As I mentioned a few days ago in my post “Community and Multiplication“, I’ve been reading The Rabbit and the Elephant: Why Small is the New Big for Todayâ€™s Church by Tony and Felicity Dale and George Barna. I finished reading that book, and I’m working on the review now.
All I can say for now is that this book has helped me think about the church in new ways… ways that I see modeled in Scripture. I’m still processing alot of it though.
A few days ago, another book arrived. I’ve been waiting anxiously for this book as well. What book? The Jesus Paradigm by my PhD mentor David Alan Black. I’ve read a couple of chapters, but I thought I would tease you with a few quotes.
The “Good News” of the Gospel is precisely that the saving work of Christ provides not only the forgiving and saving grace of God but also God’s transforming and sanctifying grace that is mediated through God’s Word and Spirit. Jesus brought into existence a new reality in which the actual Person of Christ becomes as important as established theological positions about Christ. (11-12)
Are there any signs that all of our theologizing makes any difference in our lives?… The issue is best posed as follows: Is the evangelical church in America prepared to deal with biblical truth, not just on the intellectual level, but on the level of daily living? I sometimes think that our courses in theology and church history and Greek and Hebrew do more to distract us than to deepen our sense of mission. (24) (Remember that David Alan Black is a Greek professor.)
Yet if I, as a Christian, do not practice what I preach, if I continue to major in the minors, if “poor in spirit” remains but a meaningless platitude in my own life, then I am merely an admirer of Jesus and not a true follower. (29)
Yeah, this is a hard-hitting book. What is his purpose in writing? To help people move from cultural churchianity into being a radical follower of Jesus Christ.