Pagan Christianity?


RejesusI have just finished reading the book ReJesus: A Wild Messiah for a Missional Church by Alan Hirsch and Michael Frost. The authors put forth a challenge for a re-reinstatement of Jesus as the central focus of our spiritual lives - both as disciples and as communities of his people. It's time we let go of the domesticated Jesus that we often learned about in Sunday School and embrace the "loving, wildly passionate, dangerous, radically merciful, and always surprising" Jesus portrayed in the Gospels. An encounter with this Jesus transforms us from the inside out and radically changes our approach to mission.

Here are a few good quotes and thoughts from the book:

  • Our Christology (what we think about Jesus) affects our Missiology and then eventually our Ecclesiology (how we think about and do church).
  • Like a photocopy of a copy of a copy, our picture of Jesus can fade and even become distorted over time if we are not careful. It's time to get back to our origins - to the original, to re-Jesus both our personal lives and our churches.
  • Like a computer that has crashed many times, It's time to reboot the system back to the defaults - to reJesus our lives and the church. We need to re-calibrate to Jesus.
  • An authentic comprehension of Jesus is critical as we are to be like him - 'little Jesuses'.

This book is well worth reading.

P.S. You also might want to check out Alan Hirsch's web site, The Forgotten Ways. Alan is a good friend of mine. God is using him as a prophetic voice in our generation to challenge the Western church's paradigms about church, discipleship, and mission.


Thanks Mark for the good news on ReJesus.
This book seems to be really good as we should follow and imitate the Lord in all our beings-spirit, soul and body.

Excellent book.

...really enjoyed reading it over Christmas

Peace & blessings


How ironic! I am sitting at George fox University listening to Allen right now live...before today I had never heard of him, and then today I cross his path via blog and live!

well said Mark...not only we know how to talk the Jesus talk, we all christ-followers need to remember to walk the Jesus-walk....

RE Our Christology (what we think about Jesus) affects our Missiology and then eventually our Ecclesiology (how we think about and do church)

I read somewhere that instead of our Missiology informing us on our Ecclesiology, the church has gotten it round the wrong way (our Ecclesiology effects our Missiology). We gotta get it round the right way, our mission driving the way we live!

It would seem there is a big change coming and I like many are all so hopeful. The change is the need to focus on Jesus again and reading Jim Wallis' book 'Seven Ways To Change The World' there is an organisation called the 'Red Letter Christians'. All members of this organisation affirm the Bible in it's entirety but they all agree on the one most important thing needed today - there is a pressing need to focus on Jesus' messages, hence the name 'Red Letter Christians'. This is a message in-part shared with Alan Hirsch and Michael Frost's book (judging by Mark's summary and the associated comments).

The 'Red Letter Christians' organisation is growing and reaching to many. We've been blessed at City Life as we have had Tony Campolo (a member of the Red Letter Christians) preach to us with a sermon based on John 14:12 and I hope we have many more impacting sermons such as this. I was impacted and have acted and I know others (Christians and non-Christians) will be impacted so long as they can be reached with the message of Jesus.

I have been reading The Forgotten Ways too. Of course there is no one right way to do fellowship, it is the same Spirit working in all different forms of church. Quite interested in checking out some of the alternative missional churches to see what's happening first hand though. Any suggestions where?

That's a great question, Peter. Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of 'successful' models at the moment - just a lot of experimentation in various new forms of church.

Interestingly enough, a lot of the emerging church writers are more thinkers and analysts than they are practitioners. So there's a long way to go.

Here in Melbourne there are a few 'emerging churches', each having mixed results as far as their effectiveness. I have a pastor who is a friend of mine who leads a large church. Five years ago, quite a few young adults left his church to move to an emerging church. Recently, many of them have been returning and saying things such as, "After a while we weren't sure where we were emerging to."

So it is early days.

Alan raises some good issues in his book that are worth thinking through and discussing.

I hope that even large churches such as ours might be able to be part of modeling more diverse ways of 'being church' in the future, without throwing away traditions of the past that still may work for many people.

You might want to visit Alan's blog and ask him for any recommendations.

Thanks Peter

Thanx for your reply. Yes the gap between theory and practice can at times be large. Probably not a good idea to dismember the church as it stands just yet for models as yet untried and untested. I have heard on the grapevine that Darljit's has ideas for getting lifegroups to become focussed on community action. This was an idea our life-group toyed with last year. Probably easier for most of us to serve the community if we are with our brothers and sisters, rather than doing it alone.

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