Jesus > Religion: Why He is So Much Better Than Trying Harder, Doing More and Being Good Enough

( 27 )

Overview

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Abandon dead, dry, rule-keeping and embrace the promise of being truly known and deeply loved.

Jefferson
Bethke burst into the cultural conversation in 2012 with a passionate,
provocative poem titled “Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus.” The 4-minute video literally became an overnight sensation, with 7 million ...

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Jesus > Religion: Why He Is So Much Better Than Trying Harder, Doing More, and Being Good Enough

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Overview

A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

Abandon dead, dry, rule-keeping and embrace the promise of being truly known and deeply loved.

Jefferson
Bethke burst into the cultural conversation in 2012 with a passionate,
provocative poem titled “Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus.” The 4-minute video literally became an overnight sensation, with 7 million YouTube views in its first 48 hours (and 23+ million in a year). The message blew up on social-media, triggering an avalanche of responses running the gamut from encouraged to enraged.

In Jesus > Religion, Bethke unpacks similar contrasts that he drew in the poem—highlighting the difference between teeth gritting and grace, law and love, performance and peace, despair and hope. With refreshing candor he delves into the motivation behind his message, beginning with the unvarnished tale of his own plunge from the pinnacle of a works-based,
fake-smile existence that sapped his strength and led him down a path of destructive behavior.

Bethke is quick to acknowledge that he’s not a pastor or theologian, but simply a regular, twenty-something who cried out for a life greater than the one for which he had settled. Along his journey, Bethke discovered the real Jesus, who beckoned him beyond the props of false religion.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

A year ago, young Christian evangelist Jefferson Bethke released a subtly rhymed video entitled "Why I Hate Religion, But Love Jesus," which has galvanized the attention of a wide audience. (At this writing, it has notched more than 24.5 million hits.) His Jesus > Religion extends and details that 4-minute message to a more fitting length. While emphasizing that he is neither pastor nor theologian, he shares his message of a deeper Christianity that is based on Christ's truly life-changing core imperatives.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781400205394
  • Publisher: Nelson, Thomas, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/7/2013
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 24,661
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.30 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Jefferson Bethke has a compelling story of overcoming a painful childhood of poverty and a broken home, and this gives him a unique perspective on the grace of God and the work of Jesus in his life and the lives of others. It’s this perspective that has catapulted him into the national conversation regarding religion and spirituality, allowing his message to connect at a heart level with an audience ranging from atheists to nationally recognized religious leaders.

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Read an Excerpt

JESUS>RELIGION

WHY HE IS SO MUCH BETTER THAN TRYING HARDER, DOING MORE, AND BEING GOOD ENOUGH


By JEFFERSON BETHKE

Thomas Nelson

Copyright © 2013 Jefferson Bethke
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4002-0539-4



CHAPTER 1

WILL THE REAL JESUS PLEASE STAND UP?


What do you believe?

No, really. What do you really believe? I'm not talking about what you put on your Facebook profile or what box you check on an application. What do you put your faith in? What drives you? What's your identity? I'm sure we all have some canned answers to those questions, but when it gets down to it, we know that's a load of crap.

If you are anything like me, you probably grew up thinking there was a God—whatever that means, right? Soon enough reality started to clash with this idea, and the idea of a real God seemed to become more distant. I still held on to the Christian tagline simply for identity purposes, but once I got to high school, it all seemed pretty ridiculous. There really was no need for him. Sure I could still call myself a Christian, but only when it seemed to benefit me. Other than that, I didn't want him anymore.

My true religion, as it is with most of my American peers, was the religion of moralism dressed in Christian clothes. I believed there was a god out there somewhere, that he wants us to be good kids, and that if we are, he tells us how much he loves us, puts our pictures on the fridge, and gives us a trophy—because everyone's a winner, right?

I was a Christian by default. Everyone else said they were Christians; my mom took me to church; there was a Bible in the house. So I thought all that made me a Christian too. Saying I was a Christian seemed to get me further with my friends, family, and society than saying I was not. Being a Christian made life easier for me. But I didn't actually love or serve Jesus.

