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Sacrilege: Finding Life in the Unorthodox Ways of Jesus (Shapevine) Paperback – October 1, 2011
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From the Back Cover
It is safe to say most Christians do not live like Jesus did, have the same influence on people he had, or draw even the slightest curiosity from the onlooking world. Jesus's ability to attract people and win their hearts was directly related to how he challenged their assumptions about religion. He not only gave them a unique, personal way to follow him but also showed them how to participate in his mission.
Sacrilege exposes the patterns of thinking that have held the church hostage for years and inspires you to rethink the way you understand Scripture, family, spiritual formation, conversion, church, sin, and more. Your faith may never be the same. And that's a good thing.
"A refreshing book for those of us who want to know Jesus and who want to make Jesus known. Hugh Halter shares with us how to remove the barriers of religion and let people meet Jesus in us."--Dave Ferguson, lead pastor, Community Christian Church; spiritual entrepreneur, NewThing
"Hugh, in his fabulously engaging way, accomplishes the release of Christian theology from its church-centric focus back onto the streets--where it got its start and where it belongs. It's like opening a window in a musty room to let in some fresh air."--Reggie McNeal, missional leadership specialist, The Leadership Network
"Hugh Halter has written a carefully constructed theological Molotov cocktail which explodes false myths while it fires up the Christian imagination for truth, beauty, and goodness."--Leonard Sweet, bestselling author and professor at Drew University and George Fox University
"This is an honest retelling of Jesus's unruly story with a simple call to be like him in a world where most prefer their sacred cows untipped and their feathers unruffled."--Jen Hatmaker, speaker, author of Interrupted and Seven
"A jarringly honest appraisal of the church. Halter is a missional apostle cut out of the same cloth as Saint Patrick."--Jim Henderson, cofounder of Off the Map, author of Jim and Casper Go to Church and coauthor of The Outsider Interviews
Hugh Halter is a church planter, pastor, consultant, and missionary to the US. He is the national director of Missio and the lead architect of Adullam, a congregational network of missional communities in Denver, Colorado.
About the Author
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Top Customer Reviews
This book encourages us to reexamine Jesus and ourselves. Jesus is shown to be the untamed Lord that He is. We are encouraged to take a serious look at our lives and follow Jesus into relationships with people with whom He likes to hang out. Hugh provides challenging steps into this at the end of each chapter. These consideration and action questions challenge me to interact with God, myself and others as I learn afresh what it is to be an apprentice of Jesus. They provide practical steps for spiritual formation on the way.
There are powerful insights in this book that will create significant dissonance for the churched person who has bought into a gospel other than the gospel of the kingdom of God. There is guidance here that will enable the heart that yearns to put into practice the very things Jesus lived and taught that we ought to be doing.Read more ›
Published by Baker Books.
Two stories that the author shares hooked me with this book and from then on I had a hard time putting it down. The first was in the introduction where he shares his experience of going to the Holy Land but leaves disappointed because of his inability to find Jesus there. "...Religion, religious people, pious performances and massive stone impediments blocked me from..." seeing Jesus.
The second story, in the first chapter, he shares about a hard core neighbor who was giving him the finger ( `flipping him the bird') while the author was mowing his lawn. Not sure how to handle it he decided to stop the mower, lifted both hands in the air and return the finger with both hands, he gave him the `double bird'. From that point on they became good friends and the neighbor was part of their faith community.
The author committed what he calls sacrilege, the act of taking what is deemed sacred and to disrespect, disregard, and be irreverent toward it. The author states that Jesus was the most sacrilegious revolutionary of all time and he calls his followers to be like him. Jesus was able to influence those around him because of his sacrilegious ways and thus the author uses the beatitudes to help us become like Jesus.
In the second beatitude "Blessed are those that mourn..." the author brought in those verses in Ecclesiastes which tell us that mourning is better than pleasure. Suggesting that for us to be sacrilegious we must risk being with those who hurt and those who are sick. He used the example of the monastic communities in the middle ages how they would move into areas where there was pain instead of moving away from it.Read more ›
If you don't agree that Jesus was out to teach and lead into a new way of life, you won't much appreciate Halter's book. You should still read it, though, because he is on target far more than he is off.
Halter chooses the beatitudes as the frame on which he hangs his argument that Jesus came to smash "the spiritual, religious, traditional, and pop idols of his day." Here again, though, the reader is challenged by Halter's assumption that today's society mirrors that in Jesus' day. if it does, as Ahlter alleges and I agree, then much of what Jesus did comes against current religion.
Where I'm a little thrown off, though, is when Halter suggests that we substitute the word apprentice for follower and/or disciple with reference to Jesus. Especailly as he presnts a definition of what hhe means by apprentice. I am concerned that narrowing definitions for substitute words will lose too many people. Halter is too propehtic is his call to lose people on word choice.
But, then, merely to call people to follow Jesus, or to be disciples, would lose his voice in the crowd. Most anyone who claims to be a Christian would also claim to be a follower or disciple of Jesus. Could "apprentice" help here? Perhaps it could, if our society could separate the word from the Donald, of which I am skeptical.
Apprenticeship is an attractive metaphor for what it is to be a Christian.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Easy reading - but hard to read! Challenged my lethargy and compliance to be " religious", when following Jesus is meant to be anything but that.. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Slavedave
Hugh takes a very practical view to the ways of the Kingdom here on Earth. Well worth reading for those challenged by the curretn format of institutional church.Published 20 months ago by Norm Fuller
This is the radical good news that I believe is spoken of in the bible and demonstrated in the life of Jesus. This is a compelling movement of love that I want to be a part of. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Julie Austin
I like how the author sees Jesus!! Oh, that we would be more like him. It so reminds me of the Ghandi quote "I like your Chirst. I do not like your Christians."Published on November 19, 2013 by Amazon Customer
Hugh has a way of getting into your heart. It was a tremendous read. Hugh keep up the good workPublished on October 10, 2013 by Andrewvan
I was disappointed in this book and with the condescending attitude of the author. Not worth the time I took to read the book.Published on August 9, 2013 by David in Texas
I loved Hugh Halter's take on life and how it should look when you're living it for your Savior, as if he is truly Lord of your life. Read morePublished on April 16, 2013 by Max Arvidson
If you've struggled with the normal way of "doing church," read this book! I wish Hugh Halter had a church in my area, because I would definitely be there.Published on April 9, 2013 by Judith Goodrow