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Religion Saves [Hardcover]

By Mark Driscoll (Author)
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Item Number 345770  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   287
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 1" Width: 5.75" Height: 8.75"
Weight:   1.15 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Jun 5, 2009
Publisher   Crossway Books/Good News
ISBN  1433506165  
EAN  9781433506161  

Availability  0 units.

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Item Description...
After the pastor author set out to determine the most common questions posed on his church's Web site, he selected the top ten and compiled his answers into this resource that, after debunking the misconception that religion saves people, discusses nine other issues, including birth control, sexual sin, dating, predestination, and more. 25,000 first printing.

Publishers Description

After 343,203 online votes on the Mars Hill Church website, nine questions for Pastor Mark Driscoll emerged as the ones most urgently calling for answers.

Inspired by 1 Corinthians, in which Paul answers a series of questions posed by the people in the Corinthian church, Pastor Mark Driscoll set out to determine the most controversial questions among visitors to the Mars Hill Church website. In the end, 893 questions were asked and 343,203 votes were cast. The top nine questions are now each answered in a chapter of Religion Saves.

After an introductory chapter devoted to the misconception that religion is what saves us, Driscoll tackles nine issues: birth control, humor, predestination, grace, sexual sin, faith and works, dating, the emerging church, and the regulative principle.

Because the purpose of this book is to address commonly asked questions, all readers will find relevant, engaging material, written in Driscoll's distinctively edgy, yet theologically sound style.

Buy Religion Saves by Mark Driscoll from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781433506161 & 1433506165

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More About Mark Driscoll

Mark Driscoll

Mark Driscoll was the founding pastor of Mars Hill Church, a multi-site congregation based in Seattle that spaned 15 locations in five states. He was the founder of Resurgence (, co-founder of the Acts 29 Network, and the author of numerous books. Pastor Mark's sermons reach millions of listeners online, and in 2010 Preaching magazine named him one of the 25 most influential pastors of the past 25 years. Pastor Mark and his wife have five children.

Gerry Breshears (PhD, Fuller Theological Seminary) is professor of theology and chairman of the division of biblical and theological studies at Western Seminary. He also serves as an elder and on the preaching team at Grace Community Church in Gresham, Oregon.

Mark Driscoll has published or released items in the following series...

  1. Best of Small Groups
  2. Leadership Network Innovation

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
The humor chapter misses the point, but the rest is solid  May 21, 2010
This is essentially a case of the book being better than the movie. I listened to the podcasts of these sermons as Driscoll delivered them, and they were good, if moderately frustrating at parts, but Driscoll has really improved his work by putting it in print, attributing more quotes, and enhancing the content itself. Specifically, when he spoke about the emerging church (question 2), he told his congregation that he knows this was all from internet voting and that they don't care, so he only used half of his time to address the question and then picked a topic of his own for the rest of the sermon (I don't remember what it was, but I remember feeling cheated, since Driscoll has a unique position as someone who used to work with some of the big Emergent names but now is one of the leading voices in the Reformed movement) (and, seriously, the question about the regulative principle is the top question, and Driscoll didn't whine that the internet voters skewed that result?). This book treats each question with respect, presenting Driscoll's well-researched responses with dozens of footnotes and endnotes, along with an earnest but not humorless tone that makes it sound like he really cares that people feel like their questions have been answered. The footnotes and endnotes alone make this book a valuable resource (even moreso than recordings of the sermons).