Isn't that the story for many of us in America? Christianity is our default setting. We say we're Christians because it seems nice, makes us look moral, keeps the parents off our backs, and keeps us out of hell—that is, if we even believe in hell.

My mom and I went to church enough to know the rituals and songs, but I never felt like a "church kid." I heard enough sermons to know Jesus died for me, but I also had such a broken and painful life that I figured Jesus wasn't relevant. My parents never got married, so I grew up with just my mom. She is an amazing woman who did everything in her power to give me every opportunity possible. However, a physical handicap and mental struggles made it so she was unable to work very often. This meant Section Eight housing, welfare, social security, and food stamps. We moved around a lot—I went to eight schools from kindergarten through high school—and didn't live in the nicest areas.

I remember going to church and enjoying the games, the felt board, and the songs; but it always felt so disconnected. All the other kids seemed to have it together, and I never felt completely comfortable in that crowd. So I decided to fake it. I figured that if I could out-good the good kids, then I'd fit in. If little Johnny got a gold star, then I'd make sure to get a platinum one.

I became prideful and religious. This attitude festered and solidified itself in me all the way into my teenage years. When I got to high school, I thought I was good because I didn't smoke, drink, or have sex. I constantly thought I was better than all those people. I had just enough church to think that I could be good enough for God. I had just enough Jesus not to need him at all.

The funny part is that—even though I thought I was—I really wasn't a good kid. Starting in middle school, I was a troublemaker. I had a careless attitude toward school, my mom, and my life. I had bad grades, got kicked out of school for fighting and stealing, and developed a porn addiction that lasted more than eight years.

High school began, and things only got worse. I didn't even attempt to turn in any of my assignments, and so I flunked out my freshman year. I went to school just to keep in touch with friends and talk to girls. My mom knew my friends weren't good influences, and so we moved—again—to another town about thirty minutes away.

To some degree this was an awesome fresh start. I immediately got plugged in with the "good" kids who didn't party or drink, and I loved them. I also loved baseball and made it onto the school team. My life was baseball and my friends—it was looking good.

Then, my junior year of high school, my mom told me what was devastating news at the time. She came into my room, sat me down, and told me she was gay. She went on to include that she had fought it all her life and that the woman whom she had invited to live with us months earlier under the pretense that she was just a friend who needed help was actually her partner. (She fessed up after a fight between them.)

I felt betrayed by my mom, embarrassed for not figuring out why another woman lived in our house, and ashamed that my mom was gay. What would my friends think? My attitude was so self-centered back then. All I could think about was myself. I was a good Christian kid, so I couldn't have a gay mom, right?

After that, my mom threw in the towel on the traditional Christian faith. The treatment of gays by conservative Christians finally got to her. My initial thought was, Well, if Jesus didn't work for her, why would he work for me? So I gave up on God too. I was in pain. I was lonely. I wanted to escape but couldn't. I went from religion to rebellion. I figured if it felt good, I should do it. I worshiped girls, relationships, and my reputation. If getting more girls and drinking more beer meant I'd be "cool," then why not? But I soon discovered that lifestyle was like drinking saltwater. If you are extremely thirsty, you'll settle for it, but it just makes you thirstier. Every girl eventually became tiresome, and it was on to the next one.

On top of all this, I began to resent my mom. I despised her. Bitterness grew heavy. We lived in the same house but rarely spoke. I partied even harder and cared even less. I stopped looking for the right girl and started looking for an easy girl. I had the world's idea of pleasure at my fingertips, but something deep inside kept gnawing at me. Most of the time I was going too fast to notice it. It was only those few minutes before I'd fall asleep at night that my soul would be quiet enough to tell me what I was doing wasn't working.

I hear a lot of people say that the fear of death and the fear of public speaking are two of the main fears in my generation, but I disagree. I think it's the fear of silence. We refuse to turn off our computers, turn off our phones, log off Facebook, and just sit in silence, because in those moments we might actually have to face up to who we really are. We fear silence like it's an invisible monster, gnawing at us, ripping us open, and showing us our dissatisfaction. Silence is terrifying.

