Item description for The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others by Scot McKnight & Scott McKnight...
Overview Teaches the Jesus Creed, the amended ancient Jewish creed for spiritual formation, the Shema, which Jesus adapted for his own followers, that they are to love God and to love others. Original. 10,000 first printing.
Winner of the 2005 Christianity Today Book Award When an expert in the law asked Jesus for the greatest commandment, Jesus responded with the "Shema," the ancient Jewish creed that commands Israel to love God with heart, soul, mind, and strength. But the next part of Jesus' answer would change the course of history. Jesus amended the "Shema," giving his followers a new creed for life: to love God with heart, soul, mind, and strength, but also to love others as themselves. Discover how the Jesus Creed of love for God and others can transform your life.
Awards and Recognitions The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others by Scot McKnight & Scott McKnight has received the following awards and recognitions -
Christianity Today Book Award - 2005 Winner - Christian Living category
Citations And Professional Reviews The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others by Scot McKnight & Scott McKnight has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Publishers Weekly - 08/16/2004 page 59
Christian Retailing - 10/04/2004 page 20
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Studio: Paraclete Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.07" Width: 5.5" Height: 0.94" Weight: 0.8 lbs.
Release Date Oct 1, 2004
Publisher PARACLETE PRESS #810
ISBN 1557254001 ISBN13 9781557254009
Availability 0 units.
More About Scot McKnight & Scott McKnight
Dennis R. Venema (PhD, University of British Columbia) is professor of biology at Trinity Western University in Langley, British Columbia, and Fellow of Biology for the BioLogos Foundation. He writes and speaks regularly about the biological evidence for evolution. Scot McKnight (PhD, University of Nottingham), a world-renowned scholar, writer, and speaker, is Julius R. Mantey Professor of New Testament at Northern Seminary in Lombard, Illinois. He is the author or editor of more than fifty books, including Kingdom Conspiracy, The Jesus Creed, The King Jesus Gospel, and The Apostle Pauland the Christian Life. He is also a popular blogger(Jesus Creed).
Scot McKnight currently resides in Chicago, in the state of Illinois.
Scot McKnight has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about The Jesus Creed: Loving God, Loving Others?
Food for Thought Mar 24, 2008
I have enjoyed reading Scot's take on Jesus addition to the Shema. I think that many today would benefit from sitting down, reading this material and seriously considering their personal response to the Jewish Shema and Jesus addition to it.
I particularly think that his discussion from the life of John the Baptist in Chapter 7 is very insightful. On page 68 the comment, "Facing reality is telling the truth about each of our levels to God". Yes, that is where we fail. We think we can hide our "real" self from God, but we can't. We need to have a fresh start with God and move ahead with our love relationship with him.
This is an easy read, yet has some good information. Be sure and ask God to open your heart and mind before you read so that the Spirit can be touching your heart at the times where you need to "learn".
Completely Misses the Mark.... Aug 29, 2007
What is billed as a book that will help you "discover how the Jesus Creed of love for God and others can transform your life" The Jesus Creed reveals more about the author's fascination with symbolic overtones and calls to a narcissistic faith, than the Gospel that proclaims the two Great Commandments of God. Built upon a call to living out the Shema (To love God with all and to love others as yourself, as affirmed and lived by Jesus Christ) The Jesus Creed seems promising at first. But that promise soon fades away as yet another surface driven effort to promote a kind of cobbled together, self-help gospel has been put to paper. Symbols and rituals become larger than life in The Jesus Creed and one wonders where the author believes that reliance on Christ in humble faith truly begins and the symbol that is supposed to point to it actually ends.
