Customer Reviews


161 Reviews
5 star:
 (118)
4 star:
 (20)
3 star:
 (14)
2 star:
 (5)
1 star:
 (4)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In His Steps, boy was I in for a suprize...
To tell you the truth when I found out I had to read this for school, I thought it would (...)... But I read it and here's what I think...(You can hear my opinion, but read this book yourself as well, trust me and be open-minded!!!)
So it goes, a pastor of a church Henry Maxwell is interupted in finishing writing his sermon for Sunday morning tomorrow when the...
Published on December 1, 2001 by Liolania

versus
96 of 105 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars this is not the original!
I bought this book "...UPDATED IN TODAY'S LANGUAGE." and was convicted and inspired by it. But before I finished it, a friend, not knowing I had this book, gave me a copy which was in the original language. (Thomas Nelson Publishers) I was amazed at the difference between the two books. I believe the description "...UPDATED IN TODAY'S LANGUAGE"...
Published on September 6, 2000 by Norman W. Brueske


‹ Previous | 1 217 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

96 of 105 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars this is not the original!, September 6, 2000
By 
This review is from: In His Steps (Hardcover)
I bought this book "...UPDATED IN TODAY'S LANGUAGE." and was convicted and inspired by it. But before I finished it, a friend, not knowing I had this book, gave me a copy which was in the original language. (Thomas Nelson Publishers) I was amazed at the difference between the two books. I believe the description "...UPDATED IN TODAY'S LANGUAGE" should be changed to "...UPDATED INTO LANGUAGE MORE BENEVOLENT TO THE NARCISSUSTIC CULTURE PRESENT IN MANY OF OUR TODAY'S CHURCHES. Here are some examples.
Edited version (p14) "The members of the First Church of Raymond believed in having only the best music, and its choir this morning was a source of great inspiration."
Original version(p 4). "The First Church of Raymond believed in having the best music money can buy, and its quartet choir was a source of great pleasure to the congregation. The anthem was inspiring."
Both versions sort of say the same thing but the underlying flavor of the nature of this congregation appears substantially different, I think. In the first the choir was of great inspiration and in the last the choir was of great pleasure and the anthem was inspiring. That is different.
Also, Sheldons descriptive writing should not be abbreviated. Another example:
Edited version: "Rachel Winslow was beautiful as she stood behind the choir screen of carved oak, and a general rustle of expectation swept over the audience as she prepared to sing."
Origial version: "Rachel Winslow looked very beautiful that morning as she stood up behind the screen of carved oak which was significantly marked with the emblems of the cross and the crown. Her voice was even more beautiful than her face, and that meant a great deal. There was a general rustle of expectation over the audience as she rose."
The editing has nothing to do with "today's language" but has everything to do with making Sheldon's self-incriminating description of main stream christianity more palatable to today's evangelical christian culture. I am a christian and belong to a mega-church.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars In His Steps, boy was I in for a suprize..., December 1, 2001
To tell you the truth when I found out I had to read this for school, I thought it would (...)... But I read it and here's what I think...(You can hear my opinion, but read this book yourself as well, trust me and be open-minded!!!)
So it goes, a pastor of a church Henry Maxwell is interupted in finishing writing his sermon for Sunday morning tomorrow when the doorbell rings and he has to answer it because his wife is out. Well when he opens the door there is what a appears to be a tramp(A dirty shabby man), asking for work. But Henry is kind and tells him he knows of none. The man leaves and Henry get's back to work. Henry was proud of his sermon, until the next morning at church, after the sermon is over the man(supposed tramp)burst into the church and runs up to the front of the church where the pastor is. He tells them he is no tramp nor drunk. But he is searching for work and everyone has been rude to him and that they could not be real questions, and he really questions them what it is to follow in Jesus steps. Then the man passes out
So starts the amazing revelation of the First Church of Raymond, Henry is so moved by the question, which questions his own discipleship that he asked anyone who is willing to meet him in a room after the service if they are willing to take a pledge to ask the question "What Would Jesus Do?" no matter what the consequences of anything including: Social and financial loss... What good is money and social status after you are dead anyways? around 50 ppl in the first week promise to take the pledge. Which changes the course of life not only in Raymond, but in many other cities to come as well.
It is a little slow the first few pages, but quickly speeds up. The author develops the story through the development of the characters, and is a very nice change from the normal novels most of us read. Plus it has all the ingredients of most novels and so much more. It has murder,deception,and greed, but also contains Godly principals which build the book.
I was not let down, but was amazed at how good the book was, since I expected it to (...)!!! So come in with low expectations and an open-mind and you are sure to enjoy this book and be truely inspired. It is especially for Christains and non-Christains as well. (...)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