Then I graduated, had a fun summer, and headed off to a Christian college. In San Diego. Completely on my own. I didn't go because the school was Christian. I went because they had an awesome baseball team and a beautiful field. The campus—and baseball field—is literally on the beach; you can almost hit a home run into the water. It's no surprise that within the first semester, I got put on academic probation, cut from the baseball team, and dumped by my first serious girlfriend. Because baseball and girls were my life, I felt I had lost everything important. It was devastating, and for the first time in my life, I wasn't "good enough." I was broken.

Initially I blamed God for the pain in my life, but slowly I started to hear the whisper of his grace. I didn't know it then, but God broke me to fix me because he loved me. Author C. S. Lewis said, "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: It is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world."

Because of this, I was finally ready to listen. It was a messy process, however.

Looking back, I can't pinpoint one day when it all seemed to click. It was more like a period of three to four months when I stood at arm's length with Jesus. I really had nothing to lose, but this whole grace thing didn't make much sense to me. My mom said I was the annoying kid who always asked "why" after everything. (I pray to Jesus this particular character trait doesn't get passed down to my future kids.) I am still like that to this day, and it played out when I finally started to get drawn in by grace. I had to investigate. I had to have the answers. I had to know if grace was real.

I still remember going to the college library one day and asking how many books a student could check out at one time. The answer was fifteen, so I went back to my dorm room with fifteen books on Jesus, Christianity, and apologetics. Through some of those authors, God's grace slowly melted the crust off my heart. I started to see an enormous difference in the Christianity I thought I knew and the Christianity proclaimed in the New Testament. I finally started to see:

The Bible isn't a rule book. It's a love letter. I'm not an employee. I'm a child. It's not about my performance. It's about Jesus' performance for me.


Grace isn't there for some future me but for the real me. The me who struggled. The me who was messy. The me who was addicted to porn. The me who didn't have all the answers. The me who was insecure. He loved me in my mess; he was not waiting until I cleaned myself up. That truth changed my life, and I'm convinced it can change yours.


FINDING THE REAL JESUS

After my head-on collision with grace, I couldn't get enough of Jesus. It wasn't that everything difficult disappeared, but I now felt an anchor amid the pain. Being a new Christian, however, I didn't know what to do, how to act, what Bible studies to go to, or what CDs to listen to. I had a lot of friends, but not many of them were Christians. The first six months of my new life with Jesus, I was alone and guessing how to "do" the Christian faith. I spent a lot of nights in my dorm room reading my Bible—which was better than going out and partying like I did the semester before.

Though I didn't have many Christian friends, I was at a Christian university. So I decided to copy what "being a Christian" was all about by watching others. I took off my earrings, stopped wearing basketball jerseys, tried my hardest to memorize Hillsong United's greatest hits, and listened to the Christian radio station. I thought that if I did enough Christian things, it would bring peace to my life. It didn't work.

Six months in, I had done everything I thought I should be doing as a Christian, but I still had desires I thought were supposed to disappear—lust, pride, and pleasure. Wasn't Jesus supposed to make my life better? I had been duped. My "Christianity" was once again just the American religion of work hard, do good, feel good, and maybe God will say, "We good."

I realized I was following the wrong Jesus—not that there is a "wrong" Jesus—but I was following a fake version of the real one. This realization came to me as I listened to a Christian radio station one day. During a commercial break, they did a fifteen-second spot about the station that consisted of kids laughing, happy music, and the slogan, "Music you can trust, because it's safe for the whole family!"

I remember thinking, Safe for the whole family? Is Jesus really safe for the whole family?

I realized we had created a Jesus who's safe for the whole family. But if we were honest, we'd ask, how is a homeless dude who was murdered on a cross for saying he was God safe for the whole family? Not to mention that Paul told us if we choose to follow his example as a follower of Jesus, we will be treated the way that he was.

We've lost the real Jesus—or at least exchanged him for a newer, safer, sanitized, ineffectual one. We've created a Christian subculture that comes with its own set of customs, rules, rituals, paradigms, and products that are nowhere near the rugged, revolutionary faith of biblical Christianity. In our subculture Jesus would have never been crucified—he's too nice.

