Monday, May 19, 2008

Jesus for President

"Jesus for President" is the title of Shane Claiborne's new book and I am SO excited to read it! YOU should read it too!

I saw Shane speak tonight and it was awesome.
Some key points that I jotted down on a scrap piece of paper during the lecture/sermon/whatever it was...

* In Luke 7 when John the Baptist asks if Jesus is "the one", Jesus tells the disciples to report back to John what they "SAW" and what they "HEARD". Jesus didn't go around town shouting out that He was the Messiah (actually He didn't want that at all...). People should be able to know we follow Christ because they can SEE it and HEAR it from our lives.

* With that said, Shane says, " We (Christians) shout so loudly with our mouths, and live so ugly with our lives."

* In a poll taken by the average American questioning them with, "What is the first thing you think of when you think of a Christian", the top three answers were:
1 - Anti-gay
2 - Judgmental
3 - Hypocrites
...great reputations we have.

* Shane says, "If there was ever a picture of "just" war, it would have been Peter protecting Jesus (who was innocent) in the garden. But when Peter cuts off the soldiers ear, Jesus scolds him."
...Shane says no war, no violence (just in case you are wondering...)

Anyway, it was great, he's great, pick up the book...but start with Irresistible Revolution if you haven't read that one yet. I am sure my blog will be full of Shane quotes in the coming days, yay!


Maritza said...

wow this book sounds wonderful. i cant wait till we read irresistable revolution, so that i can start this one!

Andrew Faris said...

Jesus also was the one who issued the Great Commission, which has a lot to do with telling people about Jesus. Paul quoted Micah to remind his readers about the beauty of the feet of those who go proclaiming the gospel.

A little opposition ought not surprise us, and not necessarily distract us too much either. A lot of people in Paul's day probably thought of him as anti-Jewish, anti-pagan, and maybe even anti-gay, but the fact that some people confused his message didn't stop him from boldly proclaiming it. Not to mention all that stuff that other guy in the New Testament said somewhere about how when people hate the master, they'll really hate the servants. It comes with the territory.

I'd add too that I think the media has a lot to do with people's perceptions of us. That is to say that just because people perceive something about us doesn't mean that we are really the ones making them perceive that, or at least not entirely. Know what I mean?

Note also that Paul's social justice ministry was almost entirely to the church at Jerusalem, not to non-believers. He mostly stuck with the gospel for them. Not to say we shouldn't carry out social justice, but I think sometimes we need to remember social justice to the church as the high priority that it is.

Bottom line, I just get really nervous about elevating social justice to equality with the gospel, even if the gospel contains some serious calls to social justice.

Good point about seeing and hearing from Lk. 7 though. Perhaps Claiborne just needs to remember that Jesus told people to tell John the Baptist that.

Carrie Marie said...

Ooo, boo-yah. I love the last line of what you said Andrew.

You definitely make some good points here, and I am just really excited that you commented on my blog ;)

I definitely agree with you that "social justice" should be provided to belivers first and foremost (though that can sound mean, it's biblical).

I will be honest with you, I definitely like a lot of what Shane does, but I can't dive into his book and take it all as the innerant word of God. Shane takes things a little too over the top sometimes. But here is the thing - I take things too lightly, too many times. I like the passion that Shane brings to the table because it makes me passionate about loving people, and living in a solid community. Then I take those passions that ignite in me, and live it out as biblically as I see possibly, in my life.

But I do want to say that I do feel as if Christians do have a bad reputation in this world. We can be way more of a light in this dark place, and I am excited to be part of the next generation to try and do so.

Andrew Faris said...

Your attitude is one I need more of: I need to be more concerned about being a brighter light all the time. We really never have reason to be satisfied with what we've done in obedience to Christ this side of the Final Resurrection.

I just wish things didn't have to be overstated to make an impact I guess. Claiborne probably has some good points in there, but it gets hard for me to take them seriously when they lack carefulness or when they generally sound reactionary. The reality is that most times the pendulum has to swing way to the other side before things get straightened out, but it's too bad this is the reality. In fact, I think most times it ends up not evening out in the end- we just end up on one side of the swing or the other.

In any case, I need to read Claiborne. Maybe this summer. He's made too big of a cultural impact for me to not do so. Plus you like him, and I respect you, so there you have it.

And I'm quite glad to post in fact! Thanks for having a blog that's fun to read.

Carrie Marie said...

I think there is beauty in statements that are overstated. We must remember that we can't control other people, but we can control how WE react and perceive things.

For instance, I am not the biggest fan of what Wayne Grudem and John Piper do with all their complementarianism stuff, I think they go a little overboard. But this doesn't mean I am not going to sit down with a cup of coffee and enjoy "Don't Waste Your Life" (because that one is my fave.). OR, in fact, I will still sit down and read through their stuff on complementarinism...let the Lord work in my heart as I read.

I like reading Shane's overstated things because it is what he truly believes, and he is my brother, so Ieast I can do is hear him out. I don't have to go tromping off to the "Simple Way", and live in a house with him and 10 other people, and sew my own clothes together, but I can be patient, and let the Lord speak to me as I read what he says.

The same goes for all this drama over the book: "The Shack". I am currently reading it, so I don't have an opinion yet, but I will write a review at the end.

Anyway, I would be happy if you read Shane this summer, preferable his first book: "Irresistible Revolution", because it's looking like "Jesus For President" is definitely not as good as "IR".

Thanks friend. :)

And yes, we need to be a light! But I think this is just so important to me right now because of all my work in Exodus this semester. Those Israelites failed so badly...I don't ever want to look back to "Egypt"...I only want to look forward, for the glory of His name.