Radical: Are you reading this book?

If you are a follower of Jesus, I think you should read this book: Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream.




It's $5.51 at Amazon. Buy it. Read it.

I'm about halfway through it. Author David Platt is so, so right on and what he writes about is what I need to hear and I truly think: every Christian that lives in America needs to hear.

I even broke my rule of not marking up my books. I've underlined and starred and arrowed all over this excerpt from Chapter 1:

Let's put ourselves in the shoes of these eager followers of Jesus in the first century. What if I were the potential disciple being told to drop my nets? What if you were the man whom Jesus told to not even say good-bye to his family? What if we were told to hate our families and give up everything we had to follow Jesus?

This is where we come face to face with a dangerous reality. We do have to give up everything we have to follow Jesus. We do have to love him in a way that makes our closest relationships in this world look like hate. And it is entirely possible that he will tell us to sell everything we have and give it to the poor.

But we don't want to believe it. We are afraid of what it might mean for our lives. So we rationalize these passages away. "Jesus wouldn't really tell us not to bury our father or say good-bye to our family. Jesus didn't literally mean to sell all we have and give it to the poor. What Jesus really meant was..."

And this is where we need to pause. Because we are starting to redefine Christianity. We are giving in to the dangerous temptation to take the Jesus of the Bible and twist him into a version of Jesus we are more comfortable with.

A nice, middle-class, American Jesus. A Jesus who doesn't mind materialism and who would never call us to give away everything we have. A Jesus who would not expect us to forsake our closest relationships so that he receives all our affection. A Jesus who is fine with nominal devotion that does not infringe upon our comforts, because, after all, he loves us just the way we are. A Jesus who wants us to be balanced, who wants us to avoid dangerous extremes, and who, for that matter, wants us to avoid danger altogether. A Jesus who brings us comfort and prosperity as we live out our Christian spin on the American dream.

But do you and I realize what we are doing at this point? We are molding Jesus into our image. He is beginning to look a lot like us, because, after all, that is whom we are most comfortable with. And the danger now is that when we gather in our church buildings to sing and lift up our hands in worship, we may not actually be worshiping the Jesus of the Bible. Instead we may be worshiping ourselves.
Is anyone else sick of the rationalization of Scripture and the comfy Christian life? I sure am.

13 comments:

  1. You little fireball.

    Love you!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I can't see the title of the book...hmmm...I'll come back when it's fixed. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Emily~ Shoot! There's supposed to be a link to Amazon, there, with a picture of the book. Anyway~ I added the book title to the post, and the author is David Platt.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Stacy,
    I think I told you this already.....

    I felt like every other paragraph I would say out loud to Chad: "Listen to this!! This is so true!!" And then by chapter 4 or 5 I may have said something like this to Chad: "I hate this book... I mean I LOVE this book, but it is ruining my life...I mean in a GOOD way...ugh!"

    Our mission trip team is working through the Bible study now. So I am reading it through a second time....and it is JUST as convicting!

    Can't wait to talk about this in face-to-face!!!! Bring your book and we can compare underlinings!!! Love you.

    :)
    michelle

    ReplyDelete
  5. i have this book, but haven't read it yet. it is on my shelf with about 3 others that i need to get to! i may have to move this one to the front of the line!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yes, I am now reading this book.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wow...hello conviction! We have been talking a lot lately about how our Americanism (corporately) is idolotrous, and how it affects the way we see God and see ourselves and our neighbor. I think I need to read this book!
    And I am just completely in love with your new blog design! Its so refreshing and lovely!
    love K

    ReplyDelete
  8. I can hardly wait to read this book...my sister keeps raving about it...thanks for the reminder!

    ReplyDelete
  9. My husband's small group leader *dared* his guys to read this book. My hubby took the dare and says this book is a game changer. I snatch it up whenever he leaves it around and am about halfway through. Wow! I'm so fired up and ready to wake myself up out of my modern comfortable slumber. Wake up America! The world needs us to use our money and our mouths for Jesus! Thanks Stacy for your awesome blog. You're so inspiring. Hugs from Texas.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh, Kristen... Yes. It is a must-read.

    Debi~
    ~smile~ Yay! I keep raving about it, too! :)

    Valerie~
    Yep. Isn't it so glaringly true, all of it? So glad you and your husband are reading it! Thank you for your kind words, too, Valerie!

    ReplyDelete
  11. The book is great, but the sermon series that David Platt preached before writing it all into a book is even better! You can really experience how heavy this message is on his heart. You can find it at http://www.brookhills.org/media/series/radical/
    I recommend watching the sermons even if you've already read the book. BTW, I love your blog. We are in the process of adopting from Ethiopia :). Thanks for sharing about adoption!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Last week I was trying to decide between this book and another but I ended up buying Crazy Love instead (another awesome book along this same concept). Thanks for sharing the info. I just bought Radical tonight and it will be my next read.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Jenny~ I know I already commented back to you on your blog, but for anyone who reads these comments I wanted to say here, too, that the sermon series is amazing. I've listened to some of them and I think Mark has listened to all of them (or most) and we LOVE THEM! :) Thanks for mentioning it!

    Krista~
    Crazy Love is really good, too! (As is his book Forgotten God). Let me know what you think about Radical! :)

    ~Stacy

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for commenting! I love hearing from you, and I will do
my best to reply back to you in the comment section.