We claim Jesus is our homeboy, but sometimes we look more like the people Jesus railed against. The same scathing indictments Jesus brought against the religious leaders of his day—the scribes and Pharisees—he could bring down on many of America's Christian leaders. No wonder the world hates us. Most of the time we're persecuted not because we love Jesus, but because we're prideful, arrogant jerks who don't love the real Jesus. We're often judgmental, hypocritical, and legalistic while claiming to follow a Jesus who is forgiving, authentic, and loving.

Sometimes people will hate us because we preach the same gospel Jesus preached, and sometimes people will hate us because we're jerks. Let's not do the second one and blame it on the first. If we honestly reflected on Scripture and the state of American Christianity today, we'd be hard-pressed to say we haven't exchanged the real Jesus for one of our own invention.

God didn't create us to work at the food bank once a year and feel good about ourselves. He didn't create us to say looking at porn only once a month is a victory. He didn't create us to walk by a homeless guy begging for money and think, He'll probably just buy some beer. God didn't create us to come to him only when we need him—like he's our eternal dentist or something.

The Jesus of the Bible is a radical man with a radical message, changing people's lives in a radical way. In the Scriptures, Jesus isn't safe. No one knew what to do with him. The liberals called him too conservative, and the conservatives called him too liberal. I mean, think about it: His first miracle was turning water into wine. He made a whip of leather and went UFC on people who'd pimped out his father's temple. He completely disregarded any social, gender, or racial boundary his society imposed. He called himself the Son of God. He called himself the judge over everyone, determining who goes to heaven and hell. He said things like, "Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you." That's dangerous—and weird.

I don't care what church you grew up in, that sounds less like the Jesus we think we know and more like Hannibal Lecter. Jesus also forgives sins, which is dangerous because only God can forgive sins, yet the religious people claimed Jesus was just a man.

But we don't like a dangerous Jesus because a dangerous Jesus isn't a profitable Jesus. So, we've made a safe Jesus:

We don't celebrate the gift of Jesus on Christmas. We celebrate the gifts we get. We don't celebrate his triumphant resurrection and victory over Satan, sin, and death on Easter. We talk about the brunch. We don't call Jesus God. We call him good. We don't tell people they're sinners in need of a savior, because they might stop coming—and giving—to church.


In many ways, Christianity has become all about those green pieces of paper with dead presidents on them. In 2010 Americans spent a little over $135 billion on Christmas and another $13 billion on Easter. Who would have thought a little baby born in a filthy animal barn some two thousand years ago would be such a great excuse to feed our material addictions?

We have branded Jesus beyond recognition. Church has become a business. Jesus is our marketing scheme. We create bookstores, T-shirts, bracelets, bumper stickers, and board games all in the name of Jesus. In 2007 some woman even made national news for selling a pancake with Jesus' face on it on eBay.

Now don't get me wrong. There's a degree to which that stuff is okay. I mean, chances are you bought the book you're reading right now. I know I buy my fair share of Christian books—in fact, my wife says I buy too many, and I'm going to make us broke. But questions continue coming back to me: Are we really getting it? Have we made that stuff more important than Jesus? How come American Christianity is so different from the Bible's vibrant, uncontrollable, and unpredictable Christianity?
(Continues...)


Excerpted from JESUS>RELIGION by JEFFERSON BETHKE. Copyright © 2013 Jefferson Bethke. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Author's Note....................     xi     

Foreword....................     xiii     

Introduction: Why I Hate Religion but Love Jesus....................     xv     

1. Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up?....................     1     

2. Why I Still Think Jesus Hates Religion (and You Should Too).............     21     

3. Fundies, Fakes, and Other So-Called Christians....................     37     

4. Religion Makes Enemies / Jesus Makes Friends....................     59     

5. With Religion, There Are Good and Bad People / With Jesus, There Are
Only Bad People in Need of Grace....................     75     

