John Stott joins together what most people tear asunder--or at least are incapable of holding together. He is a theologian of depth and breadth, yet he preaches and writes with clarity to a wide audience. He integrates social concerns into the mission of the church without ever minimizing his commitment to evangelism. Since he was ordained in 1945, he has ministered within a mainline denomination (the Church of England), while neither compromising his convictions nor diminishing his role as an evangelical thought leader. Engaged in parish ministry for 50 years at All Souls, Langham Place, in the center of London, where he now holds the title rector emeritus, his influence among evangelicals is of international proportions.
One of Stott's enduring legacies is as the key framer of the historic Lausanne Covenant (1974), which serves almost as an evangelical apostles' creed in many Third World settings. His faithful witness to the gospel in his writings and preaching has made him mentor and friend to a global community. The author of 34 books, Stott's primer on the faith, "Basic Christianity," has been translated into over 50 languages, and 22 more are in progress.
Speaking of "Authentic Christianity," an anthology of his writings from the past 50 years (forthcoming from InterVarsity), evangelical historian Mark Noll serves up this accolade: "I consider John Stott the sanest, clearest, and most solidly biblical living writer on theological topics in the English language." It is difficult to dispute this assessment.
More than his books, documents, or institutions, Stott's most important legacy to the church has been his wisdom. Thoroughly biblical, disarmingly open, shrewdly discerning, ...1