Network and Professor of Christian Ministry and Leadership at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. He has amassed over 27 years of consulting experience with more then 1,000 churches diagnosed and 87 different denominations served in that time. He is an author of 18 books on church growth and has written 6 manuals on pastoral ministry. Additionally, he is the editor of Growth Points newsletter and a pastor for over 15 years. Gary is listed in the “Who’s Who” in Church Growth and “Who’s Who” Among America’s Teachers. He is the recipient of the Donald A. McGavran award from the American Society for Church Growth, the Distinguished Alumni award from Colorado Christian University, The Donald A. McGavran award from Fuller School of Intercultural Studies, and the Robert B. Fisher award for Faculty Excellence at Biola University.

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GARY MCINTOSH ONLINE

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Gary L. McIntosh was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA. He developed a keen interest in music beginning in third grade, and participated in vocal music throughout his elementary, junior, and senior high school years. He was elected as president of his high school acappella choir and received the senior award for excellence in vocal music in 1965.

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In 1970 Gary graduated from Rockmont College (now Colorado Christian University) with a B.A. in Biblical Studies. Throughout his studies he was actively involved in worship and youth ministry, but pursued a career in business upon graduation. While managing a business in Denver, Colorado, Gary sensed God’s call to pastoral ministry and attended Western Conservative Baptist Seminary (Portland, OR), graduating in 1975 with a M.Div. in Pastoral Studies.

After relocating to Southern California to pastor a Conservative Baptist Church, Gary entered Fuller Theological Seminary and graduated with a D.Min. in Church Growth Studies in 1982. Building on his interest in church growth, he served as Vice President of Consulting Services for Win Arn’s influential Institute for American Church Growth from 1983 to 1986. In 1986 he accepted an opportunity to teach at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University. In 2000 Gary, again entered Fuller Theological Seminary and graduated in 2005 with a Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies.

Gary is currently Professor of Christian Ministry and Leadership at Talbot School of Theology, Biola University, where he teaches courses in the field of Pastoral Theology. The author of eighteen books and numerous articles, he has received the Faculty Excellence Award from Biola University, the Donald A. McGavran award from the American Society for Church Growth, the Distinguished Alumni Award from Colorado Christian University, and the Donald A. McGavran award from the School of Intercultural Studies, Fuller Theological Seminary. Gary also served as President of the American Society for Church Growth in 1995 and 1996.

Dr. Gary L. McIntosh, has over 27 years of experience in the field of church growth consultation, coaching of church leaders, and workshop presentations. As President of the McIntosh Church Growth Network, Gary has analyzed over 1,000 churches, representing some 87 denominations throughout the United States, Canada and Southeast Asia. His articles have appeared in Global Church Growth, New Results, the Win Arn Growth Report, Leadership, Church Growth America, Growing Churches, and numerous denominational publications.

Gary is editor of the Growth Points newsletter and to date, he has published eighteen books, six manuals, and over one hundred articles on church growth, evangelism, leadership, and pastoral ministry. His books include: Finding Them; Keeping Them (1992), The Issachar Factor (1994), Three Generations (1995), The Exodus Principle (1995), Make Room for the Boom or Bust (1997), Creating Community (1997), Overcoming the Dark Side of Leadership (1998), One Church, Four Generations (2002) and Biblical Church Growth (2003). In addition, he has authored or co-authored six manuals on pastoral ministry, among which are How To Develop A Pastoral Compensation Plan (1991), How To Start Small Groups (1992) and How To Develop A Policy Manual (1993).

Dr. McIntosh was the 1995 and 1996 President of the American Society of Church Growth (now the Great Commission Research Network), a national society which networks professors, denominational leaders, and pastors interested in church growth. As a national seminar leader, Gary conducts approximately 20 workshops and seminars yearly on various church growth topics such as outreach, assimilation, long-range planning, church advertising, and worship.

Selected Media Appearances

T.V.
“Let’s Get America Back To God,” Concord, California
“You Need To Know,” Chicago, Illinois
“Among Friends,” Chicago, Illinois

Radio
“Round the Country,” Atlanta, Georgia
“On the Air,” Denver, Colorado
“The Emmett McAuliffe Show,” St. Louis, Missouri
“The Bright Side,” Grand Rapids, Michigan
“Morning Watch,” St. Paul, Minnesota
“Public Affairs,” Fresno, California

Dr. McIntosh and his wife Carol reside in Temecula, CA and have two grown children and six grandchildren.

Larry Gilbert

Oct 14, 2014

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Larry Gilbert is the founder of the Church Growth Institute through which he has published a number of books on team ministry, evangelism and strategy. He also speaks on spiritual gifts and evangelism. To date, his best-selling Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Inventory has helped almost five million people discover their dominant spiritual gifts. He and his wife, Mary Lou, live in Elkton, Maryland.

