The New York Times bestselling author of The Prodigal Prophet uncovers the essential message of Jesus, locked inside his most familiar parable.
Newsweek called renowned minister Timothy Keller "a C.S. Lewis for the twenty-first century" in a feature on his first book, The Reason for God. In that book, he offered a rational explanation of why we should believe in God. Now, in The Prodigal God, Keller takes his trademark intellectual approach to understanding Christianity and uses the parable of the prodigal son to reveal an unexpected message of hope and salvation.
Within that parable Jesus reveals God's prodigal grace toward both the irreligious and the moralistic. This book will challenge both the devout and skeptics to see Christianity in a whole new way.
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What a great book! Shined light on dark corners of my heart. Areas I couldn’t see before but now am able to. Thank you.
The Prodigal God
I thought the book was an excellent explanation of Jesus parable of the Prodigal Son, but leaves me with the feeling that I have never really seen true Christianity. I have always felt like I represented the elder brother of this parable, but that was just the way it was and was certainly a lot better than being the bad son that was the “Prodigal “. I’ve always been a little put out by wild living people that get, “saved” and then have this “glowing” testimony of how bad they were and now how much God is,”blessing and using” them to minister to the “lost”.
Yet they eventually become the “spiritually elite” within the church and are as “legalistic” in there ministry as the Pharisees. In the many decades I’ve been in fundamentalist/pentecostal churches and as a pastor myself at one time in my life, I really would be hard pressed to really see anyone that stood out as an example of Christ I would want to be like. Not one measures up to what I would consider a true and authentic example of true Christianity. This book only serves to validate that feeling.
I feel the only hope Mankind has is the fact that eventually ALL will be saved. “As in Adam, ALL die, so in Christ, shall ALL be made alive”. If that’s not the Gospel, “good news”, then where’s the hope that all of us deeply flawed people, from Adam to the newest baby born, have any hope at all.
Disclosure: I'm partial to teachings that challenge the norm or introduce new aspects to old stories. The thing I love about this book is that Mr Keller reveals aspects about the culture of the time we wouldn't necessarily know in a modern western society. He opens up our eyes to see as a New Testament Jew would have seen, to hear the message Jesus was presenting to the Pharisees and teachers of the law.
We typically see this parable as a nice story about a wayward son forgiven and restored by his loving father after wasting his inheritance away. What Keller presents to us is the self-sacrificial attitude of the father in the story and the lostness of the second older son.
Also, Jesus' audience is part of the understanding of the story. There was a purpose to the way he framed this story that caused his listeners to react and begin thinking about their understanding of God.
I recommend this book to absolutely every Christian and any other reader wanting a glimpse into the true character of our Creator. You will be encouraged and challenged to see and understand God the way Jesus knows him. You will not be disappointed, I think.