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Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream
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Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  26,096 ratings  ·  1,367 reviews

It's easy for American Christians to forget how Jesus said his followers would actually live, what their new lifestyle would actually look like. They would, he said, leave behind security, money, convenience, even family for him. They would abandon everything for the gospel. They would take up their crosses daily...

Paperback, 240 pages
Published May 4th 2010 by Multnomah Books (first published January 1st 2010)
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Corey Decker
Radical for the Wrong Reasons

"Taking Back your Faith from the American Dream." This is the confessed purpose of David Platt's new book, Radical. In it, he attempts to save American Christians from their cultural sins, showing that one cannot serve both the American Dream and Jesus Christ. A decision must be made: it is either radical obedience to Christ or self-centered, lukewarm mediocrity.


His thesis is based upon his interpretation of the great commission in Matthew 28 and a select f
Adam Shields
Full review:

Short review: I think this is one of those books that lots of people will read and many people will not do anything about. That is unfortunate, this is a call to live a life like what Christ has called us to. There are five specific suggestions that are in the last chapter and most people will not do one or two let alone all five.

I say this fully aware that I might be in the same boat. I may not really do what I should be doing either. But rea
Mark Franklin
I really don't like writing this kind of review, but I don't think I'll be able to get this out of my head until I do, so here it goes.
Warning: I'm going to be mean. Proceed at your own risk.

First, I appreciate the effort Platt is going to in order to shake American Christianity out of it's stupor. He says going to a mega-church on Sunday morning and giving a few dollars to international missions is an insufficient expression of the gospel. Amen, no argument from me. However, Platt then spends t
CJ Bowen
It is ironic to call a book entitled "Radical" imbalanced; by the nature of the case, such is Platt's goal. A gifted preacher, and a personable writer, Platt's call is good, but his technique is cruel, and his application over-generalized. Some Christians are called to radical lives like he describes; but others are called to be radical in a different way. Platt misses the radical nature of a life of boring Christian faithfulness, and sees no middle ground between the life of a first-century eva ...more
I have really struggled with how I felt about this book. At first I felt like, "I am SOOO sorry that I am a middle class American Christian, which automatically makes me somehow less of a Christian than someone in the Chinese or Indian underground church movements." (Read sarcasm.) That is probably a wrong response, but I've been feeling like that type of message has been coming from a lot of angles.

Through reading the book I felt like Platt was very repetitive he could have written a booklet,
Maureen Wagner
I was really looking forward to reading this book and went in with some high expectations, only to be disappointed.

To start on a positive note, I will say that I was challenged by this book and really enjoyed some parts. In the beginning, Platt offers some wonderful criticisms of American Christianity, which he argues is often practiced within the sheltered context of privilege with an overemphasis on prosperity and comfort ala the American Dream. The discussion about the importance of stepping
Dave Johnson
First, why is it that many people out there have a hard time with obedience? And why is it that certain ministers and writers have a hard time explaining obedience without dipping into either legalism or radicalism? I understand what it's like to rebel and not wish to obey--I'm human so this is an innate problem with all of us. But I always try to keep my heart open to what the Father has to say in my life, even if I don't like it. And I'm always trying to keep an open heart with teaching that I ...more
So I read this book after reading it's sequel, "Radical Together." As I expected, this is the better book of the two. Unfortunately the two books are too similar for me to enjoy this book as much as I may have otherwise. Here are some of my general thoughts on this book (more reflections than a book review):

1. David Platt manages to write in a humble, and engaging way. He tells stories about what his church is doing and the steps that they are taking to follow Jesus and to accomplish his mission
Rereading for a class.

