Monday, March 8, 2010

The Last Christian on Earth

Another book to add to the "Must Read" cue: The Last Christian on Earth: Uncover the Enemy’s Plot to Undermine the Church by Os Guinness

Quote from the author, Os Guinness:

"...much of the church in the West is in a profound Babylonian captivity. It has become deeply worldly, like the European church before the Reformation.

Examples abound on all sides, though many of the crasser and more blatant ones are actually less damaging. For example, anyone with their eyes open can see the link between modern consumerism and the horrors of the health and wealth gospels. But fewer people have analyzed the links between our modern views of time, “fast life,” the “culture of immediacy,” and the equal errors of our recent Evangelical craze for “change,” “relevance,” “innovation,” and “thinking outside the box.” The result is that in the last few decades, many Evangelicals have become second only to the extremes of the Protestant mainline in the way they are energetically breeding forms of worldliness. So I believe we are in dire need of revival and reformation.

What The Last Christian on Earth does is describe the structures and spirit of the modern world, and show how they are the shoals on which much faith is foundering because it is not aware of them. This means that, contrary to many of good Reformed friends, theology alone is not the answer. Nor is having a “Christian worldview” the answer by itself, because that ignores the social context in which the worldview is lived. If “sound theology” and “thinking Christianly” lack an understanding of the distortions of the modern world, they simply will not be effective in the way their proponents hope. We must recognize the distorting structures of our modern world, and then with God’s help, overcome them with powerful Christian living inspired by deep Christian theology and thinking.

But my book is not so much a call for improved “cultural analysis,” as it is an open and passionate call for Evangelical renewal. The issue is faithfulness and discipleship, and how we are following the call of Jesus in our extraordinary modern times. I hope many people will finish the book and drop to their knees."

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