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Saving Jesus from the Church: How to Stop Worshiping Christ and Start Following Jesus

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  384 ratings  ·  62 reviews
From One of America's Leading Pastors, a Bold Call to Restore Christianity's True Mission: Following Jesus

The marriage of bad theology and hypocritical behavior by the church has eroded our spiritual lives. Taking the best of biblical scholarship, Meyers recasts core Christian concepts in an effort to save Christianity from its obsession with personal salvation. Not a ple
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ebook, 256 pages
Published October 6th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published 2009)
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Phil
I feel rather conflcted about this book, largely because I was ready to throw it out the bedroom window when I first started and was prepared to mostly agree with the last half of it. Robin Meyers attempts to 'save' the human Jesus from the distortions (he feels) which create the divine Christ in the imaginations of many of his (evangelical) supporters. This latest entry in the religious culture wars, even while disavowing those wars, really represents an extended polemic against the excesses of ...more
Walter
This is a fantastic book - always thoughtful, inclusive and well-intentioned, as well as challenging and heretical at times. In short, Rev. Robin Meyers has a unique view of Christian spirituality and communicates this in a fascinating, maddening, uplifiting and compelling way.

Ostensibly, Rev. Meyers is a (very?) liberal Protestant. Yet, given his view of the need for Christians to return to the original practice of the faith, he might also be considered a conservative (or purist) of sorts. Esse
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Themarie
Definitely a must-read for liberal Christians who are up for the challenge as told in the title: to stop worshiping Christ the "son of God", and start following Jesus the teacher.
Megan Yvette Barrett
Incredible. A must read for all Christians and agnostics/atheists who have always found Jesus the man more incredible than Christ the "son of man."
Lynne
Unfortunately, another "Remove God from Jesus and all will be well" book (too bad it isn't biblical). Too bad; I'd hoped for much better.
Aaron
This is certainly one of those books you have to read with an open mind... dissecting the facts, considering the reasoning, and accepting his or forming your own opinions. As a highly educated minister, Meyers digs deep - cracking the bedrock of many assumptions about basic Christian beliefs. If you read this with a grumpy face, you'll miss a lot.

As a philosopher, he questions many important things. Is "faith" the same as "belief"? And what are the differences and the redemptive qualities of eac
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Patrick M.
It's funny. If you turned this book into a questionnaire, I'd probably agree with 90-95% of the positions therein. And I've been known to express some of the same sentiments probably even more forcefully and bitingly than Myers does.

So why can I only give it two stars? Well, I think Rev. Myers has a case of blogger's disease. I don't even know if he blogs, but he sure sounds like a professional blogger or (maybe worse) a professional Internet commenter - always ready for debate and always on th
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Rod
There is one word for this book:

"EVIL"

But at the same time: I think every Christian should be forced to read this. It's good to know what the enemy is up to. And especially how gullible most modern church goers really are. (hint: look at the Goodreads reviews.)

I've read alot of crazy books with some very heretical thoughts but I think this one wins. The saddest things is that so many book reviewers actually accept this scholarship as trustworthy. How pathetic. (they probably all consider Dan Bro
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Sarah Martinez
Definitely drags you out of your comfort zone and makes you THINK. Something we all need from time to time.
Janice
Robin Meyers has put into words what I have been struggling to articulate since childhood. Thank You!
Daniel
Excellent in so many ways... worth a re-read just to take it all in.
Robert
A thought provoking, bold book - a joy to read - well-written in a sermon like rhetorical style. This is memorable "preaching". Meyer's emphasis is almost exclusively on "following" Jesus rather than "worshipping" him - on the historical Jesus, the revolutionary Jewish peasant, rather than on the "Logos" or the sacrificial "Lamb of God". He regards ethics rather than theology as the essence of Christianity. Boldly argues against orthodox dogmas - especially original sin, the blood atonement, ind ...more
Jess Dollar
This book was SO FREAKING GOOD I finally learned how to highlight with my Kindle in order to save passages. And I saved a LOT of passages! Problem is, it's a library book so I need to either buy it or re-borrow it every time I want to look at my highlights. Normally I would write them all down in my reading notebook but there are just too many awesome things highlighted in this book to be transposed.
Where I am coming from: I am not religious, am not a Christian, but love religion and love the g
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Jacob Stubbs
So, this book is controversial (as if the title and cover did not show an attempt at controversy). It was written to help bring people who are not of the Christian faith or have fallen away from the faith back to Christianity. It was not written for (and honestly will serve as quite alienating to) those who are currently Christians, unless they fall on the lefty side of mainline.