I still think, as I thought when listening to the podcast back in the day, that Driscoll completely misses the point of question 8. Essentially, the question asks, "Why do you make fun of so many people and then expect them to become Christians?" and Driscoll answers (I'm paraphrasing), "You don't seem to like that I'm funny. Let's look at how humor is used in the Bible." The problem isn't that Driscoll is funny. He is. The problem is that he's mean. He demeans people, and yes, he refuses to single specific people out or over-focus on one people group, but his attempts to get laughs (while often successful) are not gentle, and they don't feel loving. I have read enough of his books and listened to enough of his sermons to know that Driscoll has a loving heart beneath the pugnacious exterior, but that does not often come across in his funnier sermons. Question 8 is, at the heart level, "Why are you mean?" and Driscoll answers, "Hey, I don't have to apologize for being funny." This book was a chance for Driscoll to really address what was going on, and although I love the book overall, I think he made a mistake on that chapter.
Excellent Biblical Myth-buster  Apr 11, 2010
Driscoll does an excellent job in this book busting up several commonly held myths about Christianity-both from those entrenched in American Christian Culture and those on the outside. He discusses topics of great practicality like humor, birth control, dating, as well as thick theological topics such as grace and works. An easy read but deeply thought provoking. Full of humor and stories and biblical truth this is a great book for anyone interested in looking into Christianity or those who want to know more about their faith.
Overall Good, But Some Will Definitely Not Like It  Feb 27, 2010
Although I have often enjoyed learning from Mark Driscoll via the web (more so in the past), this is the first book of his I have owned. I actually downloaded a free audio version of the book which took me close to ten hours to complete - quite a bit longer than previous audiobooks I have listened to. Pastor Mark asked his predominately young, male, Mars Hill congregation in Seattle to submit to him their burning questions, and after nearly 900 questions were compiled, Driscoll addressed the top nine questions. These questions at times include material that should only be discussed by mature adults and are handled very candidly. Questions cover a hodgepodge of topics including birth control, humor, predestination, grace, sexual sin, faith and works, dating, the emerging church and the regulative principle. I find Driscoll's style to be rather entertaining at times, but at other times I find him to be a little too direct. This shouldn't surprise those who are even a little familiar with Driscoll. Religion Saves is a book that has portions that will definitely offend some conservative Christians. This is a book that you don't have to read chapter by chapter so skipping around won't create confusion. Reading only the chapters you feel you would most benefit from might be a good option for some.

EXCELLENT!  Jan 29, 2010
Well written. Straight to the point. Bold. Some of my favorite chapters were "Faith & Works, Dating, Birth Control, Emergent Church".
Fun read heavy on practical advice but laced with Calvinism and presumptive prooftexting.  Dec 21, 2009
First of all, this book is fun to read. Mark Driscoll has encouraged me through this book because he is edgy, writes what he really thinks, and isn't overly concerned with who might be offended. I like that.

Second, there is a lot of practical, biblically based advice in here. The chapters that really shine are:

Birth control. Here's a great overview of the issue, including some insights into the history of birth control for the past few thousand years, and a process of arriving at a balanced yet biblical point of view. This is Mark Driscoll at his best. Especially fun are all the erotic, and completely permissable within the bounds of marriage, er...activities that are encoded in the Song of Solomon. He includes scripture references for these, but I think on a few he's reaching a bit. I'd like more here than just a scripture reference in a footnote. How did he reach some of these conclusions?

Humor. Well, I'm already familiar with the passages he covers here, so it wan't that funny to me, but he made his case well. It really never occured to me that the use of humor by Christian leaders or in the scripture was an issue at all.

Predestination. Here is where the heavy dogma happens. Mark Driscoll is a Calvinist. He takes a large number of scripture-bytes out of context and lists them all together as if this somehow proves he is right. For example, just dropping "You were slaves to sin" (Rom 6:20) on a page as if this helps prove the Calvinistic "point" of Total Depravity doesn't do much for me. There's no context here so it really doesn't prove anything, except that the Christians in Rome that Paul was writing to were once slaves to sin. But slaves can rebel, and I sort of like to think of turning to God through Jesus Christ as a slave rebelling againt the world and Satan.

And, in the appendix "Bible verses on Predestination" Driscoll lists Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Now, since when is this a verse on predestination? Huh? Time to take a breath and back away from the issue a bit.

(It's this kind of stuff that reminds me of why I don't like to read Christian books much anymore. It seems that in so many of them the author has an axe to grind, so he throws the Bible into an cognitive blender and pulls out the shreds that make his case. This is self serving, not completely honest, and gets really old fast if you have an inquisitive mind and like to verify what people say and write. All I would say with this book, like any other, is don't assume an author is right just because he can cut and paste scripture shreds on a page. Look it up and study it for yourself. If you genuinly seek truth and study for yourself, at least then you own your beliefs. As for me, "All is foreseen; yet free will is given" (Rabbi Akiva, Pirkei Avoth 3:15) which is a great thought that I discovered through doing a little verification on the teaching in this book.

Grace. This chapter is too permeated with Calvinism to be useful to me, sorry.

Faith and Works. Great balanced and thoughtful approach.

Dating. Really really great advice!

The Emerging Church. Dead-on brief buy pithy overview of what this "emerging church" is all about. I particularly appreciated the section on Emergent Liberals.

So, here's a fun to read book loaded with practical advice on a number of issues that affect us all to one degree or another, but also sadly laced with many presumptive uses of scripture in support of Calvinism. Take it with a grain of salt.

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