The Power of Mob Evangelism

Mark Dever and Jamie Dunlop | October 26, 2015

Editors’ note: The following is an excerpt from Mark Dever and Jamie Dunlop’s outstanding book The Compelling Community: Where God's Power Makes a Church Attractive (Crossway, 2015) [20 quotes | review].

My friend Walter was an addict. Here’s how The Washington Post told his story:

He used crystal methamphetamine, and then he discovered crack cocaine. He was homeless for a time, and then he was a thief. He lived in doubt and fear, in paranoia and darkness, until one morning in 2010, when he went for a run.

Barrera believes it was that experience, when he needed a break after only one block, that he replaced drugs with running. Three years later, its hold is as strong as any narcotic. Instead of waking each morning in search of the next high, he tried going a little farther than the previous day, a few more seconds without stopping. After a few weeks, he ran a 5K, and the feeling afterward was familiar.

“Everything just feels perfect, feels right,” he says.

Soon he was running marathons, but eventually that wasn’t enough. Barrera ran a 50-mile race last June, and three months from now—if the rain holds off often enough, if his…

To read the rest of this article, visit