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Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary [Kindle Edition]

J.D. Greear , Timothy Keller
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Could the gospel be lost in evangelical churches? In this book, J.D. Greear shows how moralism and legalism have often eclipsed the gospel, even in conservative churches. Gospel cuts through the superficiality of religion and reacquaints you with the revolutionary truth of God's gracious acceptance of us in Christ. The gospel is the power of God, and the only true source of joy, freedom, radical generosity, and audacious faith. The gospel produces in us what religion never could: a heart that desires God.

The book’s core is a “gospel prayer” by which you can saturate yourself in the gospel daily. Dwelling on the gospel will release in you new depths of passion for God and take you to new heights of obedience to Him. Gospel gives you an applicable, exciting vision of how God will use you to bring His healing to the world.

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1257 KB
  • Print Length: 288 pages
  • Publisher: B&H Publishing Group (2 Dec. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005N045L2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
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  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #205,205 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Simple, funny and the truth. It set me off on the right relationship with God. As a new Christian, with limited concept of relationship with God as opposed to fruitless religion, this book guided me on to the path to freedom.
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Very much enjoyed.
Incredibly helpful to me, my family, my church, my town.

This would be a great book for any exploration of what Christianity is all about - for the religious or the irreligious.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 17 Sept. 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Excellent book. Loved it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 10 Dec. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
very very good book
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.8 out of 5 stars  226 reviews
45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! What a Fantastic Christ-Centered Book! 27 Sept. 2011
By Dr. David P. Craig - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I never heard of J. D. Greear before reading this book; but after reading this one, I immediately purchased his only other published book called "Breaking the Islam Code" and can't wait to get started on that one. I'm sure many more books from Greear will follow - because he is an exceptionally gifted theologian/pastor - he is astute, cogent, and practical in his biblical and cultural exposition of the gospel as revealed in the Scriptures.

I've been a Christian since I was six years old, but even as a so-called "professional" pastor for the past 25 years and yet I still feel like a baby in my understanding of the depths of the gospel. It has been exciting for me to see how pastors like Tim Keller and a new generation of young pastors have come along who are theologically astute and Christ centered and able to show the relevancy of Christ and the gospel and how it works not only in the past, and in the future, but especially in the NOW. We are the NOW generation, and the best way to live in the NOW is to apply the gospel daily.

It's hard to improve on Tullian Tchvidjian's description of the book from the inside cover:

"He [Greear] powerfully and probingly shows the gospel is just as necessary and relevant after you become a Christian as it is before because the gospel doesn't simply rescue us from the past and rescue us for the future; it also rescues us in the present from being enslaved to things like fear, insecurity, anger, self-reliance, bitterness, entitlement, and igsignificance. J. D. makes the clear case that when the word of the gospel--Christ's love for us without strings attached--grips our hearts, it sets us free and changes everything."

In three powerful sections in the book Greear shows how "the gospel can do what religion cannot"; how to daily live out the gospel (the longest section of the book - absolutely fantastic); and how to develop a gospel-centered understanding of life.

Get two copies of this book - one to read year after year - and another to give away. I hope this book receives a wide reading, reception of, and application of the "revolutionary" gospel!
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gospel-Saturated and Christ Exalting 3 Oct. 2011
By Matt Boyd - Published on
I cannot imagine writing a book and then being so bold to title with something such as Gospel, but that is exactly what J.D. Greear has done in his newest release along with a subtitle of Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary. Greear is very clear from his introduction that his reason for writing the book is because he like many in the church have gotten to a place where they are finding Christianity to be wearisome with all of the "do's and don'ts" that categorize someone as a "good" Christian. Thoughts that are categorized in statements like once you become a Christian, "don't drink, don't dance, don't chew, and don't go with girls that do."

Greear admits however, that recently he has discovered something that has changed everything, the gospel. And in this rediscovering of the gospel it has given him a joy in God that he never experienced in all his years of fervent religion. I believe that this is what many, I may even be as bold to say what most Christians need to rediscover because when I look at the church, specifically in America, what I see is a bunch of wearisome Christians who have forgotten the power that made Christianity Revolutionary, the gospel.

I feel like it is necessary to give Greear's definition of the gospel from the book because I know many who are questioning what that even means in today's context. "The gospel is the announcement that God has reconciled us to Himself by sending His Son Jesus to die as a substitute for our sins, and that all who repent and believe have eternal life in Him. The gospel is that Christ has suffered the full wrath of God for my sin." And in this rediscovering of the gospel, Greear wants to through this book help people simply abide in Jesus because abiding in Jesus will change everything by creating a re-defined life.

A re-defined life is where the turning point comes for Greear and will come for you. He goes on to say, "The Gospel has done in my heart what religion never could." This statement hits at the core of what most all of us have experienced in trying to "do good" in order to be accepted only to learn the reality of the gospel that we are only accepted because of what Jesus has already done. Greear points to this in 2 Corinthians 5:21 that says that He (Christ) actually became our sin so that we could literally become His righteousness.

This should be liberating to us, especially those of us that grew up in a tradition where it in essence was all about us and our performance that made us acceptable to Christ. This verse takes that whole idea and concept and flips it upside down, which may sound strange, but in reality it is freeing when you understand and realize that it is all about Christ and what he has done.

I believe what Greear has done in this book is to break down into three parts what many Christians have been longing to understand deeper for years. Part one answering how the gospel does what religion cannot. Part two is broken down by what Greear refers to as the gospel prayer. Part three helps point people toward a gospel-centered understanding of life.

In part two Greear has opened up his personal life by providing a tool for the church that he has been using for years, which allows one to saturate themselves in the gospel daily. This is referred to throughout the book as "The Gospel Prayer."

