Here is my review for your book That Old Devil Called God Again. I'm not great at reviews, so you will have to bare with me:
Here is a very thought provoking book that brings religion into the 21st century by adding a sprinkle of common sense. It covers areas like religion as a whole for example the church, the bible, worship, prayer, ritual and Mass to name but a few. Also there is a chapter giving a concise autobiography about Archbishop Jonathan Blake, the author.
The book then speaks about a new way of believing, worshipping, about God etc.
All in all a brilliant read for all those with an open mind, as the first few chapters are no holes barred, straight to the point and may not suit some audiences especially die hard Christians, though I do say all Christians should read this book. Don't take my word for it, buy this book and make up your own mind. You won't be disappointed.
That Old Devil Called God Again: The Scourge of Religion. Archbishop Jonathan serves up some common sense about the self-serving excesses and hypocracy of some Men-of-God who perport to bring us God's message. I did however, read his really interesting book with the knowledge that his opinion about the use of prayer is exectly the same as mine. This volume will be read by a few others who do not share our opinion. Be careful of them unless they have an open mind. This book will share space with his other book, "For God's Sake Don't Go To Church". Here is some honesty about the corrupt established church, the corrupt free churches and the corrupt church of Rome. This is a book that should be read by all real rebels of the so called Christian message. That message is nothing of the sort. Here is the message of Jesus; the radical revolutionary of the Jewish religious excesses, This is the true message of Jesus Christ. It should be compulsary reading for all Bishops,Priests, and Deacons, by all Pastors, Preachers and Missionaries.
It took me a llloooonnggg time to read this book. Occasionally a book comes along that is so powerful you cannot put it down, and then, once in a blue moon, one is published that has a text that blows your mind, and you are forced to walk away, only to be drawn back and not only continue to read, but RE-read what you think you previously saw. I have never in my whole Christian life (56yrs to date) read anything so challenging. Every single 'religious' thinking person needs to read, and digest this book. One may not agree with everything written, Bishop Jonathan himself promotes everybody to think for themselves, BUT, this book tackles centuries of indoctrination and, like a sword, thrusts to the heart of faith. It re-emerges dripping with LOVE. May Umm bless you Jonathan Blake Tim Hodge (Taunton Somerset)
This book is a must for everyone, even those ambivalent about religion. The subject matter and the way that Archbishop Jonathan Blake writes is quite tough to take in the first half of the book, a lot of truths about the dark side of mankind. It then mellows, and becomes a covert guide for making the world a better place for everyone. It will stay on your mind a long time after you've finished it, and is no doubt a perfect, controversial choice for anyone in a book club.
I loved this book as it gave me a lot of insight into how the religious groups like to control the individual and this is something that needs to change. One of my best quotes from the book which summarises how I feel is:
"It is only when we stop believing in God and stop thinking about God and stop praying to God and stop worshiping God and stop having anything to do with God or giving any thought to God that we can be true"
Bishop Jonathan is as controversial as ever in his newest publication. There are some challenging, thought provoking ideas that lead the reader to question and re think some of the traditional teachings of the church. There is plenty of tough talk, and bold statements on world issues, the bible, Jesus, Church, and of course God. At times it may seem that there is no room for God In today's secular society, or that there is any hope for faith in a dying man made institution that is the Church, yet Bishop Jonathan shows that there is hope for the world, not from a supernatural being that is a God made up to reflect and justify the actions of men, in the image of men, instead hope comes from Love. This is a powerful read, not for the faint hearted, but for people who want to push the boundaries of institutionalised religion, and break free, and explore a relationship with the world, and each other.
It is difficult to decide for whom this interesting book was written. It is a fiery and much needed polemic against bible-based and institutionalised Christianity, but people in both those categories are usually so intransigently fixed in their beliefs that they will not change. Other interested readers will know all the arguments and facts presented here since they have been widely discussed over the past two centuries, and yet others - the majority – have no interest in these matters at all and so will not pick this book up despite its intriguing title. The book is well written and drives the reader on throughout, with many interesting examples laid out. The last quarter of the book is about Archbishop Jonathan’s dealings with the dying Jade Goody, and his pleasing idiosyncratic ‘liturgies’ for various life stages, but does not really relate to the book’s main message. Regrettably there is no offer of an alternative to the standardised Christian views he is attempting to demolish. Perhaps an alternative spirituality will come to light in a future book.
This book is not a presentation of orthodox Christian beliefs, nor does it claim to be. Archbishop Jonathan Blake warns that we should perhaps stop reading if we are nervous of being challenged and changed. He draws the distinction between feeling and intellect, leading him to reject the Biblical God and supernatural events. Liberated he is then able to construct an understanding based on enlightenment, reason and science. However, in classic Archbishop Jonathan Blake style he shows the same scepticism for his liberal theology as he does the more conservative position he has rejected. Being perhaps a little mischievous he suggests that we should be in “awe and worship” of the modern day miracle of lunar landings, without reference to the fact many consider them to be a hoax. This book is characteristic of a cleric who does not tell us what to believe, but instead, like the apostle Paul, he invites us to work out our own salvation in fear and trembling.
WARNING ! ! ! If you're religious beliefs are built on a House of Cards, then I strongly suggest that you find yourself a lighter read because you are not ready for this book. However, if you ARE ready to challenge your paradigm, strap yourself in and prepare to find out what your beliefs are made of.
Dont give up on it, so many with be great critics and not really read it, it gives insight to struggles with in the 'church' system. do your self a favour take off ur religous hat wen u read it open ur eyes by taking off ur blinkers.