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The Christian Atheist: Believing in God but Living As If He Doesn't Exist
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The Christian Atheist: Believing in God but Living As If He Doesn't Exist

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  6,931 Ratings  ·  381 Reviews
“The more I looked, the more I found Christian Atheists everywhere.”

Former Christian Atheist Craig Groeschel knows his subject all too well. After over a decade of successful ministry, he had to make a painful self admission: although he believed in God, he was leading his church like God didn’t exist.

To Christians and non-Christians alike, to the churched and the unchurch
Hardcover, 241 pages
Published March 20th 2010 by Zondervan (first published 2010)
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Robert This is a good book. I haven't finished it so far, but the author provides a devotional in the framework of different ways in which we Christians act…moreThis is a good book. I haven't finished it so far, but the author provides a devotional in the framework of different ways in which we Christians act like atheists. Each chapter focuses on one area Christians can act like atheists. The framework is engaging, and the author also provides a strong dose of laugh-out-loud humorous anecdotes, making it a funny and engaging read as well as a devotional chalk full of biblical depth and practical application.(less)

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Mar 21, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: kookey-kristians
Meet Craig Groeschel, he regularly breaks 40% of the Ten Commandments:

Craig hearts God, hanging out at the gym, and trying desperately to launch himself into the stratosphere of Christian High-Living, into the deluxe apartment in the sky that the Christian Superstars like Chapman, Cloud, Olsteen, O'Martin and Warren reside in. The Christian writers who were able to come up with a catchphrase or title and just milk the shit out that bitch for all that it's worth.

I suspected this when I first saw
Jun 08, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book cuts through my thick feel-good hide and leaves me out to bleed - every drop of guilty blood, guilty of feeling like a Christian but not acting like one. I suspect many are like me: believing in God, wanting to please Him, even holding His words deep in our hearts - yet not doing 1% of what we're supposed to do if we claim to be His followers. Why do I cringe whenever I hear the word "tithe" (giving 10% of your salary to church)? Why do I pursue happiness as if it is the real god? Why ...more
Kelly Belvis
Aug 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took me a little while to appreciate how helpful "The Christian Athiest" by Craig Groeschel would be. At first it seemed like a straight forward treatise on common themes: forgiveness, faith, worry, money, problems with church. Groeschel asserts that while we may very well be Christians we often conduct our lives and especially our inadequacies as if we were athiests. The standout here is that Groeschel openly shares some of his biggest failures. I immediately wanted to embrace his advice bec ...more
Kathleen Fuller
Jan 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book was interesting--on the surface there was nothing new presented as far as the gospel and living a Christian life. But it is one of the most challenging books I've ever read. I didn't realize it, but I'm a Christian atheist (and working to change that). Through the whole book I was nodding my head and saying "that's me, that's me, that's me". And I'm not happy about that. What I found most helpful though were the personal stories, or rather failures and confessions, by the author who is ...more
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was ok
I don't disagree with most of what Groeschel has to say, but this book was very disappointing.
Instead of addressing the topic in an insightful way, this book reads like any other self help book with verses from the Bible and Christian themes thrown in every so often.
I can't stand the way these kinds of books are written. They follow the same structure chapter after chapter, starting with a story, then moving on to some kind of lesson, then failing to live up to that lesson, then another story,
Clark Goble
Jul 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Author Craig Groeschel coins the term “Christian Atheist” to denote a believer who isn’t living his or her life in a way that exhibits that belief. Far from judgmental, this book is an exhortation for the reader to experience a fullness in their relationship with God. Groeschel uses several anecdotes from his own life to explore such weighty topics as shame, love, prayer, worry, and evangelism. Groeschel’s work reads almost like a biography documenting his own journey from Christian atheist to m ...more
Jon Håversen
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
En meget flott bok jeg hadde veldig glede av å lese.
Lettlest bok som fremdeles er utfordrende når det gjelder kristen livspraksis. Boken tar opp temaer som mange kristne vil kjenne seg igjen, jeg kjente meg iallfall igjen i flere av punktene og ble utfordret. Vil anbefale alle kristne venner og lese denne. Kanskje aller mest vil jeg anbefale til de som er langt inne i akademisk apologetikk, men alle har godt av å la seg utfordre av disse punktene.

