“Jesus Plus Nothing” is the central theme of Andrew Farley's new book The Naked Gospel.
Christian, are you a legalist? Are you bound by your to do list for God? Does the word "obligation" weigh heavily in your mind when you consider your Lord?
These are all questions I would consider asking someone before I would recommend The Naked Gospel: The Truth You May Never Hear in Church by Andrew Farley, Lead Teaching Pastor of Ecclesia — Church Without Religion, located in Lubbock, Texas.
My first impression of The Naked Gospel was one of effective marketing. The dust cover is transparent and the Table of Contents is printed on the front cover. The book opens with an enthusiastic, encouraging dedication to the author's son and lists a quote referencing Arthur Bury’s book also called The Naked Gospel. The final touch is the discussion guide entitled "Nude Reflections."
This book is for the born again Christian. All three of these marketing techniques bring to mind what Andrew Farley's main premise is — Jesus Plus Nothing. These marketing techniques are quite interesting and imaginative, but the content is what stirred quite a few conversations with my husband and friends on the issues raised in this work.
In Chapter One, the reader is asked a series of questions to begin the dialogue of the book. I was quickly taken aback as I immediately disagreed with some of the statements made. Not wanting to give away the content, suffice it to say, these are standard and pointed questions. My advice to the reader would be to read these questions very closely before you answer.
The Naked Gospel is a fresh, clear look at the issue of Salvation by Grace, not works, as well as living under Grace, not Old Testament Law. New (or seasoned) believers will be encouraged as they read that there was nothing they did that brought about salvation in their lives, therefore, there is no amount of works they can do now to keep or maintain their salvation.
And additionally enlightening is the focus on New Covenant living. Farley sites that many of the traditions we maintain in our churches today are not in line with New Covenant living.
Andrew Farley’s direct and honest writing style adds to the sections' personal testimony. He does not mince words. He addresses objections and then brings the reader back to the main theme of Jesus Plus Nothing.
Upon reflection, there were sections that at first I did not agree with, but, after consideration, I found the doctrine sound. It is New Covenant living that Andrew Farley offers in this book. It does not diminish Old Covenant standards but amplifies the simplicity of the New Covenant.
The Naked Gospel is for the genuine believer who has walked the road of obligation and perhaps needs to breathe the fresh air of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As a believer, I contend that there is nothing you can do to make God love you more; and there is nothing you can do to make God love you less. God just loves you. There is only one response to this kind of Love and that is to walk in it.
I recommend this book, for discussion and examination.
For a limited time, you can download a free electronic copy of this book. Links to Andrew Farley's free download can be found on The Vessel Project Free Download Section or from The Naked Gospel website.