Could not resolve host: 86-edu.allmediacloud.com Get a free copy of Jesus Manifesto by @LenSweet @FrankViola | Live Intentionally

Get a free copy of Jesus Manifesto by @LenSweet @FrankViola

jesus manifesto book by leonard sweet and frank violaToday we’re reviewing, discussing, and giving away a copy of Jesus Manifesto by Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola.  Keep reading to learn how you can win a free copy.

In Jesus Manifesto, Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola seek to do as the sub-title suggests: restore the supremacy and sovereignty of Jesus Christ.

The premise of the book is that many who call themselves Christians have allowed things of God to become more important that Jesus.  Many people pursue knowledge, accurate theological doctrine, serving, social justice, worship music, leadership, church-building, or morality in the name of Jesus rather than seeking Jesus himself.

Jesus Manifesto seeks to stir Christians to place Jesus front and center in their lives by painting a beautiful, awe-inspiring picture of Him.  If we seek Him and love Him, everything else in life will fall into place.  Not that life will be perfect or comfortable, but when we know Jesus, love Jesus, and focus on Jesus, everything else pales in comparison – success, failure, possessions, pain, even death.  All of those things seem insignificant when our focus is on the infinite awesomeness of Jesus.

Favorite Quotes

  • Christianity is not an ideology or a philosophy.  Neither is it a new type of morality, social ethic, or worldview.  Christianity is the “good news” that beauty, truth, and goodness are found in a person. (P xxii)
  • God is not so much about fixing things that have gone wrong in our lives as finding us in our brokenness and giving us Christ. (P 2)
  • Sadly, many of us today combat problems and erroneous teachings with laws, rules, religious duty – and the mother of all religious tools: guilt. (P 25)
  • When things go wrong, it’s not because we don’t understand certain doctrines or fail to follow particular commands.  It’s because we lave lost our “first love”… or never had it in the first place. (P 39)
  • There is much more in Christ than we have ever imagined… He will never grow old or stale. (P 40)
  • To develop spiritually, then, is to learn My Son. (P 48)
  • If you will sink your roots deep in Christ, who is your life, you will not be able to stop the fruit from coming forth. (P 58)
  • The commandments are paper handcuffs compared to Jesus’ love strands. (P 65)
  • The road to truth is surrounded by a ditch on either side. (P 79)
  • “Let your religion be less of a theory and more of a love affair. –G.K. Chesterton
  • “The riddles of God are more satisfying than the solutions of man.” –G.K. Chesterton
  • The more you know the more you know how little you know. –Clifford Scott (P 88)
  • Without the Way, there is no going, without the Truth, there is no knowing, Without the Life, there is no living. –Thomas a Kempis (P 90)
  • May we, therefore, stop seeking “things” and instead lay hold of the “real thing” – Jesus. (P 92)
  • It’s all too possible to serve the “god” of serving Jesus as opposed to serving Him out of an enraptured heart. (P 94)
  • Get a fresh glimpse of your incomparable, Lord, and you will be emboldened to stop spending your life on yourself. (P 102)
  • Jesus did not come to make bad people good. He came to make dead people live. (P 105)
  • The more you judge, the less you love. (P 112)
  • Too many Christians want to change the world not because they love the world but because they hate the world. (P 118)
  • The “Christian life” is impossible.  It’s only Him-possible. (P 127)
  • Jesus desires friends over servants.  He desires love over servitude. (P 149)

Sorry, I know I over-did the quotes. There is just so much great wisdom in this book, I couldn’t help myself.

Personal Thoughts

As Sweet and Viola write, “The road to truth is surrounded by a ditch on either side.”  It would be hard to argue with the premise of this book – that many of us who call ourselves Christians have gotten caught up in pursuing the things of Christ rather than Christ himself.  We see it everywhere around us.

I see it within myself.

The only criticism I have of Jesus Manifesto, it’s that the authors don’t engage the reader on a personal level.  You really don’t get an idea of who Len and Frank are, how Jesus has revealed himself to them along the journey of their lives, or how their lives have become an incarnation of Jesus.  That may be intentional. In fact, they may be proud of the fact that the book is all about Jesus and not about them at all.  But I like to understand where an author is coming from.  I like to see that an author is not just speaking theoretically but from experience.

