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Zondervan The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook

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Customer Reviews for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Review 1 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Valuable Read

Date:February 18, 2014
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PastorJeff
Location:Culpeper, VA
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
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4 out of 5
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4 out of 5
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Scot McKnight brings fresh breeze into the discussion of The Gospel of Jesus Christ. What is the Gospel? Surely every Pastor and Sunday School teacher must have this basic question down to the black and white and surely every Christian has no problem articulating The Gospel to others...right? Admittedly one of those who honestly struggles with interpreting the proper balance of scripture in this area, I found Scot's work to produce the hooks and footholds to facilitate a new and helpful discernment.
The work is certainly "safe" for those who might be concerned of an author departing from the Word. McKnight doesn't reject what he sees as the prevailing evangelical ideas on salvation, what he argues is that The Gospel of Jesus Christ (as clearly established in scripture) is so much more.
Building on others, like NT Wright & Dallas Willard, Scot McKnight wrestles with our crystallized doctrines of salvation and wonders if modern Christianity (that developed during the pendulum swing of the Reformation) hasn’t taken the Gospel of Jesus Christ and stripped it of its full meaning. That instead of the fullness of the Gospel as represented by Jesus Christ in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John; expounded by Paul and Peter; and repeated in sermons in the book of Acts which reflect the full meaning of the story of Jesus who fulfills, completes, and resolves Israel’s story – McKnight argues we find many have allowed the definition of the Gospel, "to collapse into abstract doctrines that reduce all that God has said and done into a carefully packaged plan of salvation."
The concern is that we unwittingly stripped the Gospel of its full meaning when, in an attempt to correct the errors of the church that existed prior to the reformation (salvation concerns of works), we’ve too often boiled it down to nothing more than a doctrine of salvation - to suggest that the Gospel is nothing more than an individual plan of Salvation. “Sin management.”
• Individual (as opposed to corporate)
• Decisions (as opposed to discipleship)
• Sin management mentality – ticket punched: leaving many to wonder if they even need the bible to walk rightly.
Scot has got my attention: the Gospel is, in truth, much more than my personal plan of sin management. McKnight puts it like this:
• The Gospel is God’s explanation of the intended life through the biblical accounts of the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. It is the revealed interpretation of the life He intends for the Imagebearer.
• We must know this Gospel if we hope to possess and share a true Gospel culture – [and it’s that Gospel culture that's glimpsed in the book of Acts as anointed by the Holy Spirit and bringing thousands into Christ on a daily basis.
One of the errors of our day is our tendency to minimize the story – to reduce the gospel message to napkin or a note card. ("A minute to win it?")
McKnight issues the call to return to be the people of the Word – to know the Word from Genesis to Revelation; to ponder the depths of the contours in the story of God as revealed in the bible – to listen to His Holy Word – to Listen to Him speak to us - to see the Messiah in His proper context and then can we hope to truly reflect His light and bear His image.
That will preach, as they say. And hopefully, by focusing on the revealed life and words of Christ as interpreted through scripture, we'll find more and more decision makers able to apprehend who God is and how best to respond to Him.
Wish it was in paperback so we could share it more readily in the prisons.
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Review 2 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

An Interesting Take on What The Gospel Is

Date:March 19, 2013
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oldmanchubb
Age:25-34
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
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This book, like many others by McKnight, has caused a bit of a stir – you can see the mixed reactions below. Even those who do not agree with McKnight should be able to credit his writing style as well his passion for asking important questions.
The main question he so eloquently asks throughout this book is “What is the Gospel”? Most Evangelical Christians would say something about being saved from our sins by the death of Jesus. While McKnight agrees that Jesus does save us from our sins, he doesn’t see this as the Gospel. His point is that we have created a salvation culture, but not so much a Gospel culture. He sets out to explain what he sees as the Gospel – which is essentially Jesus Christ being the fulfillment of Israel. So on some level, this book serves as an easily accessible monograph on what the word “Gospel” means.
I really enjoyed this book – it is incredibly well-written and well-footnoted (I wrote down a few new books I want to check out). McKnight, as he usually does, is gentle with those he disagrees with. Since he is presenting a fairly novel idea for most of us (though he does fully document the Biblical and historical reasons of those who agree with him), I think this book would make for an excellent discussion in some sort of group setting. Thus, I wish he would have added a fourth Appendix with a discussion guide – however I also realize this might be nit-picking. I think it will take some time for me to think through the issues he brings up but I know that even though I might disagree with some of his conclusions, he nonetheless is an incredibly important voice in discerning what it means to be an effective Christian and how to be an effective witness to culture in our day.
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Review 3 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