The Jesus Creed is a noble attempt by a sincere author to encapsulate the heart of the Christian faith, but it is an attempt that ends in utter failure. Absent is a serious discussion on sin and of the very reason we have need of a Savior and why, when we accept such a gracious Savior, we will spontaneously overflow with joy and love in response to what Jesus has done. There are a few sections (i.e. Restoring in Jesus) that quickly gloss over the great problem of sin, but soon the reader is shuffled off to view a confused explanation of restoration that seems little more than an elaborate "sinner's prayer" before any kind of needed depth is undertaken. Also absent is a serious discussion and call to the humility necessary to fully surrender to God (though the author devotes an entire chapter on surrender that falls hopelessly short) and to truly love one's neighbor. Again, a serious explanation and grappling with our sin and how the true Christian is driven to the feet of Christ is missing. What promises to be a call to a total surrender and the regeneration of a humble, meek and mournful spirit though obedience to the great commands turns out to be litany of sentimental stories and symbolic charms that are missing tangible, straight-forward and belivable examples that explains the magnitude, worth and need of an all glorious Christ.
One cannot surrender if one does not understand what they are surrendering from, and even if one comes to know, there is still the matter of our total helplessness. All of these central and critical issues are missing from The Jesus Creed. The Gospel is anything but man-centered or formulaic. The Gospel has God prominently on display from first to last as he displays his power, mercy and love towards a humanity that is completely undeserving. It is here where The Jesus Creed gets lost. The real "Jesus Creed" is found, of course, in the Scriptures themselves and sadly, very little of it is pointed to directly in the book. The ultimate message of The Jesus Creed seems to be a spirituality that is infatuated with anecdotes and symbols that almost invite the reader to just bend Jesus to every need, desire and whim, not an invitation to bow your knee to the Jesus who came and died and offers himself to all who believe. No doubt many of the book's anecdotes are weaved in interesting and colorful ways, but they often have little substance about the life of Christ, with what he calls us to do and what he asks of us tangibly. This of course is to love each other as he loved us, but not in some metaphorical or abstract way as this book advocates practically but in the gritty day-to-day ordinary life settings that requires real, painful sacrifice to produce real, authentic love for the poor, the sick, the needy, and the enemy. By doing so we thereby show our love for God as we are giving love to God (John 5:1-3) - the real Creed. Despite the painful irony, The Jesus Creed misses all of it.
JESUS CREED and A LETTER TO A CHRISTIAN NATION Feb 15, 2007
Some say religion is like a sponge that soaks up every bias, prejudice, and sentimentalism- and there is much truth to that (see my forthcoming review of A LETTER TO A CHRISTIAN NATION). Scot McKnight has squeezed the sponge dry; his book THE JESUS CREED-LOVING GOD, LOVING OTHERS distills orthodox Christianity into the Jesus Creed which is Jesus' remarkable answer when asked "what is important." Jesus answered to love God and love others. This foundational creed is derived from the Jewish Shema, Deuteronomy 6.5-5, and from Leviticus 19:15 "Love your neighbor as yourself." McKnight writes, "It should shape everything we say about Christian spirituality. Everything."
Jesus' imperative to love God and love others was radical when Jesus taught and remains radical today or at least muffled under the cacophony of Christian credal contentiousness. McKnight, a professor and Christian biblical scholar, draws on his intimate knowledge of the Bible, holy land history and sociology to highlight, using stories from the Bible and his own life, Jesus' essential and uncompromising command to love God and others.
"What a concept," my high school students might say sardonically without knowing knowing what sardonic means! But McKnight is serious and insists that love God and love others must inform every interpretation of every Biblical verse and every understanding of Christian tradition. McKnight's teaching is gentle with fewer "rough edges" than Jesus' own, and the book is even humorous at times with stories and quotes from friends and contemporary entertainment media. Ironically, McKnight is teaching a not always well received message (MERE CHRISTIANITY by C.S. Lewis comes to mind as another distillation of Jesus' message that threatens the verse-interpretation obsessions of so many denominations). Jesus' simple command that McKnight names the "Jesus Creed" challenges contemporary (and past) Christian perspectives, caught up, as so many are, with worldly and political agendas.