47 of 51 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars In His Steps Review, December 20, 2009
This review is from: In His Steps (Paperback)
Rarely have I come across a book that I am so torn over as to how to rate it. Usually a book will be obviously good or bad, making the ultimate conclusion in rating it a fairly easy process. While a good book may have some detractors, overall the good outweighs the bad, with the reverse also being true of bad books. However, I'm having a hard time making such a distinction in reviewing Charles Sheldon's classic, In His Steps. There are many good things about the book, but there are also many not-so-good things.

The book centers primarily on a few members of the affluent First Church of Raymond in the late 19th century who have been faced with the question of how Jesus would act if He were in their place. (In His Steps can be credited with the origin of the popularized question of "What would Jesus do?" or WWJD). A call is made for volunteers to ask the question, "What would Jesus do?" before making any decisions for one whole year. Among those who volunteer are the pastor, the local newspaper owner/editor, a gifted singer, a wealthy young woman, a writer, and an employee of the local railroad. The book follows their efforts during the course of the year as they attempt to live out their pledge of asking, "What would Jesus do?" This leads them to make decisions that aren't the most popular or even understood by some family members and the general public. It also leads them to undertake a greater involvement in their city, both in evangelical outreaches and for the good of society in general.

For a book that was written over 100 years ago, it cuts to the heart of our current culture in the majority of the Western world of materialism and even more so among Christians. Perhaps the hardest hitting teaching comes towards the end of the book when the pastor asks a congregation, "How much is the Christianity of the age suffering for Him? Is it denying itself at the cost of ease, comfort, luxury, elegance of living? What does the age need more than personal sacrifice?....The Christianity that attempts to suffer by proxy is not the Christianity of Christ." Here is found perhaps the main and best thrust of the entire book. The call to Christianity is a call to suffer for Christ. "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it." (Mark 8:34-35) The decision to follow Jesus, to do what He would do, is not played out in the characters' lives as something that turns out rosy. One man loses his job and as a result, his wife becomes bitter toward him. The newspaper owner/editor watches his subscribers and advertisers leave in droves because of his decision not to allow certain kinds of content. Yet another turns down what some may consider the "opportunity of a lifetime" to serve in a more humble ministry. This is no health, wealth and prosperity gospel. Wearing a bracelet that says "WWJD?" simply won't cut it. All through the book, the element of personal suffering and sacrifice is continually presented as the ultimate test of following Christ.

In His Steps gives an example of Christianity in action - how Christianity looks in the nitty-gritty, everyday stuff of life. The characters realize that Christianity is not simply an abstract idea, full of wise sayings and doctrines designed only to stimulate the intellect. Christianity is lived out Monday through Sunday. It's not only making decisions based on what Jesus might do, but telling people the reasoning behind the decision. It's getting involved in the community, reaching out to those in need, using the resources that we've been blessed with to help change a life. This is Christianity in action.

This brings me to the issues that have given me pause and not just a little concern. First, a few minor points. The writing style is very poor. Superlatives abound in the descriptions of the effects of various decisions. "For the first time ever..." or "he had never..." or "Nothing had ever..." or "Such a thing had never..." - these overused phrases become old and trite in their use. Additionally, the plot becomes rather predictable. However, that being said, this book is perhaps rarely read for its fictional and linguistic prowess.

