Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church by Michael Horton | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church

Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church

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by Michael Horton
     
 

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Is it possible that we have left Christ out of Christianity? Is the faith and practice of American Christians today more American than Christian? These are the provocative questions Michael Horton addresses in this well-received, insightful book. He argues that while we invoke the name of Christ, too often Christ and the Christ-centered gospel are pushed aside. The

Overview

Is it possible that we have left Christ out of Christianity? Is the faith and practice of American Christians today more American than Christian? These are the provocative questions Michael Horton addresses in this well-received, insightful book. He argues that while we invoke the name of Christ, too often Christ and the Christ-centered gospel are pushed aside. The result is a message and a faith that are, in Horton's words, "trivial, sentimental, affirming, and irrelevant." This alternative "gospel" is a message of moralism, personal comfort, self-help, self-improvement, and individualistic religion. It trivializes God, making him a means to our selfish ends. Horton skillfully diagnoses the problem and points to the solution: a return to the unadulterated gospel of salvation. Now available in trade paper.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

In another screed on what's wrong with American Christianity, theology professor Horton, of Westminster Seminary California, bemoans the slide of the American Christian church into what he, and others, call a moralistic, therapeutic deism. Drawing on studies, surveys and anecdotal evidence, Horton reaches the oft-repeated conclusion that American Christianity is self-centered rather than Christ-centered, Jesus is a life coach rather than a redeemer, and salvation is focused on therapeutic well-being. He rants against the purveyors of this watered-down Christianity-Robert Schuller, T.D. Jakes, Benny Hinn, Joyce Meyer-but saves his most savage attack for megachurch preacher Joel Osteen, whom Horton depicts as a snake-oil salesman teaching that God is a personal shopper ready to deliver happiness and prosperity if only individuals let God know their needs. Horton reveals his lack of theological depth when he argues that ancient Gnostics saw God as no different from humans. Yet Gnosticism's entire point is this difference. Horton regrettably offers no recommendation for the reformation of American Christianity beyond a simplistic call to let the church be defined by the Gospel rather than the laws of the market. (Nov.)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801072215
Publisher:
Baker Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/01/2012
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
757,429
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

Michael Horton (PhD, University of Coventry and Wycliffe Hall, Oxford) is J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology and Apologetics at Westminster Seminary California. He hosts The White Horse Inn radio broadcast and is editor-in-chief of Modern Reformation magazine. He is the author/editor of more than twenty books, including Christless Christianity, The Gospel-Driven Life, and The Gospel Commission.

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Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Mike_in_Seattle More than 1 year ago
I would encourage you to ignore the 'editorial' review. Michael Horton has clearly argued convincingly for the premise he makes regarding the problems in the American Church today. He has also touched on a concern I have had for a number of years while also showing me where my theology has fallen short of the truth of the gospel. Medicine is seldom pleasant tasting but usually necessary for a return to health.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Horton gets right to the point that way too much of church is about self-help moralism rather than the work of Christ. He drives it home in chapter after chapter. But the book lacks any more of an answer than go hear a good calvanist preacher, take communion and be baptized. After such a great start, I really wanted more. He rails on performance oriented Christianity, which needs to be challenged, but doesn't follow up with what to do with all of the admonitions in the New Testament.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Necessary reading.
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SamTekoa More than 1 year ago
Thomas Jefferson is criticized for cutting all the references to miracles out of his Bible. Horton attempts to a similar feat by demanding a Christianity that excludes any human active participation. This book is one confused polemic of poorly defined terms, grossly misapplied. He takes shots at many Christian groups by name calling and over generalizations. Yes, Christ saves us and that is foundational to Christianity. One example of his extremism - He condemns the classic hymn, "In The Garden", stating that being in a garden alone with God implies that person doesn't need the church. He is like a guy trying to do dental surgery with a sledge hammer and chisel. A very lazy thinker or one suffering from bi-polar disorder. Better to take a nap than read this book.