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Customer Reviews for Zondervan The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical

Zondervan The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical

During college, a professor remarked, "Being a Christian is about choosing Jesus and deciding to do something incredibly daring with your life." Taking up that challenge, Shane's faith led him to dress the wounds of lepers with Mother Teresa, visit families in Iraq amidst bombings, and dump $10,000 on Wall Street to redistribute wealth. In The Irresistible Revolution, you'll be challenged by a radical Christianity passionate for peace, social justice, and alleviating the suffering found in the local neighborhood and distant reaches of the world. Live out your faith with little acts of radical love as you join the movement of God's Spirit into a broken world.
Average Customer Rating:
4.44 out of 5
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Customer Reviews for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Review 1 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

"Passionate" isn't enough

Date:September 24, 2012
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LifeVerse
Gender:male
Quality: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Value: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
The word “revolution” would have you believe this book presents something new. But it’s the same old same old: turn Christianity from a faith centered on salvation and heaven to just another wing of liberal political activism. This is evident in the Foreword, where Wallis perpetuates a familiar liberal cliché when he praises the “new generation of Christians who want to live their faith in this world, not the next.” That is a false “either/or” that liberals have used to bash conservatives for fifty years. It’s not a matter of either this world OR the next, as you will find if you visit any evangelical church’s website and look at the various ministries they perform. Evangelicals regard the next world as a higher priority but keep plenty active in this world. For liberals, the afterlife is an afterthought, and it plays no role in their ideology.
Claiborne on the next page launches into the same harangue, “Christianity has offered little to the world, other than the hope that things will be better in heaven.” Does he know nothing of Christian history? Mission hospitals, abolishing slavery, monasteries and convents that ministered to the sick, the poor, orphans, the charities that always sprang up in the wake of any religious revival. And how little he seems aware of what conservative churches do today. Like so many in his age bracket, the world only began when he first came on the stage. Typical of the young, he can’t see past the end of his nose. Typical of the “emergents,” he defines himself not in relation to real evangelicals, who engage in a multitude of charitable ministries, but in relation to the old straw man, the evangelical who thinks only of heaven – never mind that none of us has ever MET that straw man.
He claims to be distancing himself not only from evangelicals but from “secular activism” as well. There’s no evidence of that in the book, except that, unlike the secular activist, he will tack on “I love Jesus” to whatever photo-op charity he is involved with at that moment. He claims that a college teacher told him, “Don’t let the world steal your soul,” and then goes on to try convince us he avoided that fate, but the faith he presents here is decidedly worldly. “I don’t really fit into the old conservative-liberal boxes.” In fact, on every issue, he is solidly liberal. He does, of course, embrace the “radical” title. We are back in the 1960s again, and the smirk of the “radical” opposing the “system” hasn’t changed one iota.
There is much self-congratulation here. An “all-night vigil and sleep-out” turns into a pizza party, yet somehow he recounts this as having some effect on the war in Afghanistan. (Burying a dead cat a midnight will rid you of warts too.) He and his fellow “radical” Christians believes everything they do is a blow against the big three sins – racism, militarism, and materialism. Frankly, for all his criticism of people conforming to the culture, these “radicals” look just like secular liberals. Like secular activists, they focus on poverty, war, and (the biggie) the environment. Having given up belief in an afterlife, the libs can’t help but focus on “sustainability.”
The Bible isn’t important to this writer (except any verses that happen to contain the word “poor”), and he states (as every “emergent” must, inevitably) that doctrines/beliefs just aren’t important for him. Well, of course not. Doctrines require thought, and his whole generation is oriented on feeling. (Yes, I know – feelings DO matter, but Christianity doesn’t require us to abandon thought.) Feeling, not thought, leads him to take the usual liberal positions on pacifism, capital punishment, etc.
“When people hear you wrote a book, they listen to what you have to say,” he says. Not necessarily. Some readers are savvy enough to know that there are plenty of books full of bad, unbiblical ideas. I don’t doubt that this author and his “radical” pals mean well, and maybe they really do feel their acts are Christian, but it is clear in this book that he has no respect at all for people who lived before him, no conception that there might actually be good in many traditions, no ability to learn from people with more experience of the world. His understanding of the Bible is shallow, to put it mildly, and he quotes it only to back up his pre-deteremined “radical” positions. His theology, if that is even the right word, is equally shallow. Like so many of the young, he thinks “passion” and good intentions are enough. Maybe in time he will mature.
+10points
12of 14voted this as helpful.
Review 2 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:May 18, 2010
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Ricky Pierce
I found this book to be very challenging to my discipleship. Made me realize that I'm not on a level of service or devotion to Christ that I should be.
-1point
2of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 3 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
1 out of 5
1 out of 5