Never the less, I whole-heartedly recommend Jesus Manifesto.  What could be more important than a call make the main thing the main thing?  A call to Christians to make Christianity about Christ?  I love the fact that while Sweet and Viola do talk about many of the ditches Christians fall into on either side of the path of truth, the book is not a rant, bashing misguided Christians.  Jesus Manifesto lifts up Jesus in as much beauty and glory as paper and ink can give Him, and asks, “Why would you love anyone or anything more?”

If you call yourself a Christian, this may be the most important book you ever read (other than the Bible.)

Discussion

  1. Have you ever found yourself wanting the blessings of God – inner peace, eternal life, a happy family life, or anything else – more than Jesus himself?
  2. Have you ever found yourself making something of God – doctrine, social justice, music, serving, or anything else – more important than Jesus himself?
  3. Have you ever found yourself trying harder to be like Jesus – a nice person, more moral, a “better Christian” – rather than spending time with Jesus, getting to know him, falling in love with him, and allowing Him to flow through your heart, your attitude, and your actions?

Get a Free Book

If you’d like a free copy of Jesus Manifesto, all you have to do is

  1. Retweet this post or share it on Facebook, and
  2. Post a meaningful comment to this post that contributes to the conversation (include your Facebook or Twitter usename in your comment so I can connect your comment to your share/tweet).

One person will be randomly selected the afternoon of Wednesday 6/2 to receive a free copy.

Jesus Manifesto will be on special discount from Amazon.com, TODAY June 1st, the date of the release. You can learn more by going to theJesusManifesto.com. Endorsements by Matt Chandler, Ed Young, Jack Hayford, Shane Claiborne, Ed Stetzer, Reggie McNeal, Mark Batterson, Margaret Feinberg, Alan Hirsch, Anne Jackson, Tommy Barnett, and others.

32 Responses to “Get a free copy of Jesus Manifesto by @LenSweet @FrankViola”

  1. Great Review! Please be sure to check out my LIVE Twitterview with Frank Viola (@FrankViola)today at 12:00 PM EST on Twitter. Just search the hashtag #TVjm. You’ll find it there! @chaordicjeff

  2. Thanks for the review. Even as I fight the urge of just sitting in a pew, I also find that it would be easy to react in such a way that I serve for the sake of serving, and not for the sake of Focusing and Worshiping my savior. It sounds like this book help to reveal to me the glory of our Risen Lord.

    Twitter: rushardin

  3. I have really been trying to put into words what I think this book is conveying.

    Serving God should be an outpouring of your love, not an attempt to find Him.

    So often these days, the cart has been put before the horse.

  4. This looks like a very interesting book!! There are so many of us who have gotten caught up in the action of being a Christian that we’ve forgotten Who it is we’re representing. Looks like a very good read!!

  5. Bethany Swickrath Reply June 1, 2010 at 2:30 pm

    Too many Christians want to change the world not because they love the world but because they hate the world. (P 118) That quote alone is enough to intrigue me about this book. I am continually amazed at the amount of hate that Christians (myself included unfortunately) spew into the world.

    • Bethany, thanks for highlighting that quote. I think we could do a whole post/discussion about whether we as Christians want to change the world because we love people or because we want to make it more comfortable for ourselves. It’s a topic worth further discussion.

  6. Wow! I can’t wait to get my hands and eyes on this book. I have done public evangelism at sporting events and have seen the passion that many fans display. It has been my feeling for a few years now that this “Christianity” thing needs to be fueled by love/passion similar to rabid sports fans. Think about it. No one has to tell a fan to paint his face or body in team colors and go shirtless in freezing temperatures. There is no shame in wearing clothing declaring their team, they read box scores for crying out loud. Some paint their vehicles and on and on. It doesn’t come from a list of rules, it comes from passion.

    • Hey David, I would love to see more Christians openly passionate about Jesus. But one of the negative aspects of some sports fans is that many of them find their sense of belonging and acceptance by identifying themselves with something that’s popular.

      Similarly there actually are a lot of Christians who seem to express their allegiance to Christianity in a way that’s similar to sports fans. They wear Christian tshirts, buy Christian music, go to Christian concerts, put the fish symbol on the back of their SUV. For many, it’s more a way to express, “I belong. I’ve been accepted in the church club.”

      So, let’s just make sure we’re spurring people on towards passion for Christ and not passion for belonging to a Christian clique.

  7. Thanks for this post and for introducing this book! My husband and I are on a mission to live by faith, but the road hasn’t been perfect for me. I still struggle with praying for the blessings of God and seeking more ways to serve God… and yet how much time do I spend just listening? I’m still learning how to just “be” with Jesus — get to know him and allow him to flow through my life the way he wants. Praying for guidance along the way and trying to share with others as I go.