Here are the four parts of "The Gospel Prayer":

1. "In Christ, there is nothing I can do that would make You love me more, and nothing I have done that makes You love me less."

2. "Your presence and approval are all I need for everlasting joy."

3. "As You have been to me so I will be to others."

4. "As I pray, I'll measure Your compassion by the cross and Your power by the resurrection."

I believe that most people in the church will find this book to be a refreshing and encouraging one, but also one that may convict and challenge people in many ways. Greear is clear and faithful in his presentation, but also humble as you sense that he really desires to see all people fall back in love with this power of Christianity in the gospel.

After reading this book, I highly endorse and recommend it as Greear leaves me with a hope for evangelicalism and the church as a whole that there will be a recovery of the gospel as the center of Christianity. Gospel is a game changer and a book that you will want to spend some time in no matter where you are in your faith as it will help you in achieving a daily gospel-saturated life that will produce a consuming passion for God and love for others.
63 of 73 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gospel or Grace 26 July 2012
By Jim - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Let me first state that I enjoyed reading Dr. Greear's Book, Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary. He has a very laid back, simple style with good doses of humor sprinkled throughout. Hense this books very strengths are its weakness. There has been other books that have covered this topic in greater detail and depth. The problem I had with this book was not just the lack of depth but precision such as the author's all too brief treatment of grace. Often he uses the term, gospel when I believe he meant, grace. True, we come to understand who God is by the gospel. We come to understand God's redemptive plan by the gospel but we are motivated and empowered by God's grace. Missing too from this books daily gospel prayer is daily repentance. Nevertheless, let me say that I believe I can see Dr. Greear's heart throughout this book. It is a worthy goal to motivate the saints to "good works" through the love of Christ displayed at the cross. That is why Christ said that His burden was "light." I believe the following 4 books cover this topic far more completely. First is Jerry Bridges' "Transforming Grace," second is John Piper's 2 books, "God's Passion for His Glory" and "Desiring God" and J.I. Packers, "Knowing God." Finally, let me state that it is far easier to be a critic of a book than an author of one. To that end, it was my intent to inform not merely to throw stones at glass houses. Thank you.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Life Changer 17 Nov. 2011
By dsimmons121 - Published on
Gospel: Recovering the Power That Made Christianity Revolutionary, by JD Greear, combats one of the greatest misconceptions about Christianity: that Christianity is about what we do for God. If that was reality, then we should we should strive to live holy lives, be generous, kind, and share our faith so that God would be pleased and look favorably on us. Every page of JD's book combats this lie, and instead lays out the good news of Jesus--that though man is separated from God to such a degree that there is nothing he can do to get back to God, man can be saved by the work of Christ. I won't go into the implications of this, because that is why I think you should read the book. I will say though that to understand the gospel will bring the greatest freedom and the greatest joy a person could ever imagine. It is the way to know God, to be loved by God, to be His friend, and the gospel changes us into the image of God. JD Greear lays this out with skill of a learned theologian, the honesty and compassion of a good pastor, the humility of a great leader, and the humor and wit of a guy you would want at your next Christmas party.

Two of the greatest strengths of the book are as follows: First, there is a prayer that God formed in Greear's life as he began to understand the depth of the gospel. The prayer is four-fold, and it aims to bring the life of the reader under the authority of Christ. I have personally been praying this prayer now for 3 months, and it has lead to a depth with God I have not had in a long time. To understand not just on an intellectual level, but on a heart level the wonderful truths of the gospel will unleash a power and joy in a person's life that will be almost too much to bear. This prayer is a good tool to use in understanding the gospel, and I would recommend the book based off the prayer alone.

Second, Greear makes it clear that the gospel saves us from sin, death, and the wrath of God, but he also makes it clear that the also gospel saves us to something. Generosity, holy living, being a good parent, being an ace at reformed theology, living missionally, none of these save us, none of these bring God's favor, none of these are the good news of Christ, but, once we understand we are saved by the work of Jesus alone, our hearts will be changed and we will want to do these things. People that God changes He calls to live out the gift that has been given to them, but that is as natural as saying once a person is married, they are called to live out being a husband or a wife. It is not a burden but a joy if we see the gospel.

I highly recommend this book. Lamentations 3 tells us that God's mercies are new every morning. Since that is true, every day we can understand and know God deeper than the day before. We can understand with greater clarity the abundant life of John 10:10, we can take up the mantel of "royal priest," we can ask God for amazing things as Moses did in Exodus 33, and we can fearlessly live out the great commission.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gospel 24 Oct. 2011
By Baggins - Published on
Even as as somebody who understands that salvation is by God's grace alone, I'm prone to living life like I have to do certain things to make God look at me in a loving way. Everyday is a constant rocking back and forth between believing God's love for me through Christ is unconditional and believing that I have to earn I love this book because chapter after chapter it hammers my unbelief with gospel truth and constantly revisits my innermost problem: I think I can do it on my own. The gospel isn't just the diving board that a Christian jumps off of and then lives the rest of his life attempting to obey's the whole swimming pool. It's the constant source of forgiveness, love and acceptance that sinners need to live a lifestyle of walking with God. JD makes it a point to continually revisit this throughout the book amidst teaching the reader how to pursue holiness because he understands that without having a gospel-centered approach to seeking God, we will quickly turn to finding our worth in how well things are going and our circumstances around us. The reality is, a follower of Christ already has his circumstances firmly secure in what Jesus has already done through the cross and resurrection, and that is where true and authentic power to obey God is drawn from. JD Greear unpacks this as well as anybody else probably could and does so in a way that is extremely relevant and enjoyable to read.

I also highly suggest listening to a sermon or two of his before you read the book....he has a great sense of humor that you'll probably enjoy more in reading if you get a feel for his personality in preaching.

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