Rent teologisk er det jo alltid noen småting man
Panda Incognito
Although this book did an adequate job of pointing out the differences between genuine Christians and "believers" who have not truly experienced God, it fell short of facilitating genuine heart-change. Since the book was targeted towards nominal Christians, I tried to read it with that mindset, taking in the parts that applied to me, but mostly thinking through it theoretically. The further I got into the book, the more I sensed that something was missing: the gospel. Though the author explained ...more
Jun 24, 2012 rated it did not like it
I always find it interesting to read or listen to fundamentalists talk about how people other than themselves do not have faith pure enough to get into heaven. This whole book judges the faith of other people for not being fundamentalist Christians. The author has a discontinuous interpretation of the Bible which he fails to effectively express in his narrative. Really, this book is for people who already believe in God, but aren't all that active in their own faith. It is also for privileged, m ...more
While the aim and purpose of this book seems genuine and honorable, I still have many problems with it. (I'll try to keep this review a mix of positive and negative points.)

I admire Groeschel's attempts to highlight the fact that there are many Christians in name only -- those who speak the truths of Christianity superficially, but don't live by it in practice. But I think the term "Christian Atheist" is a very inaccurate way to describe this phenomenon. He should have chosen his words more care
Chauncey Lattimer
I know that you are probably getting tired of me saying the same word frequently, but Wow! I barely sat the book down from the initiation of the read to completion. Craig Groeschel has written a very transparent look into how we are so often guilty of not living up to what we know to be Scriptural. With a mixture of humor, personal memoir, experience, and solid biblical instruction, Groeschel walks us through the many ways in which we are not living like we truly believe in the God who cares and ...more
Sep 13, 2010 rated it it was ok
I had really big hopes for this book. It has a catchy title and a topic that I'm passionate about. The author has an easy to read style of writing. Unfortunately, the author lost me when every single chapter was turned into a sermon. I finally just started skimming through each chapter until I got to the last one - the one I was really hoping would be worth reading - "When you believe in God but not in His Church". Unfortuntately this chapter fell as flat as the others before it. Instead of addr ...more
Jen Edwards
Jan 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
After taking some time off of Christianbooks since reading Radical, which totally scared the crap out of me and was incredibility convicting, I have picked up another book. I'm now reading The Christian Atheist.

This book still has the potential to be convicting, but it's not so in your face about what a bad Christian you are from the get go as Radical was. Seriously, I thought I was going to hell after reading chapter one of that book. Here is a sneak peak of The Chr
Thomas Foster Foster
Dec 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
I definitely believe in God and I definitely have set limits on where God is and is not welcome in my life and how far he can go!

This book helps me consider my position and my response - to live as though I really believed in God for every area of my life.

So as I reflect I can then see I have 3 options:

1. I can deny I'm making any compromises in how I follow Jesus.

2. I can accept I'm making compromises, but sort of pragmatically refuse to do anything about it (none of us are perfect after all an
Dec 31, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: faith
"Are you a Christian Atheist? Do you believe in God but live as if he doesn't exist?" --Craig Groeschel

One of my friends posted a picture of this book on Instagram earlier this year and noted that it was a thoughtful read and a book that she had referenced several times. I had to read it because I thought perhaps I am a Christian Atheist.

The Christian Atheist was written by a minister and former party guy who shares his path to God.
In every chapter the author provided an example of a real stor
Chloe Hawker
Jan 05, 2013 rated it liked it
For about the first seven chapters of this book, I was completely unimpressed. I think this book, to a great extent, talks about what many other books of its kind discuss in much the same way. There is very little here that's new. However, three chapters did get to me: the chapter on worry (chapter 8), the chapter on money (chapter 10), and the chapter on the church (chapter 12). These three chapters offer a higher level of insight than the rest of the book does. I'd probably only give the rest ...more
Jennifer Pritchard
Gave me a lot to think about. I really liked the chapters on prayer and worry. But some of the chapters left me lacking. Was this a suppose to be a "how to" book? I was never quiet convinced and wondered at some of the points he was trying to make.
Lizzy Bueckert
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the first of this author that I've read. I loved it! Spoke to my heart all the way through. Made me face hard questions and left me inspired.
Sep 07, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like the fit of the author's style to the topic of the book. Essentially, the author explains for each topic of "disconnection," how professing Christians act more like an atheist than a faithful believer.

These topics include various matters where our human condition and culture keep us from fully trusting the Father to meet our needs and desires.