6. Religion Is the Means to Get Things from God / If We Seek Jesus, We Get
God....................     93     

7. With Religion, If You Are Suffering, God Is Punishing You / God Already
Punished Jesus on Your Behalf, So Suffering Is His Mercy...................     113     

8. Religion Says, "God Will Love You If ..." / Jesus Says, "God So Loved
..."....................     131     

9. Religion Points to a Dim Future / Jesus Points to a Bright Future.......     155     

10. Why Jesus Loves the Church (and You Should Too)....................     181     

Conclusion: Do You Know Jesus?....................     199     

Acknowledgments....................     203     

Notes....................     205     

Recommended Reading....................     213     

About the Author....................     217     


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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 27 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 2, 2013

    Highly Recommended! Going to bless your life! You must check it out!!!!

    This book has change me an so many ways. You may ask yourself why many people go to church and still don't change. Well, let me tell their purpose is totally different instead of seeking God, which is the answer to all our question, they seek just religion. They start looking at what other people inside the church do wrong or even what the Pastor did wrong. They think its about staying comfortable, and it's really not. So, if you interested in this book, please be sure read it. Because its going to bless your life, ad you wouldn't like to miss it!

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 7, 2013

    First-things-first, grace overload! This book is saturated with

    First-things-first, grace overload! This book is saturated with grace.

    Jefferson Bethke didn't go to seminary school nor is he a pastor, which gives him the inclination to say "I'm not really qualified to write this book." However, he realizes that God is not looking for qualified people, but for people who are broken and willing to admit that they need His grace. Jefferson puts it this way, "It's like God is saying the only way to qualify is to admit you don't qualify." You will learn from reading his book that grace is a scandalous love story, "God's grace isn't nice and cute. It's scandalous." Grace is for everyone, the broken, the dirty, and the lowest of the lowest. We all need grace, and Jefferson understood that:

    "Grace isn't there for some future me but for the real me. The me who was messy. The one who was addicted to porn. The me who didn't have all the answers. The me who was insecure. He loved me in my mess; he was not waiting until I cleaned myself up. That truth changed my life, and I'm convinced it can change yours."

    Jefferson is sharing the invitation that was made by Jesus Christ at the cross to abandon dead, dry, rule-keeping and embrace that fact that you are unconditionally loved, and so much more. Jesus>Religion is story of a radical man with a radical message, changing people's lives in a radical way.

    Read a full review at: accordingtojan (.com)

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 7, 2013

    In all reality this is a book I believe everyone needs to read.

    In all reality this is a book I believe everyone needs to read. Whether you’re a Christian or not, it is a challenging book. Jefferson walks the reader through his history with religion and Jesus. He communicates a strong message of how Jesus is greater than religion. The resounding theme of the book is everything is about Jesus, it’s a message of the love of God through his Son.
    The book doesn’t beat around the bush, Jefferson doesn’t hold back. It is message this generation needs and actually deep down wants to hear. This is your chance to take your faith to a whole new level! I encourage everyone to pick up a copy and when you are done reading, pass it along to someone else. But this is your warning…you will be challenged, you will have to make a choice to face fears and your perspective of people and sin may need altered.
    While the book does discuss some heavy topics it is a VERY encouraging book. Many times are I was reading I was laughing, smiling and literally having a good time with the book. I felt as if my life was interacting with the words written. The message is a message of life! You won’t regret reading this book. It is worth the time, the money and investment. It is a message you will want to share with your loved ones.
    Happy reading!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 7, 2013

    Have you ever met a new friend, with whom you were like "YE

    Have you ever met a new friend, with whom you were like "YES! Someone who understands!"
    It's like hearing your heart and thoughts echoed back to you...
    That's what Jefferson Bethke's book, Jesus > Religion  was like for me.
    Jeff shares pure grace. How we don't have to do (nor CAN'T) do anything to earn or lose the Father's love for us.
    "God broke me to fix me because He loved me." -pg 6
    "Religion says do,Jesus says done." -  pg 28
    "When Jesus told the first disciples to love their enemies,he didn't add " as long as they look like you,talk like you,and act like you". Loving your enemies means loving THEM ." -pg 63
    "We don't want to take advantage of it{grace} because because there is nothing better out there to take advantage of it for." -pg 152
    This is an encouraging,challenging book that will provide fresh revelations of the Fathers love toward you!
    It will change how you view yourself,your relationship with the Father,and how you view others around you!
    WELL worth the time and investment!

