• The Jesus Paradigm

The church is in disarray. Theologians and commentators speak of the demise of evangelicalism. Are they alarmists? Is Christianity as we know it in the process of dying?

Writer, scholar, teacher, and missionary Dr. David Alan Black thinks that the answer does not lie in the politics of the left or the right. In fact, he doesn't think that Jesus tells us what our politics should be. He doesn't see answers in Christian nationalism. But even further, he sees serious flaws in the very structure of our churches and denominations that prevent us from truly being obedient to the gospel.

The solution lies, not in renewal, revival, or even in reformation, but rather in restoration-a restoration of the church organized as Jesus intended it and according to the example provided by the earliest church sources in the New Testament.

To make the church and its members true servants of Jesus Christ again, we need to change our entire paradigm-to The Jesus Paradigm.

Related informational links:

  • A Conservative Christian Considers >> The Post-Christian World
    Notes on receiving the book.
  • A New Covenant >> The Jesus Paradigm Review

    I highly recommend this work. Dave Black sets out to show us that Jesus' Paradigm isn't what the world deems valuable. For us Christians (disciples/followers) we have to sit down with our ledger and attempt to reconcile it with Jesus' commands, wherever there is a variance we are to fix it. Much of what Dr. Black talks about will have to come through the grace of Jesus; however, Jesus himself says "whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you". That is when we ask with His heartbeat, mostly I have asked with my own. Thanks Dave for a wonderful challenge.

  • A Pilgrim's Progress >> Discipleship
    Eric Carpenter discusses the view of discipleship in this book.
  • Abooklook Review by Susan Barnes
  • Between the Times Review

    by Bruce Ashford


    Although the reader may not be in agreement with Black on every point, the reader can be assured that he will find himself surprised, challenged, and engaged as he turns the pages of The Jesus Paradigm.
  • Energion Publications Open Link Post
    Energion open discussion thread with links to known reviews. E-mail new links to pubs@energion.com, or add them to the open post as comments.
  • Flight Level Musings >> Systematic Theology
    Jack Watkins continues reading The Jesus Paradigm and looks at systematic theology.
  • Flight Level Musings >> The Jesus Paradigm - Book Review
    Jack Watkins starts his review, discussing the preface.
  • Initial Thoughts on The Jesus Paradigm
    From Grace Through the Desert.
  • Justin Kennedy Review


    Im not naive enough to think that the quality of a book is based on what percentage of the book I agree with, but in any case, I found the VAST majority of the book to be incredibly helpful, clear, and engaging. The little that I want to quibble about has only stirred me to more thinking on the issues, and it would be a great book to read in a group and discuss. The chapters on ecclesiology and politics would be particularly interesting in this setting. . . .
  • Review
    From Unlikely Christians blog.
  • Review by Alan Knox

    Notable quote:

    This book is a great reminder of the many discussions that I've had with my PhD mentor, and the reason that I asked him to be my mentor in the first place. Everyone reading this book will quickly realize that Black is not writing from an ivory tower. Instead, he's writing with hands covered with Ethiopian dust.
  • Review by Arthur Sido
    All in all, this is an excellent book. Well written, accessible, challenging, reasonable for the most part. There is no higher compliment that I can give a book than to say it was challenging to me, made me want to read the Scriptures more diligently and that I marked pages and quotes liberally. This book did all three. ...
  • Review by Geoff Smith
    ...I recommend this book to those looking to do things upside down with Jesus. It would make a good college age reading group study or any age book study for that matter. I do not have a rating system, but I whole hearted recommend this book to any who were wondering about it or just hadn't heard of it.
  • Review by Geoffrey Lentz (GeoffreyLentz.com)
    The church is set to undergo massive transformations in the coming years and decades. Many great authors have recently been describing desired and/or emerging models; David Alan Black is among them with his newest book, The Jesus Paradigm (Energion Publications, July 2009). The basic premise of the book is that the church has lost sight of our purpose and has become weighed down with meetings, bureaucracy, and structure and has neglected our primary call to make disciples of all nations.
  • Review by Lew Ayotte
    Early advance copy review.
  • Review on Messiah Road Map
    Bob Makar reviews.
  • The Jesus Paradigm
    The web home for discussion of The Jesus Paradigm and the challenge of Christian discipleship. Come--share and be challenged!
  • The Jesus Paradigm (Covenant News)
    News announcement.
  • The Jesus Paradigm (Review)
    Allan R. Bevere reviews The Jesus Paradigm, discussing issues of baptism and of ecclesiology amongst many others.
  • The Jesus Paradigm (The Assembling of the Church)
    Summary, link, and discussion.
  • The Jesus Paradigm - Church and Politcis
    Continued review on A Pilgrim's Progress.
  • The Jesus Paradigm - Hermeneutics
    Eric Carpenter suggests that the primary point is consistent hermeneutics.
  • The Jesus Paradigm Review - Connect with God - Connect with Others