David Platt argues, convincingly, to the point that you feel like you've been punched in the stomach and you've lost your breath, that the American church has taken the radical message of Jesus in the gospels and traded it for ... respectability.
Radical: Sell all you have, and give the money to the poor, and follow me.
Respectable: Throw some money in the collection plate every week.
"You and I can chose to continue with business as usual in the Christian life and in the chur
I started reading this book based on several people recommending it to me. While Platt does a great job of highlighting the materialism and affluence we live in, I had some issues as to how Platt seemed to present his personal convictions as convictions everyone should have. Throughout the book, there were many instances where it felt like he was trying to "guilt" people to doing what he thought would be the most Christian way of giving radically, generously, and sacrificially, but not taking in ...more
Abbie Riddle
It's the orange book with the upside down face - the eye catching one that makes you wonder what's inside. The picture of the upside down house is exactly the idea of this book - it will turn your ideas, your world, your spiritual house upside down. Those beliefs that have been long ingrained in you since a child sitting on a pew will be tossed out the window. What you have held as the standard for Christianity will be turned on it's head. The standards you held will be lifted to a new level and ...more
Mike Conroy
I wanted to read this book a few years ago and I decided to read it now because of some criticism that was leveled against the "radical movement" and this book in particular. One of the things I appreciated about the criticism was one questions raised: Would people who really loved this book agree with Paul's words, "and to aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands."? (1 Thess 4:11) That is a fair question.

However, I thought this book was pretty balanced.
The author David Platt covers a topic that I have been hoping someone would would write about for a long time! He talks about the complacency of the church today and contrasts it with the passionate churches in other countries suffering from persecution and ready to die for Christ. Our churches today don't have people that are radical followers of Jesus. He also touches on the fact that Christians don't think long-term, but short term. In church, we can listen to a message and decide how to appl ...more
Great book. I thought his assessment of American Christianity was rather accurate and convicting personally. I may not agree with all of his conclusions or methods, but his message (discipling all nations with the gospel) needs to be remembered in our churches. I know I needed this book.
This book has provoked me to deep thought. Am I living for the temporary or for the eternal? For myself or God? It has spurred me on to deeper living and a deeper commitment to the spreading of the Gospel!! I recommend this book to all of my brothers and sisters in Christ!
Read it. Now.
This book is really excellent, especially if you feel that most Christians and Christian environments are too watered down these days. This book helps re-focus you on getting SERIOUS about Jesus -- and also alerts us to the many ways that being American inherently feeds into neglect of Jesus and his mission.

I do have a couple of complaints -- I hate to even call them complaints. But he kind of criticizes people who "just" give money to causes and don't "go" to meet the causes themselves. Ideally
Chris Huff
Dec 19, 2011 Chris Huff rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Christians
In a way, I feel a little weird writing a review of this book. It's not really the type of book to be reviewed. I mean, sure, I could analyze the author's arguments and major premise. I could point out how many of the chapters focus on his own personal experiences and the experiences of people in his church in order to pull our emotional strings, rather than being based solely on the Word of God. I could note that the five elements of his final challenge to be radical mostly equate to doing thin ...more
David Platt spoke at Urbana 2012, and after hearing him speak I wanted to learn more. If you heard him speak at Urbana, skip chapters 1-2, it's the same material.

Positive: The book revolves around the diagnosis of 'materialism' as a deadly sin of the American church. The 'American Dream' has been absorbed by the American Church, and we've made the pursuit of 'bigger and better' the same thing as the pursuit of Jesus' kingdom. We, American Christians, are not entitled to the wealth of resources a
Julie (julie37619)
I've always been bothered by the whole prosperity gospel - if you pray and tithe, God will give you material things. I'm even bothered by the idea that God wants us to be happy. I think God desires our obedience and our holiness a lot more than he desires our happiness. Of course He loves us and what He has for us will always bring us joy, but if you think about Christians in the persecuted church, you realize that they aren't always "happy". Many of them have lost everything they have and some ...more
Eric Chappell
Review: Challenging. While I don't think that I would say things exactly the same way as Platt, I appreciate many of his thoughts. The book was simple and straightforward and dealt principally with Scripture passages. One thing I liked about this book was Platt's refusal to be dogmatic about how radical obedience to the call of Christ might look from Christian to Christian. He appreciates people's life situation, but not at the expense of sell short the call of Christ to go to all nations. This ...more
I like the tag line of the book: Taking back YOUR FAITH from the American Dream.

Platt challenges the entitlement sense of American evangelical Christians that God somehow is obligated to conform His purposes to fit our concept of the American dream.

