Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Pagan Christianity (book review)

Pagan Christianity: Exposing the Roots of Our Church Practices Pagan Christianity: Exposing the Roots of Our Church Practices by Frank Viola

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
i liked the historical documentation of the beginnings and traditions of the church. the book brought about some interesting conversations with others, as well. but by-and-large, this book sort of sucker-punches the church, brings it to its knees and then gets in its face and taunts it.

ok. maybe that was a harsh analogy, but Viola and Barna spare no punches.

what i value from this book is that it asks questions that nobody ever asks. questions like, why do pastors wear robes? and why do choirs sing? and why do we tithe? they then answer said questions with historical information. the end conclusion: there are a lot of things that we do that aren't in the scriptures. many Christian practices and traditions have 'secular' pagan roots. but in the end, how much of it really matters?

i actually found this to be an easy read and i finished it in a week. it tended to get me worked up over some of the things pointed out. then, after a few days, it just didn't matter that much.

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Jilliefl1 said...

Barna/Viola's "Pagan Christianity" wasn't a stand-alone book. The sequel is called "Reimagining Church", it's the constructive part of the discussion. He also has a new book that's the practical follow-up to both books. It's called "Finding Organic Church." Viola's article "Why I Love the Church" explains the motivation behind all three books. http://frankviola.wordpress.com/2009/08/18/why-i-love-the-church-in-praise-of-gods-eternal-purpose/

Tim said...

thanks, Jilliefl1. i've heard good things about Re-imagining Church.