While the characters in the narrative are seeking to follow Christ's example, much of the decisions are based very much on personal interpretation with little to no Biblical basis for their reasoning. In one sense, the subjective nature of the question at hand makes the decision one that should be and can only be decided by the person ultimately responsible. In this, the author rightly puts great emphasis on prayer and the personal nature of the pledge. However, this lends somewhat of a relativistic mindset if the decision is not based on what Scripture says. For example, the newspaper editor decides that printing a Sunday edition is not what Jesus would do since Jesus would not publish something that caused a reader to read anything else but the Bible on Sunday. While to be commended for making such a difficult decision and following his conscious, this makes me wonder what in Scripture teaches such a notion that reading anything else but the Bible on Sunday is contrary to Christ's teachings.

The biggest issue I have with the book is why the Christians go about seeking to follow Christ's steps or do what Jesus would do. Set during the heyday of the Temperance Movement, much emphasis is placed on the poorer citizens of the city and the effect that alcohol played in many of the problems that class of society faced. Further, while there seems to be much emphasis on evangelization, the improvement of life in general for the class is seen as the ultimate end of this evangelization. Oddly enough, this message of "accept Christ and everything well get better" goes against the message for the upper class citizens that Christians must suffer. The gospel that is proclaimed in In His Steps is not a gospel that comes by means of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. Instead, it is a gospel that points to Christ as the ultimate example of how to live and reform society, but not the source of the strength to bring about that reform. And Christ's example in this case is to help the poor. Where a conflict arises is in dealing with the question, If helping the poor in bettering their society is what the gospel offers, how does this affect how the poor themselves live? This question is asked point blank of several of the pastors by a man out of work for many days and not one of them can provide an answer. One pastor ponders the question in his heart as "a question that brings up the entire social problem in all its perplexing entanglement of human wrongs and its present condition contrary to every desire of God for a human being's welfare. Is there any condition more awful than for a man in good health, able and eager to work, with no means of honest livelihood unless he does work, actually unable to get anything to do, and driven to one of three things: begging or charity at the hands of friends or strangers, suicide or starvation?"

Nowhere in the book is a person's sinful condition addressed, but only the social condition. When reform comes, it should not, it cannot come through the betterment of a person's economic wellbeing. I'm not denying that we have a responsibility to minister to others, especially those in need. I think even my own tendency is to try to ignore others' condition, like the condition of the man on the corner holding the sign. But in helping those in need, we should not do it simply for the sake of our own suffering nor in trying to help them make a better life for themselves. We should be pointing them to Christ, not as the example of who we are following, but as the source of the strength to do what we do, the source of the righteousness to overcome sin. Without Christ, without repentance, we can improve society to the last person but will not change the root of the problem and will find them just as bad as before. As John Owen so aptly puts it in The Mortification of Sin: "Poor soul! It is not thy sore finger but thy hectic fever that thou art to apply thyself to the consideration of. Thou settest thyself against a particular sin, and dost not consider that thou art nothing but sin."

In His Steps is certainly a step in the right direction of encouraging believers to challenge the way we live and think and interact with the world around us. But the reader should always keep in mind that the gospel of Christ is not an example simply to be followed in order to better society, but rather the gospel is solely and completely about Christ Himself and the righteousness we have in Him. In following Him, a person's social standing may not improve in the slightest, but his eternal standing in the sight of God will. And that's what matters.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Doing it God's Way, August 16, 2001
By 
Brenda Padgett (Evansville, IN USA) - See all my reviews
I really enjoy reading in His Steps and What Would Jesus Do? It was interesting to know what people in the past had to do to follow the teaching of Jesus. It is also interesting to see how the people of this era have to say and do to follow Jesus. I think it is harder today than in the past because we have more to tempt us and more outwordly things to distract us from the purpose that Jesus set for us. I think everyone should read this book. I feel it would do a lot of people a lot of good. I know it did for me.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This story will remain in my heart and mind for the rest of my life, December 14, 2006
By 
Christy (Alaska, United States) - See all my reviews
This books is not like the usual stories I prefer to read. I love a book that makes you want to keep turning the pages, that takes you away from reality for a while. This book instead, makes you think...but definately in a good way. It is a story that makes you think about how YOU PERSONALLY interact with others. What your contribution to the world is. It is a book that I would definately recommmend everyone should read once in their lifetime.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What Would Jesus Do... Really..., August 23, 2006
This review is from: In His Steps (Paperback)
Every wondered where the phrase "What would Jesus do?" came from? It began from this book. Despite today seeing many WWJD products around, reading this book brings us to the very heart of not only how the phrase came about, but also what that phrase really means.