Platt starts with what radical abandonment means: total, superior and exclusive devotion which is in direct opposition to the magnet of comfort and prosperity. Referencing Dietrich Bonhoeffer, he says, "When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and di
Jan 25, 2011 Elizabeth rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Elizabeth by: Amber
This is a very tough book to rate. The large majority of the book was a rehash (for me) of Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger. Similar to Rich Christians, which I eventually abandoned, this book was very convicting, but also very anxiety inducing since I tend to think I am not really at the stage in life where I can devote large resources of time and energy to unwieldy problems like world hunger. I also find books like this somewhat frustrating, in that I tend to think we, as Christians, someti ...more
While I appreciate some intentions, a desire to think more seriously about the poor, attack the idolatry of the American dream (which ends with dog eat dog) and remove the self from the center of his theology, Platt sums up a lot of what I really don't like in Evangelicalism and I expect irritates many unbelievers.

To be specific Platt doesn't have the gear to do what he wants to do:
*Heap on the Guilt: Platt comes across as a tortured soul, one who preaches at a Megachurch, but feels guilty abou
Once again, I read reviews after reading the book...and frankly, some of them gave me more of a headache than anything Platt wrote. Perhaps when I read these sorts of books I'm not looking for a life-changing experience as much as a different perspective to make me
rethink things in my life that are unsettled. God has been working in my heart about what it truly looks like to Love your Neighbor and Platt's book was a somewhat more conservative perspective (than, say, Shane Claiborne's The Irresis
Garrett Starr
It seems that someone writes a version of this book every five years and it takes the church in the west by storm for the simple reason that most Christians don't read their Bibles. In this volume David Platt basically posits a case for New Testament Christianity. If we Christians would read our Bibles more faithfully, we wouldn't be shocked by the seeming profoundness of this volume and others like it.

I do, however, have a problem with several of the latter chapters of this book as I believe th
Some of my favorite quotes from this book:

In Romans 1:14-15, Paul talks about being a debtor to the nations. He literally, says, "I am in debt to Jews and Gentiles." The language is profound. Paul is saying that he owes a debt to every lost person on the face of the planet. Because he is owned by Christ, he owes Christ to the world.
Every saved person this side of heaven owes the gospel to every lost person this side of hell. We owe Christ to the world-to the least person and to the greatest pers
Natalie Wickham
One of my dearest friends first alerted me to this book in an e-mail, saying, “is SOOOO good.” Imagine my surprise, then, when I walked upstairs later that evening and saw this very book resting on the dining room table! My sister had just finished reviewing it for a magazine and my mom was making her way through its pages. I quickly took the next place in line and was grateful when my turn to read it came around. After becoming the pastor of a mega-church at a young age, David was challenged to ...more
Matt Anderson
Anecdotal to a fault, this book was not nearly as good as others had led me to believe. To be fair, though, Platt did make some thought-provoking points, and did encourage me to change some things in my Christian walk. Unfortunately, it wasn't the life-changing experience that I was expecting based on others' reaction to this book.

On a side note, this was the worst produced audio book that I've ever listened to based on the way that the ends of sentences were continually being cut off. For examp
Matthew Robbins
Right up front, let me say this: I was rocked by David Platt’s new book Radical: Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream more than any other book I’ve read in recent years. There’s very little that most believers don’t already know, but Platt refuses to allow you to ignore that gnawing feeling in your stomach that tells you you’re missing what God’s called you to. It made me uncomfortable, challenged my thoughts and beliefs about how I’m living my life, and inspired me to more. He’s bibli ...more
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Radical by David Platt - Biggest take away yet! 2 32 Mar 08, 2014 06:53AM  
Christian Fiction...: Non-fiction Group Read - January 8 58 Jan 16, 2012 04:35PM  
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Dr. David Platt, Pastor of The Church at Brook Hills, is deeply devoted to Christ and His Word. David's first love in ministry is disciple-making—the simple biblical model of multiplying the gospel by sharing the love of Christ, showing the life of Christ, and teaching the Word of Christ in all nations. He has traveled extensively to teach the Bible and church leaders throughout the United States ...more
More about David Platt...
Follow Me: A Call to Die. A Call to Live. Radical Together What Did Jesus Really Mean When He Said Follow Me? The Radical Question: What is Jesus Worth To You? A Radical Idea: Unleashing the People of God for the Purpose of God

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“Radical obedience to Christ is not easy... It's not comfort, not health, not wealth, and not prosperity in this world. Radical obedience to Christ risks losing all these things. But in the end, such risk finds its reward in Christ. And he is more than enough for us.” 210 likes
“We are settling for a Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves.” 122 likes
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