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Heaven is Not My Home: Learning to Live in God's Creation [Hardcover]

Paul A Marshall , Lela Gilbert
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 269 pages
  • Publisher: Word Publishing,US (Jan 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 084991471X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0849914713
  • Product Dimensions: 21.1 x 14.2 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,211,955 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
I became a Christian at a Billy Graham Crusade in England in the mid-60s. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
If the Christian church can be called a sleeping giant, than this book is without a doubt its wake-up call.
Using very clear language, vivid description, and intriguing personal stories, this book drives home the point that Christians are called to be at home in God's world, and about the King's business, rather than always attempting to escape this world.
The impressive endorsements by notable figures such as evangelical theologian J.I. Packer ring true as one reads chapter after surprising and enjoyable chapter. This book will help the church discover a very old and orthodox truth: Christ frees us up to be fully human and radically engaged in realizing in the here and now his age-old purposes for his world. No, it will not all burn in the end as some milennium fear-mongers would have us believe. God has not fashioned the works of his hands to end in futility, but to be infused with meaning and purpose. Rather with Christ's return, our world--perfected with its redeemed and transformed people, animals, institutions, and ALL that God has made--will ineed blaze brilliantly with the glory of its Creator.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Biblical view of all of creation 29 April 1999
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book encapsulates and summarizes much of my own struggle with Western Christianity. If my faith is true, then why is it that it seems only to speak of what is beyond this life? Is there not meaning to life here? Is there not inherent value in work itself, or in art, or even in play?
This book is not only a strong challenge to commonly held Christian perspectives, it is wonderfully freeing. It means that I can find God in even the simplest and "menial" of tasks - not just those so-called higher things associated with church and "spiritual" life. It lays to rest the dualist heresy many evangelicals live.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Biblical view of all of creation 29 April 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book encapsulates and summarizes much of my own struggle with Western Christianity. If my faith is true, then why is it that it seems only to speak of what is beyond this life? Is there not meaning to life here? Is there not inherent value in work itself, or in art, or even in play?
This book is not only a strong challenge to commonly held Christian perspectives, it is wonderfully freeing. It means that I can find God in even the simplest and "menial" of tasks - not just those so-called higher things associated with church and "spiritual" life. It lays to rest the dualist heresy many evangelicals live.
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-read for relating one's faith to today's culture 6 Feb 1999
By stephen@cpjustice.org Stephen Lazarus - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
If the Christian church can be called a sleeping giant, than this book is without a doubt its wake-up call.
Using very clear language, vivid description, and intriguing personal stories, this book drives home the point that Christians are called to be at home in God's world, and about the King's business, rather than always attempting to escape this world.
The impressive endorsements by notable figures such as evangelical theologian J.I. Packer ring true as one reads chapter after surprising and enjoyable chapter. This book will help the church discover a very old and orthodox truth: Christ frees us up to be fully human and radically engaged in realizing in the here and now his age-old purposes for his world. No, it will not all burn in the end as some milennium fear-mongers would have us believe. God has not fashioned the works of his hands to end in futility, but to be infused with meaning and purpose. Rather with Christ's return, our world--perfected with its redeemed and transformed people, animals, institutions, and ALL that God has made--will ineed blaze brilliantly with the glory of its Creator.
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Catalyst for Thinking Christianly About God's World 17 April 2000
By Gregory Dunn - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is one of the best introductions to Christian worldview thinking I have read and should prompt one to more robust reflection on the many ways one's commitment to Christ should form all of life. Marshall's treatment is thoroughly biblical, and he writes in an engaging style. He first explains the Reformed pattern of Creation-Fall-Redemption-Consummation and then explores its impact on our learning, our work, our rest, and our play, as well as its implications for how we think about the natural world, politics, the arts, and technology, among other topics. Throughout, he utilizes clear illustrations and helpful applications that make the biblical principles concrete. (For example, his discussion about how to think about the way we dress is alone worth the price of admission.) All told, Heaven Is Not My Home is an excellent catalyst for thinking Christianly about God's world.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific book on the Christian's earthly responsibilities 4 Aug 2003
By David T. Wayne - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
The author definitely chose a provocative title for this book. I hope that no one avoids it because of the title. If you read between the lines you can see that he is not denying the biblical doctrine of the eternal state. In fact, I thought that another way of titling the book could have been "Disembodied existence somewhere in an ethereal third dimension is not my destiny."
The view that many Christians have is that, after this life, our souls go to heaven and we walk streets of gold, wearing white robes and singing hymns for eternity. What Marshall does is show that our eternal destiny may in fact look a bit more like our current earthly existence than we realize.
Marshall correctly brings out the biblical teaching that the created order is basically good, and therefore it can be embraced. Sin is not the essence of the creation, sin is an imposter.
Because many Christians have wrongly interpreted Biblical passages on the world and worldliness we have adopted an attitude that sees this world as something evil at worst, or unnecessary at best. Either way, this world and this earth and this creation are to be avoided or endured until the time when we will be freed from all of it.
However, Marshall shows very well that sin is to be removed from the creation, the creation itself is not destined to perish. He demonstrates that this creation is destined for renewal, not eradication. Eternity will be spent in a new heavens and a new earth.
Such a view has implications for how we live now. Our work, our rest, our play, our culture, our politics, and all human activity has value. We are to embrace our earthly callings. He makes the comment that all honest work is pleasing to God. Paul tells us - wheter we eat or drink, do all to the glory of God.
All of life can be and should be done to the glory of God.
One weakness of the book is that he does go overboard on showing that this earth is our home. I once had a professor who said that when a ship is listing badly to the right, you don't jump up and down in the center to get it straightened out. You jump up and down on the left. I think this is what Marshall has done here - he has seen how the church has overdone it on the otherworldliness and is trying to get us back on course about our responsibilities in the here and now. As such, he doesn't deal adequately with the verses that speak of our identity as pilgrims, strangers, aliens, etc..
With this minor weakness I still have no problem giving the book 5 stars. It is a beneficial and necessary read for Christians.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent summary of much good Christian thinking 28 Jun 2002
By Jeffrey A Heidkamp - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is insightful, readable, enjoyable, and brilliant. I will recommend it to many friends. Marshall summarized many of my thoughts about modern Christianity, and challenged me to take the Kingdom call of God more seriously in my everyday life. Highly recommended.
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