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2013

    If there¿s one person who could grab the attention of my generat

    If there’s one person who could grab the attention of my generation about Christianity, it would be Jeff Bethke.
    His stark honesty is invigorating, and his openness to his pains and temptations (drugs, sex, alcohol) made him all the
     more real and tangible. It’s not a story about a good Christian boy who did everything that was asked of him. It’s a story of a messed
     up twenty year old who was pursued, loved, and redeemed by Jesus in spite of all that he has done.

    He goes on to talk about how different religion is [his definition of religion: any system that upholds moral effort or good behavior
    as a way in which we can have a proper relationship with God.]  from Jesus.

    -Religion makes enemies/ Jesus makes friends
    -With religion, there are good and bad people/ with Jesus, there are only bad people in need of grace
    -Religion is a means to get things from god/ If we seek Jesus, we get God
    -With religion, if you are suffering, god is punishing you/ God already punished Jesus on your behalf, so suffering is His mercy
    -Religion says, “God will love you if…”/ Jesus said, “God so loved…”
    -Religion points to a dim future/ Jesus points to a bright future
    -All of these points are found in the table of contents.

    This is the perfect book for anyone who wants to take that first step towards getting to know Jesus.
    The real Jesus. The Jesus who is dangerous, unpredictable, radical, and amazing… not the safe and sanitized Jesus who
    is too good to be crucified. This book is for non-Christians and Christians alike. Those who don’t know or understand the meaning
     of grace, those who turned their backs on God because they felt going to Church to be a chore or a duty or a guilt-driven action, those
     who think they’ve got it together, those who are suffering, those who are curious, and those who think they know everything.

    His words very much resonated with my thoughts on religion, and he answered important questions that once made me
    skeptical about my faith. Having him explain grace through his example made me understand its power and scandal, and it helped
    me dig deeper into my faith and find the real Jesus.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 23, 2013

    WOW Jefferson doesn't candy coat it! This is an amazing book!  B

    WOW Jefferson doesn't candy coat it! This is an amazing book! 
    Be honest about your weakness, be honest that you're scared,
    and be honest about the fact that it's Jesus who defeats the sins that
     trip you up, not you. His ways aren't our ways, BUT his ways save. 
    OUR WAYS DONT!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Jesus > Religion is a game changer; this book has the potenti

    Jesus > Religion is a game changer; this book has the potential to shift how an entire generation knows Jesus and to clearly see when He’s being falsified and used, especially in the name of religion.

    When Jefferson Bethke’s video went viral in early 2012, what impressed me even more than his spoken word poetry was how he responded to his critics. My expectations therefore were high for Jesus > Religion and Bethke exceeded them all. 

    Thoughtfully unpacking the message from his video and going much deeper, Bethke is open about his own struggles and shares his faith journey.

    Bethke’s strength is in his gift for juxtaposition. He has the humility of someone twice his age, while speaking truth in today’s vernacular. Between intersections of words, Bethke calls us all out on our hypocrisy with directness and grace.

    I would highly recommend first reading this book yourself before gifting it to someone who isn’t familiarity with the Bible. While Bethke does a great job of giving context to the stories he uses from the New Testament, especially in the later half of the book, not as much context is given for the Old Testament references. With discussion questions written provided at the end of each chapter, this is a great book to read and discuss with a friend.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2013

    As a huge fan of Jefferson's video "Why I hate Religion, bu

    As a huge fan of Jefferson's video "Why I hate Religion, but love Jesus" I was so excited for the release of this book. An insight for those who are lost. This is the most lost generation which is disheartening because as we are in the last days it's important that we as Christians make a push forward. With so many things in the world against God and religion It's up to us to take a stand and spread the truth about the importance of relationship between ourselves and Christ. Jefferson dives into subjects many are afraid to touch on. He is broadening a narrow path. I find reading this book along side my bible really helps put things into perspective. God gave us rules, not to beat us with but to guide us. Jefferson does an amazing job at bringing his own personal testimony into the book while expressing his past regret, thoughts, and love for Jesus bringing the literature full circle. Jefferson shows that the norm that you're used to is in fact what's keeping you away from Jesus. His love is more than just failing at decisions you make every day, he shows how the Love of Jesus is never failing, and never ending despite our mistakes, that anyone wants it, can have it... It's up to you to get it.