Sliding to the left

Date:December 18, 2012
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Skotiad
Gender:male
Quality: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
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1 out of 5
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Reading this book made me think of my late grandfather, who had, around age 30, “got saved” at a revival meeting. According to my grandmother, he attended church a few times, dropped out, and spent the rest of his life acting extremely Unsaved. My grandmother still wonders if he is in heaven, as does everyone who knew him. “Once saved, always saved” is the familiar phrase, but even people who believe that will admit that in some cases “getting saved” was illusory.
So, in light of all that, I was prepared to give this book a fair hearing. I agree that the “getting saved” mentality can lead a person to a false sense of security, as it can lead people to define “Christian” as “someone who gets saved.” But just because something is abused doesn’t mean it ought to be discarded. The author of this book assures readers (too often, frankly) that he still believes that “decisions for Christ” are important. But the upshot of his book is that “decision evangelism” is an embarrassment for modern Christians and ought to be moved to the back burner (or shoved off the stove). We live in a culture increasingly hostile to Christianity, especially in its traditional form, and we absorb some of that culture, so that many pastors no longer talk about evangelism or witnessing to one’s faith – which means that they give up trying to please God in favor of “What will my non-Christian friends think?”
As I read the book, I kept recalling Paul’s wonderful phrase: “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, it is the power of God that brings salvation” (Rom 1:16). Paul was not a suburban pastor or seminary professor ensconced in a cozy three-bedroom, two-bath house with an Acura in the garage, he was “out there,” getting beaten, stoned, shipwrecked, mocked, slandered, which definitely proved that “I am not ashamed” was no idle boast. Scot McKnight is no Paul, and neither are the vast majority of pastors, even those who hold (very loosely, and with embarrassment) to the name “evangelical.” Knowing that their own preaching is essentially just warmed-over Norman Vincent Peale positive thinking fluff (or the “God wants you to vote Democratic and march in gay pride parades” preached by liberals), these comfortable, world-conforming pastors try to excuse their lack of zeal by proving that the “real” gospel and the “real” Jesus weren’t decision-centered. The author tries to prove that the cool people like himself are part of the “gospel culture” instead of the “salvation culture” of those dumb, unsophisticated evangelicals. He is correct that a lot of “saved” people don’t ever grow into mature disciples who live out their faith. But in trying to prove that the “gospel culture” is better than “salvation culture,” he is simply approving of Christians who do not evangelize or verbally witness to their faith in the hope that friends and family members will become Christians – in other words, Christians so intimidated by the secular culture that their “witness” takes the form of something insipid and nonthreatening like “You might like our church, we have a really cool music program, and our pastor is a fun guy.”
Yes, we ought to ACT like Christians, because that is an indispensible part of our witness. The “salvation culture” has never denied that. But there is a flaw in “evangelism by example” – people may not know just what we are an example of. And aside from that, there is no getting around the Book of Acts: It all starts at Pentecost: “Repent, and be saved” – yeah, you, the individual there – accept Christ. That’s Christian Life, Part 1. We get Part 2 in Paul’s letters, addressed to people who made the decision but are still flawed sinners who need Paul’s guidance in growing in the faith. But they had to do Part 1 first. No evangelism, no church. The church didn’t spread, in Acts, because the apostles ran around bragging about their music program or about how witty the pastor was, nor did they assure their audiences that “all roads lead to God, so one religion is as good as another – we don’t judge.” Peter and Paul are a tough act to follow, but that’s the reason the pastorate is not for softies – come to think of it, that’s true for the laity too. If we stripped the church down to the true believers – something God will do, at the end – we would have a much smaller but infinitely more vibrant mission force. After all, it started with just twelve guys, but it’s amazing how bold people are when they’re not ashamed of what they preach. That certainly isn’t true of the vast majority of pastors and seminary professors.
So, despite its good points, this book falls into that growing category of books: “How to Be an Evangelical and Make Your Unbelieving Friends Think You’re OK.” Or maybe
+1point
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Review 4 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

This book is a MUST Read!

