2008-05-05

Book Excerpt Review

Received an email inviting me to consider reading this book "The Fidelity of Betrayal: Towards a Church Beyond Belief". The excerpt that I read and am reviewing can be found here. The email included this short summary:

In this work I make the claim that, in order to remain faithful to Christianity, we must be courageous enough to betray the bible (section 1), God (section 2) and the church (section 3). Why? Do I think that we must abandon them as redundant relics of a by-gone era? Do I think that they have served their purpose? Or do I feel that they prevent the world coming of age? By no means! Here I argue for a betrayal that remains faithful to these very words by helping us to re- discover the truly untamed, white-hot, life-transforming reality that they house.

My initial reaction was to move on and ignore this completely. But I was intrigued at the same time that anyone could even believe this could be a valid viewpoint so here I am.

I found the story in the prologue to be thought provoking. I don't think the leaders response is right either but it is not like they have done anything wrong in their response. I'm not sure the caretaker's response is right either but in some way it is good. I think it is this goodness that makes me want to ponder this issue further. At the same time part of me asks who are we that we should respond to God in this way.

The introduction gives a second meaning to the recently popular question "What Would Jesus Do?" or WWJD. The author refers to a parody "What Would Judas Do?" and uses it as a springboard. While I have liked the original question, I have not liked the commercialization that we have done with it and I believe the author would agree. I got the impression that it was what we have made the church in this regard that the author would have us betray and that he believes Jesus would do the same if he came lived now.

While part of me still opposes the idea as stated originally, I do think this would be an interesting and thought provoking read, but only for those who are strong in their faith and knowledge of what they believe.

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