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Naked Gospel [Paperback]

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Item Description...
Spiritual growth doesn?t result from church activity. And that?s just the first of the things we need to unlearn. This unapologetic book will challenge your mind and stir you to re-examine everything you thought you already knew.

Publishers Description
I found myself lying on the floor of my apartment, sobbing for hours on end: God, I m doing everything I m supposed to do, and I still don t feel closer to you. In fact, I feel worse than ever How could this have gone wrong? I can t see any way out. Help me. As a university student, Andrew Farley found himself physically and emotionally addicted to street evangelism and Bible study. Yet despite his fervid behavior, he knew something was missing. That something was an understanding of the gospel that is stripped of the compromises and cliches of the modern church. The Naked Gospel finds friends among those who are burned out on experience-chasing, ceremonialism, or legalism. It attacks churchy jargon and powerless ideas and puts forth a message that is simple but life-changing. With a fresh take on Scripture and unapologetic style, The Naked Gospel will challenge you and stir you to re-examine everything you thought you already knew."

Item Specifications...

Pages   237
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.4" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.9"
Weight:   0.65 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Aug 30, 2009
Publisher   Zondervan Publishing
ISBN  0310293065  
EAN  9780310293064  
UPC  025986293062  

Availability  0 units.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Important for EVERYONE to hear  May 18, 2010
The message of The Naked Gospel by Andrew Farley isn't a new one, but it's certainly one that isn't always preached clearly. As a woman who personally struggles with legalism and a sense of earning God's love and forgiveness and approval, I experienced a sense of relief as I read through the pages of this book. I have always known that Jesus' blood covered my sins, but I still felt like I needed to "do my best" and "make God proud." And if I sinned (which is daily . . . for everyone), I had better make sure those sins got confessed ASAP, and I'd better try harder to do the right thing next time. Effort, effort, effort. Thus telling God that His Son's blood must not've been quite enough.

But Farley reminds us, "Our forgiveness and cleansing are solely because of the finished work of Jesus Christ." It is FINISHED. Once-and-for-all forgiveness.

As I read his words, I could really feel the burden being lifted from Farley's shoulders. He dealt with being driven by a guilt-based faith for many, many years, which only led to depression. When he discovered the LIFE that God intended to give us through His Son's sacrifice, Farley began to experience freedom and God's truly unconditional love.

"Jesus exposed the futility of life under law," Farley explains. No one can keep every letter of it, and God doesn't expect us to. He simply desires for us to love Him and accept His grace and forgiveness. He doesn't want us to get down on ourselves when we sin; He wants us to simply desire what He desires. And since, as Christians, He truly does live in us, His desires become our desires. If we do not desire what He desires, then He is not in us.

"The message of 'Jesus plus nothing' from start to finish is often too humbling for us to swallow. Instead, we opt for performance hoops to jump through in order to impress God . . . The secret is that grace deactivates our pride. Removing the law from our lives means our self-effort is no longer prodded to control behavior. The law excites human effort. It encourages us to depend on resources outside of Christ. But unconditional acceptance deactivates human effort and allows the Holy Spirit to be all that he wants to be through us." I love this. This is the freedom God intended.

It is vital for everyone--Believers and non-Believers alike--to be exposed to The Naked Gospel. The author's fervor is contagious; his words are well-written; and his message is clear (as is the book cover--ha!) and well-delivered. Read it. And share it.
Every Christian Should read the Naked Gospel.  May 14, 2010
Simple, If you are a Christian, read The Naked Gospel and be set free from Religion.
The Naked Gospel?  May 10, 2010
Disclosure: This book was provided to me free of charge by The Ooze Viral Bloggers.

I recently received a copy of Andrew Farley's book The Naked Gospel: The Truth You May Never Hear in Church. The back jacket alone was enough to pique my interest:

"Jesus plus nothing. 100% natural. No additives. It's the truth you may never hear in church. The Naked Gospel is a chapter-by-chapter assault on the churchy jargon and double-talk of our day. It puts forth a message that is simple but life changing. With a fresh take on Scripture and an unapologetic style, The Naked Gospel will challenge you to reexamine everything you thought you already knew."