Date:January 14, 2010
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Papa Giorgio
Half Star Too Many Says,One of the first things I did is stop at page 34 and go to his appendix and simply follow some of the links that the money from the sales of this book go to. What did I find? You can see what I found in more depth.I found a person beholden top anti-Christian Marxist ideals that connects the reader to some of the most atheistic/Marxist/Leninist sites imaginable... not to mention an extreme form of liberal Christianity. One can also find throughout this book by Shane Claiborne the following (keep in mind I could have been more exhaustive in my examples, but these should suffice):Shane is also very antithetical to police (p. 122), anti-military (pp. 95-96, 122-123), and teaches a "kingdom now theology" (pp. 62, 87), calls for overthrowing a particular social order using Marxist/Leninist speak (p. 129), and the like. Why this book is even considered in the panoply of Christian literature is beyond me. But I hope that others with discerning ears and eyes will put this book in its proper place by saying along with me that even half-a-star is too much. I recommend a book sold here at CBD to help the student work through some of these issues (not Shane's issues specifically), it is "Reclaiming the Center: Confronting Evangelical Accomodation in Postmodern Times"I will recommend CBD pick up Bob Dewaay's book, "The Emerging Church: Undefining Christianity." This topic will get more and more needed and CBD should be ahead of the curve.
-2points
10of 22voted this as helpful.
Review 4 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:May 18, 2009
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Christopher Moore
This is one of those rare books that peals away the scales from our eyes and lets us look again at what it really means to be a follower of Christ. This book is for all of us who have ever thought, there has to be more to Christianity than this.
-1point
3of 7voted this as helpful.
Review 5 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 18, 2009
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Jessica B.
I discovered this book last year when i was in college and as i began to read it i became so excited about what it was saying that i started telling many others that they HAD to read it- that it would change their way of thinking. When my friend Chris finished reading it- he left his well paying(yet unfulfilling)job in Ontario to come work with the homeless here in Calgary. After i finished the book i left my home in Nova Scotia to come work with the homeless here also. I then heard about a guy working within the same organization as me that was a very successful mechanic- left his job and came to work with the homeless because he read this book! It is starting a Revolution! And it is Irresistible to people! This is worth every penny that you spend on it- then you must pay it forward to someone else when you are done with it.
+2points
5of 8voted this as helpful.
Review 6 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 1, 2009
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Diane Morrisette
Im fourteen and i read this book and it has changed how i look at Jesus, the Bible and the world. I realize that we should take Jesus at his word and im trying to change my life so i can follow Him but its so hard because i dont have very much freedom and my parents arent Christians but i know that i have, even in this short time, made a huge change for the better. I want to life solely for god because his love is so amazing and its all i can do to try to love him back and do what he needs me to do. This is such a hard task i have in front of me but i know ,now, the power that god has and that he will always be with me.
0points
3of 6voted this as helpful.
Review 7 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:January 24, 2009
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Yann Schneider
This book is life changing. It shows the true colors of love, in all of it's beauty. It shows how we (every single one of us average people) can live fully committed to Christ. What Jesus gave is irresistible, the only reason people resist it is because we don't live it out as it is ourselves. This has changed my life, as a 16 year old I will make my whole life about giving love. If you want to taste what it means to live for real, read this book, you will smell it, and then, like me (a very ordinary guy) you will find yourself with nothing better to do but to leave everything and give chase to the irresistible revolution, to make it grow.
-2points
1of 4voted this as helpful.
Review 8 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:October 16, 2008
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Josh Spencer
This book is an absolute must read from any Christian standpoint- it boldly confronts the idea that being a Christian means also being a pro-gun, pro-war, affluent Caucasian. With radical ideas like the notion that Jesus actually meant what he said at the Sermon on the Mount, Shane challenges us to re-evaluate many of the reasons why we value our political backgrounds more than we do the commission of Christ.
-1point
2of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 9 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