McKnight combines historic settings and metaphor to beautifully bring Jesus' message to life. The table metaphor is one such Biblical setting and metaphor. The Torah required obedience to 613 laws, laws which defined "clean" and "unclean" in ways that sometimes made love of others difficult or impossible. The Parable of the Good Samaritan, for instance, required ignoring the perhaps dead- and therefore impure- Jericho man lying on the side of the road. The Samaritan, however, was willing to violate the law in order to fulfill the greater command to love God and love others. Jesus, in ways that astounded and provoked the elites of his time, welcomed all to his table (and ministry): women, who were marginalized by the ethos of his day, sinners of every sort, lepers, and all the untouchables of that society. Loving god and others meant love god and ALL others.
If the Jesus Creed, love God and love all others, is often hard to hear in the pronouncements of Christians and Christianity, it is even harder to live, witness the history of the church. This book with its simple and difficult message is recommended to all Christians who may have lost the path by following the extraneous, and it is especially recommended to all Christians and non-Christians who have been hurt and angered by those who lost the path and failed to express love and welcome. Possibly like you, my life has been touched more by the path-fallen messages than by the Jesus Creed, a message anything but mean-spirited.
McKnight also hosts a Jesus Creed blog (use your search engine to find it) where daily blogs include the tame, the topical, and the terrifying. Time and time again McKnight and his contributors wrestle with Biblical verses and Christian tradition, sharing their journeys, their doubts, their hopes and fears in ways so moving that any Christian or non-Christian would walk the extra mile with them. These blog pilgrims are sometimes as stripped naked wanderers in the wilderness searching for sustenance and meaning. And that sustenance and meaning comes not from their voluminous knowledge- these blog contributors are mostly professors, students and pastors dizzy with their book knowledge and interpretations- but from six simple words: love God and love all others. From the book and from the blog, one is constantly reminded- all interpretation must be informed by the Jesus Creed. Also, there is general blog agreement that Biblical interpretation must be informed by established scientific facts and theories, but that is another story, outside the scope of McKnight's book.
Another recommended book is A LETTER TO A CHRISTIAN NATION by Sam Harris, an atheist who attempts "to demolish the intellectual and moral pretensions of Christianity in its most committed forms," and quite successfully, I might add, except for one proviso. Scot McKnight, his book, and his blog escape and are not demolished by Harris' just criticisms. I think McKnight would agree with very much of Harris' critique, and I can't help but think that Harris would find the Jesus creed among the highest expressions of religion. In fact, had Christians learned to love God and love all others there would have been very little basis for Harris' book. However, it must be admitted that, with very few exceptions, Christians and all others, share in this deficit of universal love.
McKnight teaches all to love God by following Jesus along that path of loving others, and his pilgrim bloggers are a testimony to its truth. Harris succinctly shows how Christian dogma and prejudice has continually blocked many from loving others, often creating rancor and sometimes war- another undeniable truth. Somehow, perhaps, love and truth will overcome our history's foreshadowing of tragedy: a world divided into angry factions with weapons on every side that can extinguish the human experiment. These two books, THE JESUS CREED- LOVING GOD, LOVING OTHERS and A LETTER TO A CHRISTIAN NATION inform each other and give some hope that love and reason, indeed the human experiment, might prevail.
the greatest command Jan 17, 2007
First published in September 2004, The Jesus Creed is already in its third printing, and the recipient of Christianity Today's Book Award for 2005 as one of the best books of the year to introduce people to evangelical Christianity. Clearly, McKnight, the Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies at North Park College (Chicago), has struck a chord with a considerable reading audience.
