Book Review: Pagan Christianity

1:00 AM

I recommend this for: curious minds, those dissatisfied with church as it is, adults

From the back cover
Pagan Christianity: Exploring the Roots of Our Church Practices

Have you ever wondered why we Christians do what we do for church every Sunday morning? Why do we “dress up” for church? Why does the pastor preach a sermon each week? Why do we have pews, steeples, choirs, and seminaries? This volume reveals the startling truth: most of what Christians do in present-day churches is not rooted in the New Testament, but in pagan culture and rituals developed long after the death of the apostles. Coauthors Frank Viola and George Barna support their thesis with compelling historical evidence in the first-ever book to document the full story of modern Christian church practices.

This books digs back into church history and asks a very simple question; where did the practices of the modern day church come from. If you want to read this book, prepare yourself to never look at the church the same way again.

I was amazed at all the research that went into this book. I have read many books written by the emerging church leaders, but none of them is so well researched. Even if you think that the emerging church is a bad thing, this might be a good read for understanding where people in the movement are coming from, from an academic stand point.

What I liked about this book.
As I said before, I loved the extensive research put into this book. It is amazing to find out how some things got started, practices that are not found in the New Testament. This is the best history currently available of where church practices came from.

Also, for me, it was a faith building book. Sometimes I need to be reminded that my faith is in the Living God, not in rituals of the church. Sometimes I need to rethink why I am doing what I am doing and make sure it is in line with what God wants. This book made me think.

What I didn’t like.
This book was a little dry and hard to get through. I also think the author fails to see that, for some people, the institutional church can be a blessing. Although my ideas of church are more closely aligned with the emerging church, I have seen too many people who have been blessed by the institutional church to completely say it is wrong.

I recommend this book for anyone who is searching for answers and has an open mind. Book are written by fallible people, and no books should be taken as gospel truth.

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  1. Thanks for your comment on my book. Note that PC is not a stand alone. It's very incomplete. The constructive sequel is much better and more important to my mind.


    Frank Viola

  2. Mr. Viola,

    I will have to check that out! Thank you so much for stopping by.