Thursday, July 17, 2014


I think that this is the kind of book that someone might say changed their life.

It starts out as a history of God's temple, through the old testament, and talks about the significance of the tabernacle, and the ark of the covenant, and the High Priests, and sacrifice. The book goes into great detail about the history of all these things, and why they're important. It also makes reference to a lot of Old Testament prophecy about the coming of Jesus.

After this, the book shifts gear as it goes into the New Testament. It talks about all the things Jesus said about the Church, how He meticulously spells out how the church should be, what it is, and how it should behave. Then, on to Paul and the other Apostles, talking about how to behave in the church.

The bottom line of all this, is that Jesus very clearly and specifically spelt out what the New Testament church should look like, and that the church of Acts was exactly what He said it should be. Somewhere along the way, we've lost that, and the church has become a business, and our attention has been focused on raising money and attracting and retaining members.

There's a lot to digest here, and I think it's going to take much careful and prayerful thought on my part to make sense of it all. I think that this is a book that anybody who considers themselves a leader in the church should read, as well as anybody who says they're disillusioned with the church. I particularly enjoyed this one particular quote, which I'm going to paraphrase:

"Most Americans who are leaving the church today, are doing so not because they have lost their faith, but in order to KEEP their faith."

The thing is, I really enjoy Liturgy. Maybe that says something about my priorities as a Christian, but to me, Liturgy makes me feel like I'm part of a centuries old tradition, part of something bigger than myself. I don't know if Keith Giles is saying that we should completely scrap all that. Sometimes he seems to be saying so, but at other times he seems to be saying that these things are still as important and relevant today.

Another thing that irritated me, particularly early on, is how the author quotes certain passages from scripture, and then begins his explanation by saying things like "Clearly, this means that..." This frustrates me because I don't think anybody can say things like that, particularly since I recognize some of those passages as among the most controversial and hotly debated passages in the Bible, and everyone has their own interpretations of them.

Still, I honestly think that anybody who has an opinion about the Christian Church (which, let's face it, are plenty of Christians and non-Christians alike) should read this book. It's free, and you can get it from the author's website at

You'll be glad you did, although many of the thoughts presented will challenge and frighten you.


1 comment:

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