This book was first written as a series of unusual sermons that was a continued story, one chapter to be given out each week about what happened in the lives of various persons with different backgrounds and vocations, but all applied WWJD to every decision they made. Charles Sheldon was the author, and he was the pastor of Central Congregational Church in Topeka, Kansas, and this series began in June 1896.

One of the amazing things about this book is that despite it being written over 100 years ago, the story still applies to this very day. As you read it, you will find not so much that you travel back to 1896, but it feels like it was written for today. What would Jesus do if He were you?

This book challenges the reader to consider the question "What Would Jesus Do?" in every decision in life. It tells of different persons who after taking an oath to do that began to bear their cross as a Christian, but at the same time experience the Spirit's work in their lives and through their lives. Though it is a story written by Sheldon, it could very well have been a real life story as well.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to WALK the TALK!!!, December 28, 1998
By A Customer
WWJD? isn't just a fashion statement, it's a way of life. Want to know how you should be living? Want to know how you are supposed to APPLY the Bible to your own life? Read this book. Reading it is easy. Using it as a mirror of yourself is harder. Changing your life and living this WAY, the WAY that Jesus did, the WAY that God wants us all to live, that is REALLY tough. It gets easier as you go, however. Don't just claim the name of Christian, read this and learn to live it! If you can read this and think there is nothing wrong with your life, then you are lying to yourself, but God knows the truth. Try it and see!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Christian Novel with a Powerful Message, June 5, 2001
By 
D. Keating (Bristow, VA United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: In His Steps (Hardcover)
I really enjoyed the simple message of "What would Jesus Do" that is the centerpiece of this classic Christian book. I have heard this saying many times in the many different Christian circles that I have traveled, but never knew its original source. Now that I have finished the book (the original version which I recommend), I think I have a much better understanding of what it means to a Christian to ask the question "What would Jesus do" in any situation we face.
I really enjoyed this book because it tells a compelling story, and prompts you to take a tough look at your own life. It brings all kinds of deep, thought provoking questions to mind. Questions like: What would I be willing to do to follow Jesus? Am I willing to make sacrifices in my own life to further his Kingdom? I bought this book because it looked very interesting, and I really glad that I did. I think that it will have a huge impact on my life, and my Christian faith.
I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in finding out more about the "What would Jesus do" concept. Also, anyone looking for a book that will challenge them to live a more meaningful life for God will benefit from this story. The book is not very long, and a pretty easy read. Hopefully, it will have a profound impact on you as it dit me.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The first (In His Steps) was great and now it is doubled., September 10, 1998
By 
I read in his steps about 10 years ago and now I getting the same joy from the grandson's remake in What Would Jesus Do. Most likely it will be the same hit. It can be life changeing for many people both the saved and the lost.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Could be better, January 16, 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: In His Steps (Mass Market Paperback)
This starts out fine, with a great premise (living your life asking "What would Jesus do?" in each situation), but gets bogged down about 2/3 of the way through and doesn't recover. Plus, the author only tackles this from the patronizing view of the rich practicing Christianity on those less fortunate. Too bad he didn't throw in a few chapters from the viewpoint of po' folks. Still, the original premise is well worth thinking about.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 217 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

In His Steps
In His Steps by Charles Monroe Sheldon (Mass Market Paperback - January 1, 1985)
$5.99
In Stock
Add to cart Add to wishlist
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.