Jesus plus nothing? An assault on churchy jargon? Be prepared to reexamine everything you think you know? Understandably, I was stoked about reading this book.

In the end, the book failed to deliver on the back jacket's promises.

The Naked Gospel is a good -- not great -- read. Farley's primary conviction is to purge legalism -- in all its forms -- from the Christian faith. The author aims to do this by demonstrating the ineptitude of the "Old Covenant" and the complete superiority of the New Covenant founded by Christ. Beginning with his own upbringing, Farley confronts the myriad paths we seek to earn our salvation by adding something (evangelism, Bible study, prayer, etc.) to the Jesus = Salvation equation. But, as the bold font on the jacket flap declares, the "naked gospel" is Jesus + nothing.

What's surprising, then, is how much of an emphasis Farley places on the words of the NT epistles. Farley posits that most of Christ's teachings were addressed to "Old Covenant" thinkers and the purpose of these teachings was to demonstrate to the people their need for a Savior. This diminishes the teachings of Jesus -- in particular, the Sermon on the Mount -- as archaic and mostly irrelevant to Christian experience; conversely, it elevates the NT epistles as the clearest representation of Gospel-life.

And this is where I fundamentally disagree with Farley. I would argue (vehemently, in fact) that Christ stands as the full revelation of God's will (Col. 1.19). Christ stands in tremendous continuity with the OT law and prophets; in fact, He claims to be their embodied fulfillment (Matt. 5.17). Farley never deals with this in a satisfactory manner, instead building a case for the inferiority of the Old Testament covenant. For the author, the gravity point in Scripture is found in the NT epistles (in particular, the book of Hebrews). But this is yet another point where I disagree with Farley. I understand Christ as inaugurating the Kingdom reign of God through His ministry (Matthew 4.17; Mark 1.15). Jesus himself claims that His teaching regarding the Kingdom of God is "good news" (Luke 4.43), the very reason He was sent by God. For Farley, the only portion of Scripture that seems important is the material that takes place after the resurrection. (Nevermind the fact that the Gospels were written AFTER the resurrection.)

This is not to say that the text is without benefit. Farley demonstrates the sufficiency of Christ's death to bring about reconciliation and atonement for those who believe. Readers will come away with a renewed understanding of the nature of the New Covenant. And Farley's honesty about his own struggles with legalism are helpful and they give the rest of his arguments an air of authenticity. But these merits must be held in tension with what I would consider to be considerable weaknesses to Farley's presentation of the Gospel.
The Naked Gospel  May 4, 2010
I don't know why, but I wasn't expecting much when I started reading this book. However, it has been a very pleasant surprise. The author has opened my eyes to so many things I should have known all along. Needless to say, I have had some special "Duh" moments.

I have been reading it for a couple weeks now, but I can't seem to read very long and I have to stop and think about what the author says. More than a dozen times I have set the book down and said to myself, "If this is true then that means...".

Savoring this book as an experience is an example of why I love books. I recommend it!
Great Read!  May 1, 2010
What a great read! I received this book through an offer to receive the book from the publisher for free in return for writing a review on my blog. This one has been a pleasure to do just that! I am by no means anti-religious, and I was fearly this book would be either dry or unrealistically negative. It was neither. In fact, I found it refreshing and practical. I liked the mix of some personal stories and applications with a TON of scripture quotes. Unlike many Christian authors, Farley used seldom used quotes, put them into context and made me feel he really researched what he was saying. I didn't feel preached to at all, and I appreciate that in a book. I would recommend this book to anyone who was seeking an alternate way to look at Churches and religion. Andrew Farley doesn't promise you the answer, but he definitely offers the reader a new view. Check out the website for more information at [...]

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