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As a business owner and active layperson in Cecil County, Maryland, Larry Gilbert decided to form a Christian businessmen’s organization. In the businessmen’s meetings, which included pastors, he heard of problems in boosting church membership, motivating congregations to get involved, and helping laypeople develop into spiritual mature Christians. The pastors’ frustration and quest for answers greatly concerned Gilbert. He was motivated to help struggling pastors.

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Gilbert founded Steps in Living Ministries in 1978 as a means to provide resources that would help pastors and churches. He sold his successful sign business in Maryland and moved to Lynchburg, Virginia where he enrolled in Liberty University. There he met Elmer Towns. With Gilbert’s business knowledge and experience and Dr. Towns’ teaching ability and church growth expertise, the two of them worked together to launch the Church Growth Institute in 1984, a new division of Steps in Living Ministries. Steps in Living Ministries changed its name to Ephesians Four Ministries, based on Ephesians 4:11-12, “for the equipping of the saints”.

The nonprofit organization was located in Forest, Virginia. It would continue to develop and publish printed resources and would also hold seminars for church leaders across the nation. Dr. Towns authored several popular resources and was the foremost seminar speaker for the organization in the early years. Dr. Gilbert oversaw the resource development and administrative duties as he also researched and authored materials and served as a seminar speaker. While Dr. Towns still contributes new resources on occasion, he does not have an active role in the organization.

In 1998, Church Growth Seminars left the organization and became a separate entity, but has since ceased. Church Growth Institute remained the publishing arm of Ephesians Four Ministries and is still in business and ministry after 36 years.

In 2008, Ephesians Four Ministries entered the world of online resources with a free online Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Analysis at www.TeamMinistry.com based on the best-selling Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Inventory, by Larry Gilbert, which over 5 million people have taken. This expanded to the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Database for groups (available by subscription), downloadable books for purchase, web store (at www.ChurchGrowth.org), and the free daily e-devotional, Prime Time With God. Through the years, our most popular resources have been Friend Day (evangelistic attendance campaign), the Team Ministry series (including Team Ministry, Team Evangelism, Team Mate and others), and the ever-expanding line of “discovery” tools such as the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Inventory, Spiritual Growth Survey, Evaluating Your Friendship Skills, Marriage Communication Assessment, Leadership/Management Inventory, etc.

In 2014, Church Growth Institute, changed it’s name to ChurchGrowth.org and continues to expand and grow in serving the Body of Christ with gospel resources.
Whether you are a pastor, church staff member, counselor, teacher, or lay person, ChurchGrowth.org offers resources to meet a need in your life and ministry. Through online media such as the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Analysis, Team Ministry Personal Ministry Finder, Serving God Where You Fit Best evaluation, Team Ministry downloadable products, and the free PRIME TIME WITH GOD daily e-devotional, you will find resources to help you understand yourself better and learn more about how and where God has equipped you for service.

Team Ministry

Jul 29, 2014

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Team Ministry

Team-MinistryHow Spiritual Gifts Can Unleash the Power of Everybody
A Team Ministry Handbook for Helping Pastors and Churches Focus on Spiritual Gifts in 2015
In this newly edited and revised book for pastors and group leaders, we’ve taken the best Team Ministry resources and combined them into a single volume. This powerful and practical handbook includes:
• Tools to help pastors and church leaders activate members’ gifts
• Methods for developing lay volunteers and leaders in your church
• Ways to use your members’ spiritual gifts to help your church grow
• Questions and tools for teaching the nine team gifts in a small group or Sunday school setting.

Team Ministry: How Spiritual Gifts Can Unleash the Power of Everybody is the perfect companion for pastors and ministry leaders who want to take their churches to new heights for God’s Kingdom.
AUDIENCE: Pastors, ministry and lay leaders in the church—those looking to discover and activate spiritual gifts in their churches and organizations.

ENDORSEMENTS:
• Elmer Towns, D.Min, speaker, best-selling author, and co-founder of Liberty University
• Richard Lee, PhD, speaker, best-selling author, and president of There’s Hope America
• Mike Broyles, executive director, Awana Lifeline

MARKETING:
• Aggressive digital marketing campaign encouraging pastors and church leaders to focus on spiritual gifts in 2015.
• Pastors and caring professionals online advertising campaign to build grass roots momentum.
• Major social media campaign including launch team.