The strength of his book is its focus on what is central to the faith rather than peripheral, and to present that central affirmation in a simple, which is not to say simplistic, manner. McKnight taught seminary students for eleven years before choosing to teach college-level students for the past ten years, and about half of these younger students are not Christian. I admired his ability to move from his capacity as a technical specialist who has written more weighty tomes to connect with people who know nothing at all about the faith. A number of other strengths commend this book. McKnight draws upon a wide fund of ecumenical sources--Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, mainline Protestant, Pentecostal, and evangelical. He uses story-telling to good effect by sharing real-life anecdotes from his personal, family, and professional life. His style is casual throughout, and for that reason entirely accessible. John the Baptist, for example, "was wired hot and a bit off his rocker, living in the wilderness, eating bugs, and calling the nation to repentance" (141). Being the scholar that he is, McKnight also roots his discussion in the Jewish context of the life and times of Jesus. Although his presentation is simple, at the same time it is comprehensive, guiding the reader through such issues as community, social justice, the sacraments, and so forth. Finally, I appreciated McKnight's book because he introduces his readers to sources from the ancient to the modern, and to points in between. You will learn about the early fathers, the medieval monastics, the Reformation Protestants, and modern-day writers from Dorothy Sayers to CS Lewis and Dallas Willard.
And just what is the Jesus Creed? It is Jesus's amended version of the Jewish Shema of Deuteronomy 6:4-9, the heart and soul, the sine qua non or quintessence of Judaism. When asked by an expert in the Law about the greatest commandment, Jesus answered with the Shema, adding to it Leviticus 19:18: "Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these" (Mark 12:28-33). In this short summary we have what Thomas à Kempis called "a whole dictionary in just one dictum" (8). In the rest of his book McKnight parses the grammar of Christian faith so clearly that few readers could misunderstand.
Loving your neighbor Jan 2, 2007
The Jesus Creed - Loving God, Loving Others by Scot McKnight
Summary by G. Stephen Goode
From the Preface --
"A Jewish expert on the law once asked Jesus what was the most important thing for spiritual formation. Jesus' answer turned history upside down for those who followed him. This book is an invitation for you to explore Jesus' answer to that man. I call it the Jesus Creed, and what he said should shape everything we say about Christian spirituality. Everything."
Jesus knows what life is all about. He was born into a Jewish family and culture but he was more than Jewish. He took the Shema which was central to Judaism but he added to it to make it the Jesus Creed. It is simple, yet it will cost us our lives, living it out. Love God. Love others. It is central to who Jesus was and is the core of who we should/can become. Jesus gave us the Creed and a model to follow.
Dr. McKnight is a Old Testament scholar but he does not write like one. I have to admit that I sought out this book because of the loving others part. I think we in the church should be doing that better and more often in order to demonstrate the love of God to the Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, animist, to the poor and other unreached worlds. It also has to be integrated. Loving God and Loving others is like a coin. You cannot have one side without the other and yet it seems like we continue to get pulled from one side or another. Either just loving God or loving one's neighbor. We cannot do one without the other. God help us to be more like Jesus.
This book helped me a great deal as I started reading it during our response to the Asian tsunami. Loving God and our neighbor has been there from the beginning. Listening to those who suffer, entering into their grief and bearing their burdens helps us to fulfill the love of Christ. Compassion in the Jesus Creed is on every page of this book just like it is in the four Gospels. I think we forget that sometimes but Jesus did not. That is why He made it the center.
From page 117 "Jesus doesn't act in compassion in order to dazzle people into adoring him. He acts out of love and to transform the life of the grieving person. The widow gets her son back and has an income again. The prostitute's life is transformed from impurity to purity. Each woman of Luke 8 - Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Susanna and others - has a special story to tell about what Jesus has done: one tells a story of spiritual cleansing, another of physical healing, and others(if I may guess) of learning that Roman money is to be distributed to the needy, including Jesus. Wealthy women at the time of Jesus-- and these women were evidently wealthy -- did not pay taxes. Instead, if they had good hearts, they distributed their funds to charities. The chosen charity of these women was Jesus, whom they support and follow his entire life. It is these same women who become witnesses of Jesus' death and resurrection......"
So may we continue to love God and others and fulfill the same creed that Jesus did.