Date:September 16, 2008
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Holly Savage
Mr. Claiborne's message is well-intentioned, but his interpretations of the Bible aren't always accurate. Take his stance as a pacifist, for example. This position would be viable if we lived in a world where freedom was free and Islamic terrorists weren't bent on our destruction. However, that is a fantasy world. In the real world, peace, true peace, is not the absence of war, but rather what happens when good triumphs over evil. And that is only one example where Shane's ministry is not biblical. I would advise to readers of this book to look up every scripture passage listed in the book to check the context. Moreover, I would suggest that, besides recognizing Mr. Claiborne's obvious good intentions and passion, try to affirm, based on the Bible, whether or not his methods are biblical and/or wise. After all, it may be compassionate to give pan handlers spare change, but, in the end, does it help anyone, or is it simply enabling? Of course it's the right thing to help someone who really needs help, but some really need tough love. Overall, this book is anti-American and seems to suggest that a life of prosperity is wrong and that all rich people are either greedy or suicidal. If you really want to read a life-changing book, why not just pick up a Bible?
+2points
8of 14voted this as helpful.
Review 10 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:August 24, 2008
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Vito Baldini
This book had me look at christianity in a new way. Shane's story is moiving and his quest for a real christian had me thinking about what we are doing.
+1point
3of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 11 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:July 25, 2008
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Greg Willis
This book is not for the timid! It raises fantastic questions every serious believer should address. It will cause to to examine the cultural form of Christianity the envelopes America. It may even inspire you to get off the couch! If you want to be challenged, this is your book. The author, unlike so many others, actually seems to take Jesus' words serious. I will definitely be reading it again.
0points
3of 6voted this as helpful.
Review 12 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:July 24, 2008
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Hannah
Jesus's work through Shane Clairborne and others at The Simple Way is unbelievably incredible. They do so much to help so many, and genuinely love the Lord so much. I find Shane's words inspiring and motivational. Reading this book makes me want to go out and feed the hungry, touch the sick, give the poor money, and show the world a better alternative to the bitter form of Christianity that's reared it's head in our culture...
0points
3of 6voted this as helpful.
Review 13 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:June 23, 2008
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Kristine Brisson
Amazing book! Although Shane hints at his hesitance to write a book, I am glad he did. This book is a wonderful testimony to the power of Christ even when things look impossible to change. Shane approaches the apathy of the North American church in a way that is gentle and yet to the point. I recommend this book to anyone who is willing to read it!
-1point
2of 5voted this as helpful.
Review 14 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:April 2, 2008
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Maria Marino
If you're ready to roll up your sleeves, and march in God's army, pick up a copy of The Irresistible Revolution and get ready to load up on some serious ammunition. And for good measure, you'll also get a fresh compass and a friend to help you dig out of the trenches and be counted as a radical who is courageous and foolish enough to stand out as a true follower of Christ. From the streets of Calcutta, to war-zones of Iraq, to neighbourhood slums, to money-multiplying Wall Street, Shane Claiborne transports the face of Christ into a suffering and lonely world. In Irresistible Revolution, he converts his stories into a compelling case for the "ordinary radical" . His down to earth style will engage you, much like a conversation with an old friend. But be prepared, much of what he has to say is far from comfortable. In these pages you will be dared to take up your cross, and tear down some walls. You will hear first hand of the miracle of community, of working together, being one body in Christ. You will be asked to drop the rock of unforgiveness and embrace the poor, the needy and the "ugly". And kiss complacency good-bye. Watch out for the gut-wrenching and heart-breaking moments laced in pain...and some joyful, triumphant ones. Watch how you never lose the distinct feeling that Jesus is right there walking through every page as you read along. You will sense his presence watching over you, holding out His hand, insisting, "Come follow me...come and see." Watch yourself capture a fresh and renewed understanding of who Jesus was and what He asks of you...and behold the absolute ironic beauty of a revolution (a heart revolv-ing around Him) that is truly irresistible.
-1point
1of 3voted this as helpful.
Review 15 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:March 28, 2008
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Matt Ritscher
Hello all, this book is amazing. I have wanted to live like this for many years but was afraid that it cannot be done in modern America. But now God is challenging me to actually live like Christ
-1point
1of 3voted this as helpful.
Review 16 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:February 25, 2008
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Teresa Auten
I have read and re-read this book several times and it had challenged and inspired me each time; Keep up the good work Shane!
-2points
1of 4voted this as helpful.
Review 17 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Date:January 4, 2008
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Kathy Smith
Good book ...some of the areas of service that Shane has experienced I don't think I could do! But good to be challenged with. I'm not totally convinced that war is not necessary having been reminded on Veteran's Day about the sacrifices made by Canadian's so we can live in a free world. I have passed this book onto several others in my church and we will see what kind of impact it makes there.
0points
1of 2voted this as helpful.
Review 18 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 28, 2007
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Joel Fredrikson
I graduated from college with a major in Theology and Philosophy, and I am now a seminary student. I have read many great books both inside and outside of my classes, but this one stands out as one of the most compelling works of Christian literature that I have ever read. It re-opened my eyes and ears to the gospel message and gave me a greater understanding of the significance of living as a disciple of Jesus Christ today, in the present. God is using Shane to transform the minds of Christians like you and me to make a difference in the world by bringing light where there is only darkness, or in Shane's words, "practicing resurrection." This book made a profound impact on my life with God and with others, and I am certain that it will challenge anyone else who reads it as well. Highly recommended!
-1point
0of 1voted this as helpful.
Review 19 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 9, 2007
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Grady O'Neil
Extremely well written, thoughtful, thought-provoking and truly written from a positive, heartfelt place. Something everyone in the contemporary Christian world should read!
-1point
0of 1voted this as helpful.
Review 20 for The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Date:December 8, 2007
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Johan Engh
This is a "must read". One of the must uncomfortable but also inspiring and challenging books I've ever read. I must warn you: reading this book may change your way of relating to money, possessions and most of all to the poor.
-1point
0of 1voted this as helpful.
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