I think much of this controversy is undue and stems from certain presuppositional problems. Here's a few:

1) Meyers w
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Laurel Bradshaw
As a lifelong UCC/Congregationalist, the author is preaching to the choir here. This is not a book that will change the beliefs of fundamentalist Christians, but does provide "moral support" and perhaps some talking points for those of us who have often felt dismayed at being marginalized as "not TRUE Christians" for our emphasis on social justice rather than personal salvation. This is not a "new" Christianity, but a restoration of the original "intent" of Jesus, as far as I am concerned. It is ...more
Louis
As even the title shows, Meyers is talented at including witty sayings that grab one's attention. Yet, when one looks beyond these, there still is substance to Meyers position.

The biggest criticism I would hold for the book is that Meyers has a distorted perspective of where most Biblical scholars stands. He often writes as if more progressive Biblical scholarship has won out as the dominant view among scholars, even is not the dominant position held by most pastors and lay people. While the Bi
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Joseph Soltero
May 16, 2012 Joseph Soltero rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Joseph by: St. Bartholomew's Church
Another reviewer said it best... "mixed feelings".

I appreciate and believe in the overall core message of this book. The institutional church, if it is to speak to an emerging generation, needs to emphasize more the act of following Jesus, i.e., feeding the poor, clothing the hungry, healing the sick (and not just physically), reaching out to the outcast, rather than focus on the worship of Christ.

That being said, there are very serious errors in this book that led me to take it with a grain of
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George Miles
This book was hard to read in that it was very challenging and made me think - a lot. And I ultimately did not agree with everything Meyers had to say. So why the 5 stars? Because this book was hard to read in that it was very challenging and made me think - a lot. And I ultimately did not agree with everything Meyers had to say.

The concept of a difference between worshiping Christ and following Jesus is one with which I have been at least somewhat familiar for over 25 years. And pretty much agr
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M Christopher
Having met Robin Meyers and heard him speak, I was very disappointed in this book. While I found parts of it apt and even important, the overwhelming impression I was left with was of another classic liberal theologian pontificating with classic liberal arrogance on the basis of timeworn "revolutionary new theology" that only seminary students find interesting any more.

I am assured by friends that his second book, The Underground Church, is far more like the Rev. Dr. Meyers I met and heard -- wi
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Lynn S
This book is definite not an orthodox take on Christianity. The author calls the virgin birth and other staples of Christian teaching into question.

