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StormFront: The Good News of God (Gospel & Our Culture) (The Gospel and Our Culture Series (GOCS)) Paperback – 5 Jan 2004


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Review

Stephen Bevans
"The gospel imaged as a storm presents a disturbing but ultimately life-giving image of God's and the church's missional presence in our world. Like the raging wind and pounding rain of a summer storm, God's good news is a power that sweeps away dead branches of faith and floods cracked foundations of institutions. At the same time, though, it brings new freshness into our heavy, stagnant lives. The authors of this book do not mince words. If the church is to change it needs this disturbing gospel to cleanse it and give it life."
Missionalia
"Deals effectively with important issues and fundamentally challenges the church to become a missional church.""

Stephen Bevans "The gospel imaged as a storm presents a disturbing but ultimately life-giving image of God's and the church's missional presence in our world. Like the raging wind and pounding rain of a summer storm, God's good news is a power that sweeps away dead branches of faith and floods cracked foundations of institutions. At the same time, though, it brings new freshness into our heavy, stagnant lives. The authors of this book do not mince words. If the church is to change it needs this disturbing gospel to cleanse it and give it life."Missionalia "Deals effectively with important issues and fundamentally challenges the church to become a missional church.""

From the Back Cover

Foreword by George R. Hunsberger

How does one authentically hear and live out the gospel in North America? This new book attempts to answer this question in a way that reveals much about the nature of Christian faith today and its relation to contemporary culture.

In keeping with the aims of the acclaimed Gospel and Our Culture series, "StormFront investigates how the gospel intersects American culture and seeks to reorient the church to its full and proper missional vocation. Four authors noted for their understanding of modern church life offer a sober yet hopeful critique of American culture that focuses on consumerism and the privatization of religion, and they challenge the Christian church to embrace its corporate task to be salt and light to the world.

Amid the many books on the subject, this one is distinctive in its concern for application. By constrasting contemporary life with a thoroughgoing reading of the biblical narrative, the authors help American Christians discern how our cultural location makes it difficult to live out the transformative message of the gospel. Few readers will fail to be engaged by the lessons offered here.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x91f8a534) out of 5 stars 7 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x90b17540) out of 5 stars Get the whole story... 28 Oct. 2003
By Steve Wright - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Finally, a resource to clarify "missional" ideas in a way that helps ordinary people grasp the significance of the storm we are in. The authors do an excellent job of charting a course that is faithful to God and inviting to all who want to participate in the grand mission of God.
As the pastor of a new church in a new community, I continue to wrestle with the implications of this book: "The church is a witness to the world, in the world, of God's coming reign in Christ over the powers of the world" (91). The book is a valuable resource for all who are tired of "paint-by-numbers" approaches to the church. "Stormfront" is a book for all who long to discover God's alternative to consumer-driven models of ministry. Buy it. Read it. Share it with your friends. Discuss it. Live it, believe it and so be a participant in the "Missio Dei."
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x920bc768) out of 5 stars Unpacking the gospel in all of its richness and depth 28 Oct. 2004
By D.E. Eagle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
What is the gospel? A seemingly simple question, but deep down, one that requires us to examine the very foundation of our Christian faith. StormFront: The Good News of God sets out to answer this very question, what is the gospel? StormFront is the latest book in the Gospel and Our Culture Series, which seeks to help the church more faithfully engage North American culture with the gospel. Other volumes have included The Missional Church, and The Continuing Conversion of the Church.

The title is meant to evoke the image of two masses of hot and cold air running into each other and creating a violent storm. One of these air masses is the Kingdom of God, the other is the Kingdom of this World. The church finds itself at the intersection, caught in the clash between these two forces. It is in this "dynamic and tumultuous" intersection where God engages our world.

The authors claim that many North American Christians act as if the gospel were a small ocean breeze, rather than a raging storm. The North American gospel, they argue, primarily centers on how God can meet my needs and how God can fulfill my desires. It has little sense of God's greater purposes in this world. They contend a Biblical understanding of the gospel looks a lot different. The gospel concerns God's activity to redeem the whole creation. The gospel isn't about me getting what I want. The gospel invites us to enter, receive, and participate in God's Reign, initiated by Jesus' life, death and resurrection. This gospel should radically reorient our lives.

Through the book's five chapters it examines our dominant understanding of the gospel, God's intentions on earth as found in the Old and New Testaments, the role of spiritual powers, the place of discipleship, and the practices that help us embody the gospel. The section connecting the gospel in the New Testament to the Old Testament is particularly helpful.

Few books accomplish what they set out to do. Impressively, StormFront does effectively answer the question: What is the gospel? And beyond that, on the practical level, it issues a significant challenge both for individuals and the church to participate more fully in God's purposes on earth.

Although this book is targeted to lay-readers, it is a dense and difficult read. It contains a great deal of theological language that can be at times hard to sift through. But for those willing to take the time and effort, they will find their understanding of the gospel deepened, and their faith commitments inspired and challenged.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x91508204) out of 5 stars Refreshing, Rich, Readable 21 Mar. 2013
By Fred Liggin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a brilliantly written concise work on the gospel of God's Kingdom that meets the church on ground level. It is theologically fleshed out in a way that is accessible to the non-seminarian, yet deep enough for the seminarian. Personally, I feel as though this book fills a gap created in popular christian culture concerning gospel, missiology and the kingdom of God. It's themes move easily from theology to practice, yet not in a way that is caricatured in pragmatism. It is a call to the Church to live on mission with God in both market place and the neighborhood, and offers a framework (of sorts) as to how the Church must be postured in order to do so. Theologically rich and practically incisive.

I am thinking about working out a small group study for this book. I highly recommend this book for everyone.
HASH(0x915291ec) out of 5 stars Faith in the 21st century 16 Aug. 2005
By Mary Lou K - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book has been greatly helpful for me to understand the current state of affairs in the church. I have lived in many other countries in my adult life and "coming home" has not been easy. Despite the book's focus on the USA context, it is also an immensely appropriate resource for reflecting on our context in Canada. The book's thesis that the church has been caught up so seductively in all aspects of a "consumer" culture that we approach our faith and religious experience with the same value system is powerful and deeply sobering. While "easy-reading" the book is not an "easy read" since its premise demands that we refocus our lives on our call to be a community living out God's vision for hope and grace and justice in the world.
HASH(0x90b17a98) out of 5 stars This book served as a good reminder for me of how often we have made ... 17 July 2016
By Mr. Daniel C. Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book served as a good reminder for me of how often we have made the gospel a therapeutic message and failed to point people to the life changing power it really has. The gospel gives all and demands all. We speak about the first part often, but often neglect the second half.
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