Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church  -     By: Michael Horton
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Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church

Baker Books / 2012 / Paperback

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Product Description

Is it possible that we have left Christ out of Christianity? Is the faith and practice of American Christians today more American than Christian? These are the provocative questions Michael Horton addresses in this well-received, insightful book.

In Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church he argues that while we invoke the name of Christ, too often Christ and the Christ-centered gospel are pushed aside. The result is a message and a faith that are, in Horton's words, "trivial, sentimental, affirming, and irrelevant." This alternative "gospel" is a message of moralism, personal comfort, self-help, self-improvement, and individualistic religion. It trivializes God, making him a means to our selfish ends. Horton skillfully diagnoses the problem and points to the solution: a return to the unadulterated gospel of salvation.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 256
Vendor: Baker Books
Publication Date: 2012
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0801072212
ISBN-13: 9780801072215
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Is it possible that we have left Christ out of Christianity? Is the faith and practice of American Christians today more American than Christian? These are the provocative questions Michael Horton addresses in this well-received, insightful book. He argues that while we invoke the name of Christ, too often Christ and the Christ-centered gospel are pushed aside. The result is a message and a faith that are, in Horton's words, "trivial, sentimental, affirming, and irrelevant." This alternative "gospel" is a message of moralism, personal comfort, self-help, self-improvement, and individualistic religion. It trivializes God, making him a means to our selfish ends. Horton skillfully diagnoses the problem and points to the solution: a return to the unadulterated gospel of salvation. Now available in trade paper.

Author Bio

Michael Horton (PhD, University of Coventry and Wycliffe Hall, Oxford) is J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics at Westminster Seminary California. He hosts The White Horse Inn radio broadcast and is editor-in-chief of Modern Reformation magazine. He is the author/editor of more than twenty books, including Christless Christianity, The Gospel-Driven Life, and The Gospel Commission.

Endorsements

A more important and timely volume could not have been written.
-Thabiti M. Anyabwile,
senior pastor, First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Horton's brush is broad--expect loud lamentation from the evangelical camp--but the picture he paints is largely accurate.
-Parker T. Williamson,
editor emeritus and senior correspondent, The Presbyterian Layman

Christless Christianity establishes Michael Horton as the outstanding protagonist for classical Protestant orthodoxy.
-Episcopal Bishop C. FitzSimons Allison

Product Reviews

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  1. lou
    1 Stars Out Of 5
    Christless Christianity
    August 15, 2014
    lou
    Quality: 5
    Value: 1
    Meets Expectations: 1
    The Author confesses his carnal life, and unbelief, as he exclaims others should also remain dead to God.A modern Pharisee, he shuns the child-like faith that King Jesus encourages us to posess, as a prerequesite to being born again.Author says it is problematic to want to "experience God" and throws Henry Blackaby under the bus for doing so.Folks, this is a real dilemna, when we have the unborn shooting down the very joy of being born again.When both Father and Son make their abode in your heart, your NEW heart, you will have joy unspeakable, you will know they are there.If you don't, you havnt been born again, and must continue seeking earnestly for the gift.I know, I spoke the words as a 15 yr old young man, only to be born again 30 yrs later and after drinking and drugging my life away.First time flatline, next time was as phillip told the ethiopian-if you believe with your WHOLE heart.
  2. Andrew
    OKC, OK
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    The Gospel
    May 13, 2014
    Andrew
    OKC, OK
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: male
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Other than the Bible, I would be surprised to find a book that gives Jesus as so much glory as "Christless Christianity". I'm in my 30's, and I've been a Christian a long time, and "active" in various churches and ministries throughout my life, and as I read this book I rediscovered the true Gospel. I didn't even realize when I started the book the extent to which I've been starved for the Good News. I've been so strung out on church that makes so many demands of me - demands of my time, my money, all my talents to show (or "prove") that I'm a Christian and born-again. While the Law is good and includes good things like tithing, acts of service, etc., that is the Law and not the Gospel, and is not our lifeline. The Gospel is Christ crucified for my transgression. Jesus gets all the glory and all the credit because He did all the work. I get no credit, but I get all of His love and forgiveness. Baptism and the Lord's Supper are not opportunities where I "have to" show my dedication and commitment, but they are signs of the commitment Jesus has for me. Over the last few days since reading the book I've found myself crying off and on because I am so moved at the realization of the Good News and how much I am loved and forgiven. While not the goal when I started the book, I have also found myself praying more throughout the day, but most all I say is "Thank you" to the Father and the Son for what they have done for me. I am overwhelmed at Jesus and the Father for reaching out to me, and coming down to my level. We need to hear the Gospel all the time: Christ crucified. It's like I've never truly realized how loved and forgiven I am - and all I have to do is absolutely nothing but receive that from Him. Wow. I'm a Christian who was raised in Church, but where has the Gospel been all my life? I'm so thankful I have it now. God amazes me. The world does not need an imitation, or something "popular" - it needs the real Good News.
  3. csense
    Ohio
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    A Must Read for the Introspective Christian
    June 30, 2013
    csense
    Ohio
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    I came here looking for a study guide for Christless Christianity as I prepare to read it again, this time with a women's study group. I am short on time but would agree with the high rated reviews/comments already published. This is a book that helps to shift the Christian's paradigm back to "true north" so to speak, as opposed to so many recent popular books that are trying to reinvent or add to the central message of Christianity. Mike Horton shows how this is connected primarily to the lack of understanding and practice of the essential doctrine of rightly dividing the Law and Gospel in preaching and teaching, which manifests into other misguided practices/tendencies in the church. Highly encourage you to read this with an honest, non-defensive posture, and you will surely reap the benefit of being discipled by one of the best, (thankfully) non-rock star theologians of our time. I say this as a Lutheran who studies regularly the Bible and Christian non-fiction with evangelical women, not as a member of a reformed church. Final note, I would agree with the reviewer who said you must read carefully -- not because Horton is so hard to understand, but in his writing and speaking style you might miss when he is describing a general misconceptions or wrong teaching in the church, and think he is making a statement as to what he believes is biblically true teaching. If you take some time to listen to his online radio program, The White Horse Inn, a time or two, I think it would help immensely to hear how he teaches first, so that you will "hear" his written voice more clearly.
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