The Irresistible Revolution

“… the great tragedy in the church is not that rich Christians do not care about the poor but that rich Christians do not know the poor.” – Shane Claiborne, Irresistible Revolution.

Recently I finished reading Shane Claiborne’s book  Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical.  I found it incredibly refreshing.  I got the book when I was talking with a friend about social activism in the church, and how we as believers ought to be voices in our society against injustice – whether it’s homelessness, poverty, human trafficking or any of a variety of other social ills.  To which my friend replied, “Have you read Irresistible Revolution?” and promptly gave me a copy.

The basic thrust of this book is a call to the Church at large to return to our first love, Jesus, and our true purpose, which is to establish a “different kind of kingdom”, not church institutions that follow the pattern of this world, but communities that operate upside down from the ways of this world, where people really take Jesus at his word, and the first become last and the last become first.  The book is a call to a grassroots movement of love, community and radical servanthood.  It paints a dream of a different kind of Church, “a people who believe so much in another world that they cannot help but begin enacting it now.”

I recommend this book for anyone who is tired of church as usual, anyone who may be wondering where Jesus has gotten to in the midst of our modern American church life.

Caution: read this book at your own risk.

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8 responses to “The Irresistible Revolution

  1. I recommend this book to as many people as possible! Reading Shane’s story has been exciting and gives me the courage to live as an ordinary radical.

  2. Read the next book too.
    “Jesus For President”.

  3. I’ve started “Jesus for President” and I went to a “Jesus for President” event. I liked the event, but I got a little bored with the style of the book (not the content). What bored me? I think I found it wordy and bombastic in style. I may finish it yet, but so far the book just hasn’t gripped me. Again I know there is good content in there because I was inspired by the content during the event, I just feel with the book I have to wade through so much rhetoric to get to the meat.

    You might also enjoy “At the Margins” in my blogroll. The author is someone in the D.C. area who is involved with “intentional community” and “the new monasticism”. He helped organize the “Jesus for President” event that I attended in the D.C. area.

  4. Hey Maggie! I think you’d like Roger Williams, too. You ought to do some research on his life and thought. A gold mine. I hope to read a copy of his works on liberty of conscience soon, as well as a better biography than the Internet.

  5. I read the book a two years back and it changed my outlook of things, especially the call for us to see the world or society beyond the four walls to the church building (our comfort zone). I would like to recommend Ron Sider’s books as well: ‘Good News, Good Works’ (I read this) and the classic ‘Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger’ (planning to read it).

  6. Dave, thanks for the recommendation. I already did a little research. I remember reading about him years ago, when I was reading about the founding of Rhode Island, but have never read anything written by him. Should be interesting reading.

    Jon, haven’t read anything by Ron Sider yet. The title of the second one you mention sounds especially intriguing.

  7. I read the book too and changed me alot. Really encouraged me to live life to the fullest and made me see that we can make a different after all. 🙂

  8. Rachel,
    Me too! Thanks for leaving your thoughts.

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