    Bottom line is, Jefferson has started something that this generation needs. An army of sinful souls preaching their Love for Jesus to the masses, one I am happy to be a part of.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2013

    Words cannot describe how incredible challenging, convicting, ye

    Words cannot describe how incredible challenging, convicting, yet beautifully encouraging “Jesus > Religion” is. So many of my questions have been answered, but the book also brought up a lot of other good questions that stretched me. My faith has been made stronger through this book and I’m already in the process of reading it a second time! Jefferson really dives into why we should completely love others and how God views us as his children. There is hope and victory through Jesus and I really hope that those who read it will realize this! 

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2014

    Great book

    This is a GREAT book. It is amazing. It really made me think and it is a great discussion. The only bad thing is it didnt have a great ending kinda build it up and them let me down.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2013

    I love this book so much because it's like talking to Jeff and h

    I love this book so much because it's like talking to Jeff and hearing his thoughts and seeing that his struggles are like ours and everyone's. This book is amazing and inspiring it will uplift your heart and let you realize that you are not alone and that we are all in this together truly under Jesus's grace. 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 18, 2014

    As a 23-year-old, I found it so nice to read a book about Christ

    As a 23-year-old, I found it so nice to read a book about Christianity by an author who's also in their early 20s.  It was relatable, full of truth, and very well-written.  I'm recommending it to everyone I know - it truly is life-changing!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2014

    I can't say that the book was poorly written, because it was not

    I can't say that the book was poorly written, because it was not. However, the author just annoys me tremendously. First, he has absolutely no background in theology or biblical studies, yet writes as though he knows it all. Second, he over-generalizes and puts all Christians in one category. We ALL "prostitute" Jesus and we ALL either worship sex, food, possessions, or other things. I would have responded better to the book if he would have written from his personal point of view instead of putting all of his readers in the same boat as him. I don't doubt that this book will reach unbelievers and turn their hearts to The Lord and that's great, but it was hard for me to get through. 

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 8, 2014

    Excellent

    I highly recommend this book. The information is based on what I was raised to believe Jesus is all about. We are to love our God and each other.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 4, 2014

    Great Book

    This is a great book, reading it again with my sisters in christ group! Got to meet him and listen to him speak at one of his book signings he is a great guy! Cant wait to read his wifes book coming out this spring.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2013

    Great!

    Helped me grasp the fact that I don't have to be perfect to be loved by Jesus (:

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2013

    Hayley

    Res before this J

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  • Posted November 22, 2013

    Nothing special

    Disappointed, nothing new.

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 28, 2013

    Let me tell you, this is NOT a book you can just rush through.  

    Let me tell you, this is NOT a book you can just rush through.  I totally mean that in a very positive way.  This book definitely gives you some food for thought.  His comparisons on Jesus' outlook on things versus the whole religious outlook is spot on.  In my opinion, he's not calling Christianity (the truest form...beliefs, His Word, etc.) bad.  It's the religion Jesus was against (the man-made and wrong kind) that he does.  This book makes you take the time to look deep down inside and truly think about it all.  He has interwoven his own personal stories along with biblical truths to show us just how much Jesus loves us and wants His best for us.  He pointed out a lot of good points that made me have a few "aha! moments" of my own and, at times, his words would cause an "ouch" or two.  This is definitely a book that I would and do recommend :)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2013

    Another pseudo-psychological book that says the only way for you

    Another pseudo-psychological book that says the only way for you to be a "GOOD" person is to put your faith in a fictional character.

    0 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

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