Friday, May 21, 2010

Want to Be a More Radical Christian? A Review of "Radical" by David Platt

I just went through David Platt's book, "Radical" in one wonderful sitting. I had first heard young Dr. Platt at the Together for the Gospel Conference back in April, 2010. I was very encouraged and challenged by his message, An Unadjusted Gospel in an Unreached World: Connecting Gospel Theology with Urgent Missiology This great book was more of the same. I hope I am able to similarly lead King of Grace Church in living radically for Christ and his gospel.

Rather than having me produce another review, take some time at Discerning Reader to read this review of "Radical" excerpted below:

Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream
Reviewed 04/28/2010 by John Bird.
Recommended. A clarion call to live radically for Jesus Christ. But if you read it, will you?
David Platt has a burden—a burden to see believers in America acting like New Testament Christians. But for the most part, he says we're not. Instead, we are pursuing the "American dream" rather than Jesus. Jesus told his disciples not to lay up treasures on earth. They were to take up their crosses. They were to live for others. They were to be willing to die for others. But we live for ourselves. We live for security, for comfort, for ease, for entertainment, and for retirement.
With the best of intentions, we have actually turned away from Jesus. We have in many areas blindly and unknowingly embraced values and ideas that are common in our culture but are antithetical to the gospel he taught.
And, according to Platt, it's not just individual Christians embracing flawed values. Churches in America spend billions of dollars to build extravagant kingdoms and then praise themselves for sending a few thousand dollars to missions, while millions around the world are starving to death without ever hearing the gospel. Platt calls this lack of concern for the poor a "blind spot" in American Christianity. And it's a blind spot that should concern us: "If our lives do not reflect radical compassion for the poor, there is reason to wonder if Christ is really in us at all."....
In the end, Platt challenges readers to the one-year "Radical Experiment." This experiment involves five components meant to "radically alter the remainder of your life." My excitement built as I drew nearer to the final chapter. I imagined being called to martyrdom. I was nervous. "Can I do this? What will it cost? What will my wife say?" But when I got there, it was anticlimactic. Platt doesn't ask me to die, or even to sell my house. What he does ask is easier, something I can actually do. But the question remains: "Will I?" And as I consider the challenge, I realize that, in this selfish culture, it is radical. Indeed, to live as Christ calls His disciples to live is, in any culture, radical.
Get it for yourself and become 'Radical'.

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