Greg Boyd, in his newest book, The Myth of a Christian Religion: Losing Your Religion for the Beauty of a Revolution
, takes no prisoners, minces no words, makes his points, states them clearly, and calls the reader to decision.
The issue for him has to do with whether we want to participate in what he calls the religion of Christianity or the Jesus revolution.
How central to the gospel and to the Christian faith is following Jesus? Is a Christian someone who follows Jesus? Or, would you define “Christian” in another way? How would you define it?
Boyd is like many: his own maturation in the faith led him to see the problems with the Church when held up against the standard of the Gospels. He learned the problem in three ways: the bloody history of the Church, the centrality of the example of Jesus in the Gospels/NT/early Christianity, and Moral Majority, which showed to him many things, not the least of which was their crusade to take back the country — and Boyd didn’t think that approach came from Jesus. Jesus didn’t seek change through assuming or gaining political power. He sought change through the cross.
“History teaches that the best way to destroy the Church is to give it political power” (13).
What is the Moral Majority’s “theory” on the relationship of State and Church? What is Boyd’s? What is the Kuyperian view? We need to discuss this so I’m counting on folks to pitch in…
His discovery is the discovery of the kingdom in the Gospels. “To the extent that any individual, church, or movement looks like that [Jesus], it manifests the Kingdom of God. To the extent that it doesn’t look like that, it doesn’t (14). He defines kingdom as reign, as God’s reign, and any time someone submits to God’s reign the kingdom is present.
The Christian religion focuses too much on what one believes. But the bride of Christ is married to Christ in its love. Obeying Jesus is the only way a person can be called a Christian. This kingdom is a new kind of Life.
Those who submit to the Jesus, who is the Head, form the Body. The Head and the Body form “Giant Jesus.”