    I would encourage any follower of Jesus to read this book. It will challenge your thinking. May God use it to bring His church closer to Himself!


  • The Jesus Paradigm is a personal and passionate appeal for real discipleship, just the kind of plea that Christians need to hear. This is also a plea for the church to be what it was called to be, something far different from most of what we see. People may disagree with parts of the book, but they cannot legitimately ignore its challenge.

    Klyne R. Snodgrass, Paul W. Brandel Professor of New Testament Studies, North Park Theological Seminary

  • Here is a book that calls for nothing less than the complete dismantling of business-as-usual in the twenty-first century church in favor of a radical model based entirely on Scripture and rediscovered by the sixteenth century Anabaptists. Black writes an immensely practical book that will rearrange the furniture in your mind and, if heeded, will resurrect biblical Christianity.

    David B. Capes, Professor in Christianity, Houston Baptist University

  • Some who read this book will think Dave Black has gone too far; some will think he has not gone far enough. But as he himself says about one of his own sources, "One does not have to agree with everything in the book to appreciate it." Few readers will appreciate all aspects of Black's argument, but it is high time we all heard and heeded its radical, sobering, and exciting call to the Church of Jesus Christ simply to obey her Master!

    Richard J. Erickson, Associate Professor of New Testament, Fuller Theological Seminary

  • "Brother David" delivers a punch in the gut of cultural Christianity, whether on the right or the left. He pokes and prods the church to be a "radical, Christ-centered, martyr movement." This reincarnation of a sixteenth century Anabaptist is guaranteed to stir you up, regardless your church niche. If you are confused or irritated by the current culture wars, let this seasoned and salty Jesus follower draw you to the center he has found.

    Kent L. Yinger, Associate Professor of New Testament, George Fox Evangelical Seminary

  • Many have deep questions about American Churchianity and even Evangelicalism, but are not sure if it's okay to ask. A respected scholar with a missionary heart, Dave invites you along his journey. What a few of my generation were whispering, a flood of younger American Christians are shouting. Weary of fighting with fellow believers over secondary or tertiary doctrine, they are seeking a community of radical disciples. Arguing Jesus gave us a paradigm (Jn. 13:15), Dave passionately suggests "The American church has forgotten this servant role of Christianity." Black offers us more than the pseudo-radicalism of many popular Christian speakers who condemn the materialism of the church while modeling a careerism as secular as their leadership principles. Dave calls us back to the Jesus paradigm.

    E. Randolph Richards, Dean of the School of Ministry and Professor of Biblical Studies, Palm Beach Atlantic University

  • In this compelling book, David Alan Black has done two things at once: he has reminded Baptists of their heritage and provoked Christians to reclaim the gospel as a way of life. These are powerful words because he speaks from his own experience. Written in an engaging style and with great humility, Black has done the Church at large and Baptists in particular a great service: if we heed his words we will recover the way of Christ as the only way to live.

    Rodney Reeves, Dean, The Courts Redford College of Theology and Ministry, Southwest Baptist University

  • In The Jesus Paradigm, Dr. Black articulates the growing concern from both laity and academia that Christianity, particularly in North America, is no longer recognizable as that defined in the New Testament. His critique of various Christian practices, to be sure, is painful to hear yet necessary and calls for a long overdue self-calibration. His invitation to relinquish power and ambition for power is an incisive critique of the Church's misunderstanding of both the cross and discipleship. The Jesus Paradigm is a refreshing contribution and worthwhile for any claiming the name of Christ.

    M. Sydney Park, Assistant Professor of Divinity, Beeson Divinity School

Book Data
Pages 180
ISBN10 1-893729-56-7
ISBN13 978-1-893729-56-8

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