Does 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."