  8. Thanks for this review Paul. I think it is easy to get caught up in worldly things especially when we are not focused on Jesus. I believe when we all need a call to action, me especially.

  9. Oh my goodness, I think this may just be the book I’ve been hunting for. So many things have clicked just by reading this review. Thank you! I will be retweeting! I’m @unscriptedlife

  10. I used to pray so differently. It wasn’t until not too long ago that I realized my definition of fixing things and God’s definition of fixing things that have gone wrong are not one in the same. For me personally, I could really see that I was growing in my faith in Jesus Christ when I started being able to see the difference.

    God is not so much about fixing things that have gone wrong in our lives as finding us in our brokenness and giving us Christ. (P 2)

  11. Hey there – I love it when I stumble across things that echo the journey I have already been on. I am preaching the next 2 sundays on getting back to the simplicity of following Jesus. The revolutionary life of following a man, not just being a part of a moral and nice religious culture…

    Thanks for the opportunity to share a bit of life with you all – and to realise that there are others in this world who find the status quo a little unsettling! 🙂

    Blessings from New Zealand!

    Al Ronberg (@alronberg)

  12. What a great review. I fully believe one of the biggest challenges of today’s church is the balance of trying to be plugged in to a local body and serve God’s people while not allowing the busyness of that to interfere with the vital personal relationship that we must retain with Christ Himself. I can’t wait to read this book and I believe it could be a tool for a great awakening in the church.

  13. When things go wrong, it’s not because we don’t understand certain doctrines or fail to follow particular commands. It’s because we lave lost our “first love”… or never had it in the first place. (P 39) So, so true. My denomination is pretty focused on “right doctrine”. Don’t get me wrong — I think it’s important to have a good grasp of solid, biblical doctine. However, when I recently went through a very dry period spiritually and professionally, it wasn’t because my doctrine was faulty but because I had ignored my first love. Only when I turned that around (and I can’t even take credit for that) were there springs of refreshing water again. @allenkenya

    • Bob, thanks for sharing that. I think a lot of people can relate to the experience that you went through.

  14. Bethany’s comment in which she cited the quote “Too many Christians want to change the world not because they love the world but because they hate the world” led me to write a full-blown post to discuss it:

    Many Christians want to change the world not because they love it but because they hate it.
    http://www.liveintentionally.org/2010/06/02/many-christians-want-to-change-the-world-not-because-they-love-it-but-because-they-hate-it/

    I’ll be announcing the winner of the free copy of Jesus Manifesto in a couple of hours. In the mean time, you can buy a copy today on Amazon for 40%. If you win the free copy you can give it away. 🙂

  15. The quote that resonants with me is “If you will sink your roots deep in Christ, who is your life, you will not be able to stop the fruit from coming forth.” (P 58) Too many times I have tried to work toward producing the fruit instead of sinking my roots deep in Christ. As a pastor that is especially tempting at times, there is so much good work to do. But my relationship with Jesus must be more important than the work. –Richard

    Twitter: @rlsipes

  16. Congrats to Jen Johns aka @GoingByFaith who has won the free copy of Jesus Manifesto!

    Thanks to everyone who commented, tweeted, and shared this review. The conversation doesn’t have to stop here. Please continue to share your thoughts.

    I believe you can still pick up a copy on Amazon for 40% off, but that price won’t last long. Here’s a link: http://amzn.to/beBYy7

    After you read the book, I’d love for you come back, post a comment, and let me know what you thought about it.

  17. Congratulations Jen Johns aka @GoingByFaith

  18. Thank you so much! I’m looking forward to reading the book with my husband. All of the comments here have been insightful. Thanks again for this post Paul.

  19. My favorite quote from the book: “…the Christian withholds final judgment of whether it’s a “good day” or a “bad day” until all the days are in.”

  20. Paul,
    my take so far is this:

    You and I live in a world where lemonade is made with artificial flavors and furniture polish is made with real lemons. And sometimes, we as Christians follow that same logic…we assume Christ has called us to a thousand things that substitute for his real calling—to Himself. More than the ‘imitation’ of Christ, I need to be rebooted with the ‘implantation’ and ‘impartation’ of Him. Christ Himself is the teaching that trumps all others.

    great post, btw!

    tom

    twitter.com/tomcottar

  21. Thanks for your comment, Tom. That’s exactly it.

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