SELLING POINTS:
• An all-in-one leader’s handbook for implementing the world’s best-selling spiritual gifts survey in your church
• Excellent teaching companion for the spiritual gifts inventory used by more than 5 million people
• Perfect for use in a variety of church settings—leadership development, small group teaching, etc.
• Strategic campaign/program to increase volunteerism in the local church

ISBN: 978-1-57052-290-1
PRICE: $14.99
PAGES: 224 pages
FORMAT: 6” x 9”, Quality Trade Paperback
SUBJECT: Christian Life/Spiritual Growth (REL 012120)
SHIP DATE: DECEMBER 15, 2014
RELEASE DATE: JANUARY 1, 2015

DR. LARRY GILBERT has researched, written and taught about spiritual gifts for over 40 years. As the founder of Church Growth Institute and Ephesians Four Ministries, Dr. Gilbert has worked with tens of thousands of churches and helped over five million people to discover their unique God-given gifts. Larry and his wife, Mary Lou, live in Elkton, Maryland.

Your Gifts | Survey

Jul 29, 2014

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YOUR GIFTS | Survey

Your-Gifts-SurveyThe Easy-to-Use, Self-Guided Spiritual Gifts Survey

The #1-Selling Spiritual Gifts Inventory—Now Updated
Did you know you were born with unique spiritual gifts? Even more, God wants to unlock those gifts so you can grow and become the person you were meant to be! Your Gifts will guide you through a fun, 20-minute survey to help you discover your exact gifts, and how you can use them to fulfill His plans for your life. More than five million people around the world have discovered their true spiritual gifts through taking the Your Gifts survey, enabling and equipping them to serve with effectiveness and fulfillment at home, work, and in their churches.  What better time than now to understand how God desires to release you with passion and purpose as you begin to put these gifts into practice!

Your Gifts covers nine “team” gifts used in daily life and ministry:

  • Administration – organizing, administering, promoting, leading
  • Evangelism – leading others to the saving knowledge of Christ
  • Exhortation – motivating others to action, application and purpose
  • Giving – releasing material resources to further the work of the Church
  • Mercy-Showing – Identifying with and comforting those in need
  • Pastoring/Shepherding – overseeing, training, feeding, coaching/leading
  • Prophecy – the capacity and desire to serve God by proclaiming His truth
  • Serving – providing practical help both physically and spiritually
  • Teaching – making clear the truth of God’s Word with simplicity & accuracy

Your Gifts—formerly known as the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts 
Inventory—includes: questionnaire; two-part, self-scoring answer sheet; gift summaries; instructions.

AUDIENCE: Adults ages 18 and up – those looking to discover and activate their spiritual gifts

ENDORSEMENTS:
• Elmer Towns, D.Min, speaker, best-selling author, and co-founder of Liberty University
• Richard Lee, PhD, speaker, best-selling author, and president of There’s Hope America
• Mike Broyles, executive director, Awana Lifeline

MARKETING:
• Aggressive digital marketing campaign encouraging pastors and church leaders to focus on spiritual gifts in 2015.
• Pastors and caring professionals online advertising campaign to build grass roots momentum.
• Major social media campaign including launch team.

SELLING POINTS:
• The world’s best-selling spiritual gifts survey
• Revised and updated for a new generation
• Used by more than 5 million people—trusted, proven, and effective
• Perfect for individuals, groups, churches, and organizations
• Strategic campaign/program to increase volunteerism in churches

ISBN: 978-1-57052-286-4
PRICE: $3.99
PAGES: 16 pages
FORMAT: 8.5” x 11”, Staple-bound Workbook
SUBJECT: Christian Life/Spiritual Growth (REL 012120)
SHIP DATE: DECEMBER 15, 2014
RELEASE DATE: JANUARY 1, 2015
Also Available in Spanish – ISBN: 978-1-57052-009-9

DR. LARRY GILBERT has researched, written and taught about spiritual gifts for over 40 years. As the founder of Church Growth Institute and Ephesians Four Ministries, Dr. Gilbert has worked with tens of thousands of churches and helped over five million people to discover their unique God-given gifts. Larry and his wife, Mary Lou, live in Elkton, Maryland.

Your Gifts TradeBook

Jul 29, 2014

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YOUR GIFTS | TradeBook

Your-Gifts
Discover God’s Unique Design for You

Tools for Unleashing the Power of Your Spiritual Gifts
If you are one of the 5 million users of the Your Gifts Spiritual Gifts Survey, this book was developed specifically for you! An indispensible companion to the Survey, Your Gifts: Discover God’s Unique Design for You takes an in-depth look at each of the nine spiritual gifts, and provides specific examples of people in the Bible who match each respective gift. Perfect for use in small groups, this dynamic new book reveals steps to nurture and activate your gift in practical ways. As well, you will learn about the potential roadblocks that can inhibit your gift, as well as pitfalls to avoid going forward.
God created you with purpose and passion—learn how you can take the gifts He’s given you and use them to advance His Kingdom in ways you never imagined. It’s time to go deeper—it’s time to discover God’s unique design for you, and become the person He created you to be.
Each book includes a copy of Your Gifts: The Easy-to-Use, Self-
Guided Spiritual Gifts Survey so readers can discover their specific gifts as they learn how to use them more effectively.
AUDIENCE: Individuals as well as small groups – those looking to discover and activate their spiritual gifts.

