Saving Jesus From The Church: How to Stop Worshipping Christ and Start Following Jesus
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Number of Pages: 256
Publication Date: 2009
|Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)|
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Countless thoughtful people are now so disgusted with the marriage of bad theology and hypocritical behavior by the church that a new Reformation is required in which the purpose of religion itself is reimagined.
Meyers takes the best of biblical scholarship and recasts these core Christian concepts to exhort the church to pursue an alternative vision of the Christian life:
- Jesus as Teacher, not Savior
- Christianity as Compassion, not Condemnation
- Prosperity as Dangerous, not Divine
- Discipleship as Obedience, not Control
- Religion as Relationship, not Righteousness
This is not a call to the church to move to the far left or to try something brand new. Rather, it is the recovery of something very old. Saving Jesus from the Church shows us what it means to be a Christian and how to follow Jesus' teachings today.
For over twenty years, Robin Meyers has been pastor of Mayflower Congregational, an "unapologetically Christian, unapologetically liberal" church. He is a professor in the philosophy department at Oklahoma City University, a syndicated columnist, and an award-winning commentator for National Public Radio. Meyers has appeared on Dateline NBC, the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and ABC World News, and writes regularly for The Christian Century.
“With crisply prophetic joy, Meyers calls seekers and believers alike to leave belief about God behind in favor of becoming imitators of Jesus. We can save Jesus from the church, and in doing so, recreate faith communities freed from hypocrisy and filled with hope.”
“Every once in a while, a book comes along that changes everything. This is the book. It is scholarly, pastoral, prophetic, and eloquent--all in equal measure. Robin Meyers has spoken truth to power, and the church he loves will never be the same.”
“The time is right for this book and this book is right for the time.”
“In a progressive rather than negatively critical mode, in strong contrast to much of Far Right Protestantism, pastor/NPR commentator Meyers (philosophy, Oklahoma City Univ.) suggests with typical elegance that a recovery of true Christianity emphasizes compassion over condemnation, blessing over sin, and equity over individual prosperity. Highly recommended.”
“Meyers’ insightful and provocative critique of contemporary Christianity will stimulate energetic theologizing: deconstruction, reconstruction, or impassioned defense of the inherited tradition. Thank you, Robin, for convening this urgently needed conversation.”
“A perceptive book . . . Not many authors can present such progressive ideas and still come across as reasonable and loving. Meyers masters such a task.”
LifeVerseGender: male2 Stars Out Of 5January 7, 2013LifeVerseGender: maleQuality: 2Value: 1Meets Expectations: 2Does it seem possible that all the Christians who lived before the 21st century somehow missed what God intended to say? This book definitely takes the position that we have all had it wrong, so the author is going to enlighten us about the "real" Jesus.
Having worked for one of the mainline (liberal) denominations, I am familiar with their approach to the Bible and Christianity: the church exists to promote whatever is on the liberal social agenda at the moment, and presently that is same-sex marriage, feminism, the environment, open borders, etc. The supreme virtue is tolerance, they say, but they don't practice it themselves, as seen in their contempt for all who disagree with them. "Following Jesus" means recycling, eliminating "sexist" language from worship services, marching in gay pride parades, voting Democratic, and frequently using words like "compassion" and "inclusive." You would not guess from reading books like these that Jesus had a very strict sexual ethic, nor that the famous story of the woman about to be stoned for adultery ends with Jesus telling her "Go and sin no more."
The author is open about taking on the Religious Right, but she doesn't get her facts right. She claims young Christians are taught to "love Jesus by hating Darwin and homosexuals." I've been in many conservative churches, and not one teaches people to hate Darwin and homosexuals. That happens inside a liberal's head, not in real life. (Liberals have a difficult time grasping the simple "love the sinner, hate the sin" principle.) Elsewhere in the book she claims that Christians regard homosexuals as "freaks of nature"â€”again, a figment of the liberal mind. In my experience, conservative Christians seldom discuss homosexuality, though books like this would have you believe it is an obsession.
Some of her criticisms of Christian conservatives are amusing. She refers to Mel Gibson's Passion of the Christ as "a frightfully successful movie in which the One who tortures is God." Memo to the author: crucifixion was truly horrible, which the movie conveyed very well, and Christian theology has never regarded God as "torturing his Son." Elsewhere in the book she sneers at churches that are "metal auditoriums," a slap at the modern megachurches which are often filled to capacity. I have some issues with those churches myself, but I think this author is simply guilty of envyâ€”a pastor in a dying denomination peeved that other churches are growing.
Several times in the book the author recounts some event or practice in conservative churches and follows up with "if these are Christians, I must not be one."
Shalome builderLittle Rock, ARAge: 35-44Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5One of the best books on Christianity I've readMay 10, 2012Shalome builderLittle Rock, ARAge: 35-44Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5Robin Meyers, nails it every time with a much needed message for the modern fundamentalist. He shows us how to practice the religion of Jesus not the one we have built about Jesus.
chrisAge: 25-34Gender: male1 Stars Out Of 5March 22, 2011chrisAge: 25-34Gender: maleIn his prologue the author states "I have never believed in the virgin birth as a biological fact." Just letting the potential reader what he or she is getting into!
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