Saturday, October 2, 2010

The Gospel According to Jesus by Chris Seay

Could it be that in the church today many do not understand the most basic concept of righteousness? A recent Barna study found that many associated righteousness with religious acts.This book was provided for review by Thomas Nelson Publishers.

The Reformation was founded on the need for the church to recapture a biblical understanding of righteousness. “It is both ironic and sad that five hundred years later only 38 percent of Christians who identify with the reformed traditions say they are very familiar with the concept of righteousness.” (126)
Seay defines righteousness as “God’s restorative justice.” He believes Christians have ignored, distorted and misunderstood the gospel according to Jesus. (13) Seay wants his readers to tune their lives to Jesus and his work of making all things right.
We are to become agents of restoration. We are not to see others as “good” or “bad” but broken. God invites us to join in his redemptive work in their lives.
Seay ends his book with the patterns in life that will lead us out of brokenness and into Christ-centered completeness. I was surprised as the list includes feasting, spending time in nature, being real, pursuing real friendships, knowing others genuinely as well as other, more traditional disciplines.
Seay concludes, “I believe that God can redeem all things, that what is broken God seeks to fix, and that he uses his people, his church, to bring restorative justice to all things that are broken.” (197)
This is a look at righteousness and the work of God that is new to me. I wish there had been discussion questions included for group use. Nonetheless, this is a book that will get you to thinking, and hopefully to action, as we participate in God’s work in the world.
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