What makes the book shine is the author's transparent testimony of failures. Given the cultural challenges of our day, churchgoers are drawn to authe
Russell Hayes
Sep 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: christian-books
This was a pretty good motivational book to put philosophy into action. It is easy to intellectually agree with an idea, but to take a worldview and integrate it into one's daily actions, thoughts, and desires, takes real sophistication. Christianity teaches that one day we will have to stand before God and reckon every moment of our lives and dollar we spend to him; that we are to turn the other cheek and love all enemies; offer our lives as living sacrifices daily to him; forsake everything we ...more
Mar 31, 2012 rated it liked it
As someone who has lived as a "Christian Athiest" for period of time and has been submerged in an environment filled with them, I would recommend this book for any young Christians who are looking to take their faith to the next step. While it starts off slow for the first few chapters, it eventually finds its rhythm and grows stronger as the book goes on. It is a very practical and easy read, as Groeschel gives his own personal life experiences to support his points.

If you are looking for a boo
May 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Thought provoking, knee bending, and prayer inducing. I needed this book and am thrilled that God brought it to me through the public library in Salt Lake City, UT. This was like an examine, soul searching and life altering. i will be buying a copy so I can look back, and slo lend it to folks who express discontent with how beliefs and life fail to align. It is also noteworthy that the scripture quoted throughout the book has become a study and memorization project. I started looking up the vers ...more
Roger Miller
Aug 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: christian-living
Craig Groeschel has great insight into how the American Church can say they believe in God, but live as if he does not exist. He terms this as a Christian Athiest! Chapter after Chapter he made me squirm at how hypocritical my actions are. The afterword with three lines to cross was an extreme challenge, that I am trying to undertake. A must read for those who are seeking to follow Jesus in this American culture.
Sandy Sandmeyer
Mar 31, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone not living in the fullness of God's love or walking wholeheartedly in the Christian walk
Recommended to Sandy by: Chad Missildine
Shelves: favorites
I would highly recommend this book for every Christian. It would be a great book for a small group study or for a teaching series for a pastor. It is a shocking reminder that we are such flawed creatures and that we need to be relying solely on Jesus Christ.

I won a copy of this book through, so I was surprised when I get a message from @chadmissildine on Facebook to ask for my address.
Kerry Lofton
Jul 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another great book by Craig Groeschel! Good wisdom whether you've been a Christian for years or you just came into faith. His words are piercing and convicting yet so necessary. Would recommend it to anyone, even those who are are unsure of what to believe about Jesus. This book will leave no stone unturned and no questions unanswered
Janet Maisel
Apr 22, 2010 is currently reading it
No matter now long you have been walking with the Lord, it never hurts to go back to the basics. Why do I beleive what I beleive? We all have a point of reference as to where our walk began. this book reminds me that I often do not live like I believe God. I believe IN him but do I live like an atheist not believeing Him for His promises. Good so far.
Aug 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
This light read makes some heavy topics easier to digest. It would be awesome if we could all put these ideas into practice immediately, but it takes time to surrender each area of our lives to fully serve God.
May 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: faith
This may answer some questions - or validate beliefs - of those who see Christians as hypocrites. For a book on Christianity - or what's not Christianity - it's very interesting, very readable, and very easy to work into a short study.
K.A. Thederahn
Jan 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book is a good starting point for belief and complete surrender to Christ. I've been a fan of Craig Groeschel as a pastor so reading this was a good experience. If you need to start getting into the hobo of reading, this is a nice place to start
Amy Young
Sep 02, 2012 rated it liked it
A good book for a quick check -- are my behaviors consistent with my beliefs? (Of course there will be areas it's not. Good to bring some of those to light and offer them up.)
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Craig Groeschel (born December 2, 1967) is the founder and senior pastor of, a church with thirteen locations in six states. He is married with six children and lives in Edmond, Oklahoma, a suburb of Oklahoma City, where is based.

Groeschel was born in Houston, Texas and grew up in southern Oklahoma, attending Ardmore High School. He attended Oklahoma City University, a
More about Craig Groeschel...

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“God doesn't want us to be happy when it causes us to do something wrong or unwise” 16 likes
“Shame usually follows a pattern—a cycle of self-recrimination and lies that claims life after life. First, we experience an intensely painful event. Second, we believe the lie that our pain and failure is who we are—not just something we’ve done, or had done to us—and we experience shame. And finally, our feelings of shame trap us into thinking that we can never recover—that, in fact, we don’t even deserve to.” 10 likes
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