Date:May 18, 2012
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Anonymous
Location:Mooresville, IN
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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I canont stress enough that this is a MUST READ book. It's easy to follow and is foundational in it's teaching. It's a call to getting back to true discipling.
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Review 5 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Author points us back to story of Israel completed

Date:May 4, 2012
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Colin
Location:Boston, MA
Age:55-65
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4 out of 5
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Focuses our attention to what his word teaches us about Israel and God's plan for them completed in Jesus, the King, and witnessed by the apostles who taught the same.
-2points
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Review 6 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

the biblical "gospel"

Date:April 18, 2012
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mojo
Location:Texas
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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Sometime back I had this issue, the bible says that Jesus "preached the gospel" and that the disciples "preached the gospel," but it never spelled out exactly what they were saying. And for sometime the modern church in America has over laid that word "gospel" with soteriology. In other words, we say that the "gospel" is about the saving grace of the cross. But while the gospel (euangelion) contains the work of the cross, that is not all that it is. You can not define the gospel simply by explaining the cross. For the simple explanation that ... the cross had not happened when Jesus and his disciples were preaching.
Jesus did not preach, "believe that I will die on the cross and resurrect for your sins." That could not have been the "gospel" that he preached. And yet, if you ask a Christian today what the gospel is, you will hear some rendition of the atonement of the cross.
Now, I have no problem with saying that the cross is good news or that salvation is now apart of the modern telling of the gospel. But before we get to modernity, I think we should understand WHY the story of Jesus is good news.
Today, people can explain salvation and the cross without ever once mentioning the Old Testament. We ask the new to the faith to "confess Christ as Lord," without ever telling them what that means or why it's important.
Scot McKnight in his new book The King Jesus Gospel writes, "one reason why so many Christians today don't know the Old Testament is because their gospel doesn't even need it." but "the gospel of the New Testament cannot be reduced to the plan of salvation."
Scot McKnight is the Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies at North Park University. He is the author of The Jesus Creed which won the Christianity Today book award for 2004 in the area of Christian living. McKnight's blog, Jesus Creed, has been a popular site for Evangelicals to discuss various theologies.
His new book seeks to unlock the BIG QUESTION: what is the gospel? Scot believes that Christianity is stuck in a salvation culture, but that we need to transition and find our true home in a "gospel culture."
McKnight is a smart writer who writes a great book. This book is for anyone seeking to re-learn the biblical concept of gospel and for anyone who wants to communicate a full gospel story to the world. Highly recommended.
Thanks to Zondervan for sending me the above mentioned product for review purposes. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.
-2points
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Review 7 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

great book!!

Date:February 1, 2012
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Shawn
Location:Kelso, WA
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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3 out of 5
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The book helps me to understand where Evangelicalism is today and where it can improve. The church has a "join the now saved club" attitude but is very lazy in building disciples.
I had a hard time with the download, I didn't want to use the e-reader they offered through Adobe but ended up with it, now I have another reader I don't need. I can't transfer the book to another reader.
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Review 8 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:November 7, 2011
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DanielDK
Location:Asia
Age:45-54
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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Working in the mission field, I was able to reflect the gospel which American Christianity has been exporting to the world. It was Conversionistic Gospel, emphasizing on making a person to be a convert. Jesus never commanded to make converts of all nations, but to make disciples. The biblical gospel is Disciplistic Gospel. Dr. McKnight is right on target that the biblical gospel is different from the popular gospel in America which emphasizes the salvation.
Great Book!
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Review 9 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Personal Salvation or Preaching the Gospel?

Date:October 10, 2011
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Pastor Dan
Location:Wichita, KS
Age:55-65
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
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In this new book from Scot McKnight he tackles his belief that the modern church has gone on to loose the Gospel Message by going off 'mission' and just focusing on "Personal Salvation." He has a good point. For many people the idea of the Gospel is to lead people to salvation. But then what? They often times just stop there, excited that another soul has been added to The Kingdom. But where is the follow up? Where does discipleship come in to play? What really is the Great Commission? Is it to lead people to personal salvation or is it to teach people to obey 'all' that I have commanded?
I think that McKnight does a good job of hitting on the point that he is trying to drive home. His chart on page 30 sums it up well;
The Members The Decided The Discipled
Where do you fit? What do you think the Gospel pushes? Is the church only about community / membership or does it go beyond that to include leading people to Christ, personal salvation, in other words The Decided. It is McKnights contention that the modern church gets people to be part of the Decided group but then doesn't bother with helping them to become The Discipled.
The Gospel is about the story of Jesus Christ! It is about why the Son of God had to come to earth and take on the form of man and die on a cross and then be resurrected from the dead. It is about atonement, sacrifice, obedience, etc. etc. etc.
Don't let your Gospel message just be, "Everyone needs to hear about Salvation." Make sure your Gospel message is the true message of the Bible, God's word, God's desire. Make sure it includes 'teaching them to obey all that I have commanded.'
There is quite a bit more that McKnight touches on, but this is the basic premise. Be sure the Gospel Message you preach goes beyond Personal Salvation to include discipleship.
Enjoy!
-1point
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Review 10 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Good Premise

Date:October 7, 2011
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jrick
Location:Dallas, TX
Age:45-54
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2 out of 5
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Author starts with a solid premise, however, repeating that premise over and over and over and over makes for many boring moments. Book takes way too long to actually prove his point, too much time spent trying to demonstrate what others think and why it is wrong.
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Review 11 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Thought provoking and confusing.

