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Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better Paperback – April 14, 2015
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"[A] charming handbook for the contemporary Christian that will also find its audience among pastors." ---Library Journal --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
About the Author
Brant Hansen is a radio host who has won multiple National Personality of the Year awards. He also works with CURE International, a worldwide network of hospitals that brings life-changing medical care and the good news of God’s love to children with treatable conditions. Brant currently lives in Northern California with his wife, Carolyn; his son, Justice; and his daughter, Julia. He can be found at branthansen.com and @branthansen on Twitter.
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I was fortunate enough to get an advanced copy of the book. It is written from a Christian point of view, but even skeptics will be able to get something out of this book and enjoy it in the process. Hansen isn't preachy or teachy. He doesn't even come off as an expert on the subject. In fact, each page is laced with humility which is very appropriate for the subject matter because through the pages, we discover how important humility is in being unoffendable.
Hansen chides those that want to cherry-pick scriptures justifying their anger and has a firm answer to them, but of course he does it without taking offense.
The unoffendable message is given to the reader packed with humorous and heart touching stories told in Hansen’s quirky, but charming way. He draws on Christian authors and artists and isn’t shy about picking on evangelical culture, as much as he does himself.
What I found out as I approached the end of the book was that Brant Hansen is right. I was not as prone to be offended in my daily life as I was before reading. Sure, I had times where the gut reaction of offense wanted to surface, but from reading the book being unoffendable wasn't quite as difficult as it was before and will probably get even easier day by day unless I turn loose of the concept. I do not plan to do that because I prefer peace in my life rather than strife.
I whole-heartedly recommend Unoffendable by Brant Hansen. Although it helped me a great deal, it doesn’t come off as a self-help book. It is more like a memoir or an amusing conversation with an interesting friend at a coffee shop. It was so enjoyable that I was always ready for another cup.
So what is this radical idea that Hansen presents? Simply this: Being offended is not a Christian virtue. And not only is it not a virtue, but it's never called for.
You see, when I take offense at something Joe did, I am standing in judgment of Joe's actions. Meanwhile, Joe has taken offense at something I did. And both of us are so wrapped up in these offenses, that neither of us are grateful for the forgiveness that God has already granted both of us. We've lost the plot; we aren't trusting God.
But what about sin? Surely we should be angry at sin, right? Well, the Bible tells us that God poured out His wrath at everyone's sin onto Jesus on the cross. Are you telling me that He has to climb back up on that cross to endure your wrath, too?
Hansen answers several other objections to his idea -- largely with Scripture, so if you disagree, take it up with God. But there is one upshot of his thesis that is the most damning to our perspective -- one that, ironically, many will find very offensive. That concept: there is no such thing as "righteous anger".
Immediately comes the rebuttal: Ephesians 4:26 says, "Be angry, and sin not." Right there, it would seem that Christians not only have permission to be angry, but are told that they ought to be. But other translations say, "When you are angry, do not sin." That's definitely not a command to be angry, and doesn't even really sound like permission.
But even if you dismiss those translations, we are told later in the same paragraph to "get rid of" a bunch of things. And you know what's in that list? Anger. Add to that a host of other Scriptures that all speak negatively of anger, and "be angry" sounds less and less like the best way to interpret the concept.
This even goes for injustice. Hansen notes that we have conflated "anger" and "action". Some Christian leaders even state that we can't have the latter without the former. But here's the thing: the cross, the ultimate righting of wrong, was not because God was angry at sin; it was because God loves us. Love is the motivation behind seeking to correct injustice. If someone needs "righteous anger" to fuel their pursuit of justice, I have to question their dedication to justice.
Being angry and taking offense come naturally to us. Should that not be a warning bell for us? That which is easy to do rarely is what we ought to do. Or as Hansen puts it: Anger, selfishness, defensiveness and judgmentalism are "not exceptional ... but grace is."
Most recent customer reviews
Living this way is the KEY to PEACE.
Enjoy, and applause to Brant Hansen!!!