ENDORSEMENTS:
• Elmer Towns, D.Min, speaker, best-selling author, and co-founder of Liberty University
• Richard Lee, PhD, speaker, best-selling author, and president of There’s Hope America
• Mike Broyles, executive director, Awana Lifeline

MARKETING:
• Aggressive digital marketing campaign encouraging pastors and church leaders to focus on spiritual gifts in 2015.
• Pastors and caring professionals online advertising campaign to build grass roots momentum.
• Major social media campaign including launch team.

SELLING POINTS:
• Based on the world’s best-selling spiritual gifts survey
• Used by more than 5 million people—trusted, proven, and effective
• Perfect for individuals, groups, churches, and organizations
• Strategic campaign/program to increase volunteerism in the local church

ISBN: 978-1-57052-289-5
PRICE: $9.99
PAGES: 160 pages
FORMAT: 6” x 9”, Quality Trade Paperback
SUBJECT: Christian Life/Spiritual Growth (REL 012120)
SHIP DATE: DECEMBER 15, 2014
RELEASE DATE: JANUARY 1, 2015

DR. LARRY GILBERT has researched, written and taught about spiritual gifts for over 40 years. As the founder of Church Growth Institute and Ephesians Four Ministries, Dr. Gilbert has worked with tens of thousands of churches and helped over five million people to discover their unique God-given gifts. Larry and his wife, Mary Lou, live in Elkton, Maryland.

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Jul 15, 2014

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History of ChurchGrowth.org

Dr. Larry Gilbert | Church Growth InstituteAs a business owner and active layperson in Cecil County, Maryland, Larry Gilbert decided to form a Christian businessmen’s organization. In the businessmen’s meetings, which included pastors, he heard of problems in boosting church membership, motivating congregations to get involved, and helping laypeople develop into spiritual mature Christians. The pastors’ frustration and quest for answers greatly concerned Gilbert. He was motivated to help struggling pastors.

Gilbert founded Steps in Living Ministries in 1978 as a means to provide resources that would help pastors and churches. He sold his successful sign business in Maryland and moved to Lynchburg, Virginia where he enrolled in Liberty University. There he met Elmer Towns. With Gilbert’s business knowledge and experience and Dr. Towns’ teaching ability and church growth expertise, the two of them worked together to launch the Church Growth Institute in 1984, a new division of Steps in Living Ministries. Steps in Living Ministries changed its name to Ephesians Four Ministries, based on Ephesians 4:11-12, “for the equipping of the saints”.

The nonprofit organization was located in Forest, Virginia. It would continue to develop and publish printed resources and would also hold seminars for church leaders across the nation. Dr. Towns authored several popular resources and was the foremost seminar speaker for the organization in the early years. Dr. Gilbert oversaw the resource development and administrative duties as he also researched and authored materials and served as a seminar speaker. While Dr. Towns still contributes new resources on occasion, he does not have an active role in the organization.

In 1998, Church Growth Seminars left the organization and became a separate entity, but has since ceased CGILogo-newoperation. Church Growth Institute remained the publishing arm of Ephesians Four Ministries and is still in business and ministry after 36 years.

In 2008, Ephesians Four Ministries entered the world of online resources with a free online Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Analysis at www.TeamMinistry.com based on the best-selling Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Inventory, by Larry Gilbert, which over 5 million people have taken. This expanded to the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Database for groups (available by subscription), downloadable books for purchase, web store (at www.ChurchGrowth.org), and the free daily e-devotional, Prime Time With God. Through the years, our most popular resources have been Friend Day (evangelistic attendance campaign), the Team Ministry series (including Team Ministry, Team Evangelism, Team Mate and others), and the ever-expanding line of “discovery” tools such as the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Inventory, Spiritual Growth Survey, Evaluating Your Friendship Skills, Marriage Communication Assessment, Leadership/Management Inventory, etc.

In 2014, Church Growth Institute, changed it’s name to ChurchGrowth.org and continues to expand and grow in serving the Body of Christ with gospel resources.

Whether you are a pastor, church staff member, counselor, teacher, or lay person, ChurchGrowth.org offers resources to meet a need in your life and ministry. Through online media such as the Team Ministry Spiritual Gifts Analysis, Team Ministry Personal Ministry Finder, Serving God Where You Fit Best evaluation, Team Ministry downloadable products, and the free PRIME TIME WITH GOD daily e-devotional, you will find resources to help you understand yourself better and learn more about how and where God has equipped you for service.