Date:September 27, 2011
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Chris Land
Location:Wichita Falls, Tx
Age:25-34
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3 out of 5
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This book is a very thought provoking book on the gospel. Many churches today do not have a grasp on the gospel because we have a very narrow-minded view of the gospel. McKnight thinks that the gospel has been hijacked, which is partially true because the Prosperity Gospel and Liberal Christianity.
As I am reading this book, it seems that McKnight takes a swing at Calvinists, John Piper for example, to show who would disagree with his views. Also he seem to have a tendency to separate salvation from the gospel, which is did not make sense because Romans 1:16 tells us the gospel is the power of salvation for all who believe. Granted the gospel is not a plan of salvation, but it if you try to separate salvation from the gospel, all you get is a motivational story.
This book sounded great when I agreed to review it, but it can lead to confusion. I do not think McKnight was intending to be confusing, but that is the way the book turned out. He does have some good points, but somewhere in the middle, I felt he was chasing rabbits more than writing a book about the gospel.
+1point
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Review 12 for The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited - eBook
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

An over-correction

Date:September 20, 2011
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Grex77
Location:Hoschton, GA
Age:25-34
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Quality: 
3 out of 5
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Scot McKnight's The King Jesus Gospel is one of those rare books where it's impossible to remain on the sidelines. What McKnight is proposing in this little book is that evangelicals have, for a long time, gotten the gospel wrong. Such an accusation must be considered and engaged, and it requires a response.
There was much I liked and agreed with in McKnight's analysis of the situation. He is right that Christians in the West often reduce the gospel to a plan of salvation pitch. He's also right that Jesus and the apostles preached Jesus as the gospel, rather than succumbing to a personal-need oriented appeal. McKnight rightly shows how the full, biblical gospel is the story of Israel culminating in the life, ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus, and then carrying on in the New Testament church. Very few engaged and thinking Christians will disagree with McKnight here, but he seems to exaggerate the real state of things. As I read, I kept thinking to myself, "Who are these people that would take issue with a gospel that can be traced from Genesis to Revelation? I'm sure they exist, but they can hardly be taken seriously."
I do take issue, however, with the trajectory of The King Jesus Gospel. In my opinion, it pushes justification by faith alone to the outskirts of the biblical gospel. It's still there in the scenery to be sure, but it's no longer central and it's no longer the doctrine on which the church stands or falls, to paraphrase Luther. Ironically, the very camp that would most agree with McKnight with regard to preaching a fuller, more biblical gospel - those who stand under the shadow of the Reformers - are the very ones he blames for reducing the gospel to a plan of personal salvation. He writes, "The Reformation did not deny the gospel story and it did not deny the creeds. Instead, it put everything into a new order and into a new place. Time and developments have somehow eroded the much more balanced combination of gospel culture and salvation culture in the Reformation to where today salvation culture has eclipsed the gospel culture" (72).
McKnight leans heavily on 1 Corinthians 15:3-5 as an early Christian creed and examines the other gospel summaries and sermons recorded in Scripture. No one will deny that these creeds and statements consist of factual summaries about Christ and his ministry, but that doesn't mean that deeper theology is unimportant. All of Scripture is God-breathed, and so to minimize certain parts (most of Romans and Galatians) in order to purify the early gospel is misguided. Certainly, evangelistic sermons are not normally going to delve into the inner-workings of monergistic salvation, but that doesn't mean they stand on the sidelines in our understanding of the gospel. In the end, I simply couldn't figure out how McKnight could read John or Romans or Galatians faithfully and not see justification by faith alone all over the place. There's much to commend in The King Jesus Gospel, but McKnight seems to over-correct a personal-decision-driven gospel by pushing a story-based gospel that requires no decision and no understanding of our standing before God as helpless sinners dead in our sins. The biblical gospel accounts aren't like that. Decisions are required all over the place.
+3points
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