Review: Jacques Ellul’s The Subversion of Christianity

Summer Read with Me….


The next few months I will be reviewing a book that I believe has a relevant message for the life of every thinking Christian today. While written almost one quarter of a century ago, the points made by the author are still critical issues today.

The book I am reading, should you like to get a copy, is The Subversion of Christianity
by Jacques Ellul, former Professor of Law, Sociology and History at the University of Bordeaux in France.

M. Ellul, even in the title, makes clear that there are certain areas of faith and practice of which Christianity needs to take notice. Additionally, he opines, there needs to be a serious consideration of the accuracy of the Gospel message as well as the probable consequences for continuing to ignore and compound errors that are centuries old.

At the outset, M. Ellul declares that although Christian Doctrine often promotes the concept of “grace and works” as oppositional concepts, it was not the case that the Apostle Paul promoted such a thing, nor was it the position of Jesus. Ellul shows that Paul and James the Just both held the same position, even though many Christians believe otherwise.

Ellul takes an interesting position on how Christianity came to the place where they are sometimes 180 degrees in practice from the religion of Jesus and the New Testament writers. He does not take the blaming stance that often finds a scapegoat to justify why Christian practice is so different than the faith and practice of the first believers. Rather, he says that we have become accustomed to doing things our own way and it has become so comfortable, that our practices have obscured the original faith.

Unfortunately, for us, G_d may not see it our way! If that is the case, then Christianity stands to lose its standing in the covenant. After all, there is no Covenant made with Gentiles; only Jews.

I will be posting for the next few months, here and on my blog (link will be sent out for first post), which will take the place of our monthly teleconferences for the summer. I encourage you to read along and to chime in with your thoughts and feelings.

I hope you will join me…it should be an interesting read….


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