At the same time, the book is a powerful argument for following the teachings of Jesus (no Christ). It removes the veil of church traditions, the focus on Christ, and the teachings of organized religions. It instead brings the teachings of Jesus to the fore and reminds us of the two most important commandments: Love the Lord God and love your neighbo
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Kit
I picked this book up for the cover. I don't think I'm Meyers' target audience, which I would say is people who admire the social parts of the Christian message but are stopped from identifying themselves as Christian because they can't believe in the virgin birth or the resurrection. Meyers doesn't advance any new theology - it's pretty much all quoted directly from Matthew Fox and Shelby Spong. Instead, he argues that those who agree with him should take the church back from people who require ...more
Don
I have always had an aversion to creeds and the "I believe" obsession of many churches. I especially have a problem with the blood atonement doctrine. Meyers offers an interesting alternative to this mind set that has me rethinking my faith.
Wayne Siggelkow
Incredibly educational read which reveals so much history regarding the development of the early church and the bible. It was a challenging read as Meyers conclusions and personal beliefs surprised me intially for a professor of New Testament. However I discovered great truths that helped me understand so many things in a new way, that for me, instead of wanting to shun my faith, it has freed me to embrace faith in a far more authentic way by not having to ignore and justify things that had prev ...more
Je lis donc je suis
In a five year reading odyssey conceived as an attempt to somehow somewhat understand Christianity, I find myself now frequently reading authors of the United Church of Christ and other progressive Church communities. These authors have left me feeling both assaulted and yet somewhat at home...not sure where this will lead...Though the belief structures of my progressive brothers and sisters are different than my own in some areas many would consider key, I have found the values and principles t ...more
Lego Ergo Sum
In a five year reading odyssey conceived as an attempt to somehow somewhat understand Christianity, I find myself now frequently reading authors of the United Church of Christ and other progressive Church communities. These authors have left me feeling both assaulted and yet somewhat at home...not sure where this will lead...Though the belief structures of my progressive brothers and sisters are different than my own in some areas many would consider key, I have found the values and principles t ...more
Geoff Glenister
This book was fantastic. The major theme running all the way through the book from start to finish is one that is near and dear to my heart, and it is this: Jesus never said that the defining characteristic of one of his disciples is having certain ideas. Rather, over and over again in passages like the "Parable of the Sheep and the Goats" and verses like John 13:35, Jesus indicates that what distinguishes a disciple is the way they live - the way of love. But because we've made ideas into a lit ...more
Joe
Early on, I was rather enthusiastic in reading this book. It's as if we pretty much on the same page, so to speak. For instance,he holds that faith is more about relationship (to God, to others, and to the world) and practice (of loving) than about a set of right beliefs; I'm pretty much there these days. He has no use for or patience with the substitutionary "blood" atonement dogma; I've been there for some years. He pulls no punches, tells it like it is, and comes down hard on "the prosperity ...more
Jonathan
Nov 27, 2012 Jonathan rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Zack
Robin Meyers, a UCC minister in Oklahoma, offers a clear argument for, as he puts it, following Jesus, now worshiping Christ. (By this, he refers to a lifestyle of compassion guided by the teachings of the "itinerant Galilean sage" of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, rather than simply believing in the other-worldly savior of John.) In a series of short, readable chapters broken into dichotomies such as "Easter as Presence, not Proof," and "Discipleship as Obedience, not Observance," Meyers spells out h ...more
Les
Mixed feelings. I completely agree with the content of what Myers is saying, but I'm not sure that he is the person to convince Christians who haven't been exposed to this thinking prior to reading this book. I had read many of the books written by progressive Christians prior to this and was introduced in a more gentle fashion to the radical thoughts of these people. Myers minces no words and is stark in his accusations against the Christian church. His writing style is that of a preacher still ...more
R.Z.
Mixed feelings. I completely agree with the content of what Myers is saying, but I'm not sure that he is the person to convince Christians who haven't been exposed to this thinking prior to reading this book. I had read many of the books written by progressive Christians prior to this and was introduced in a more gentle fashion to the radical thoughts of these people. Myers minces no words and is stark in his accusations against the Christian church. His writing style is that of a preacher still ...more
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Dr. Robin Meyers is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ (UCC), a tenured professor in the philosophy department at Oklahoma City University, an author, a syndicated columnist, and an award-winning commentator for National Public Radio. He has been the Senior Minister of Mayflower Congregational UCC church of Oklahoma City, the fastest-growing UCC church in the Kansas-Oklahoma confe ...more
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“Indeed, a quick glance around this broken world makes it painfully obvious that we don't need more arguments on behalf of God; we need more people who live as if they are in covenant with Unconditional Love, which is our best definition of God. (p. 21)” 40 likes
“Contemporary Christians have declared war on individual immorality but seem remarkably silent about the evil of systems, especially corporate greed and malfeasance. (p. 176)” 14 likes
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