Beliefnet
Jesus Creed

Some of you have seen this review of mine at Christianity Today. I’m happy to hear your responses at this site, but I’ll only clip the opening two paragraphs from the CT piece. I like Brian, and I think Brian is a good man, and I think he said important things that we evangelicals need to hear, but what I think of Brian as a person is not the same as what I think of his latest book: A New Kind of Christianity: Ten Questions That Are Transforming the Faith
. So, I’d appreciate it if this review does not turn into a “I like Brian” or “I dislike Brian” contest. The issue is what he has written. Here are the first paragraphs of my review…


Let’s have a conversation on this site about the review and the book. Have you read the book? What did you think? What did you like? What did you disagree with him about? How does this book fit with his other books? Any changes you see?
Brian McLaren has grown tired of evangelicalism. In turn, many evangelicals are wearied with Brian. His most recent book, A New Kind of Christianity: Ten Questions That Are Transforming the Faith (HarperOne), must be understood as his latest iteration of a project of deconstructing the old and reconstructing a new kind of Christian faith. In it, he poses a question that this review will seek to answer. It is a question he asks of himself: “How did a mild-mannered guy like me get into so much trouble?” Or, as he asks one page later, “How did I get into this swirl of controversy?”

As a friend and a chronicler for more than a decade, I have watched Brian’s work. Generous Orthodoxy gave us a critique of both sides and some glimpses of a third way, even if the book frustrated to no end by leaving too many loose ends dangling. I thought both The Secret Message of Jesus and Everything Must Change provided us with what could become an evangelical social gospel. Along the way, Brian has poked evangelicals in the eyes and chest by fixating on sensitive spots that bedevil them–not the least of which is the uneasy connection between the “spiritual” gospel and the “social” gospel. If evangelicalism is characterized by David Bebbington’s famous quadrilateral–that is, biblicism, crucicentrism, conversionism, and activism–then Brian has poked and, to one degree or another, criticized, deconstructed, and rejected each.

[The link above will take you to the rest of the review.]

Advertisement

Previous Posts
Join the Discussion
comments powered by Disqus