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The Ragamuffin Gospel: Good News for the Bedraggled, Beat-Up, and Burnt Out Paperback – Jun 28 2005
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Brennan Manning wrote The Ragamuffin Gospel "for the bedraggled, beat-up, and burnt-out," the marginalized folks to whom Jesus ministered: the children, the ill, the tax collectors, the women. In other words, the ragamuffins. Manning understands better than most that behind our facades of order and self-assurance are inadequacies that can find healing only in Jesus. While the powerful and religious elite challenged him, Jesus embraced and healed and fed the needs of the ragamuffins. Jesus delivered love, healing, and, most of all, grace.
Grace is defined as "the freely given and unmerited favor and love of God." But, as Manning points out, we have "twisted the gospel of grace into religious bondage and distorted the image of God into an eternal, small-minded bookkeeper." In reality, God offers us grace immeasurable. Brennan Manning gently encourages us to embrace that grace in the face of our greatest needs. And Manning certainly knows whereof he speaks, having taken a journey from priesthood and academic achievement through a collapse into alcoholism. Manning came face to face with his need, finally abandoning himself to grace. And he invites us now to join him in a life of grace.
Manning is without doubt one of the most eloquent writers on the subject of grace because he openly shares his own pain and struggle to help readers deal with failure and inadequacy. And he sweetly challenges them to do the same. --Patricia Klein --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
“Brennan Manning does a masterful job of blowing the dust off of shop-worn theology and allowing God’s grace to do what only God’s grace can do—amaze.”
-Max Lucado, Bestselling author of The Gift for All People
“I found deep comfort in realizing that Jesus loves even me, a ragamuffin, just as I am.”
-Michael Card, Musician, recording artist, and author of A Violent Grace
“This is a zestful and accurate portrayal that tells us unmistakably that the gospel is good, dazzlingly good.”
-Eugene Peterson, Author of The Message
From the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
The Ragamuffin Gospel seeks to destroy the worldview of God that Christendom has created: You are saved by immense and passionate grace and mercy, but once you accept it, God has a checklist of sanctification and service that you must repay. Why would a God of unsearchable riches suddenly do a 180 and expect us to deliver a checklist of personal effort? Our "spiritual leaders" reinforce these lists often comprised of: Do your daily devotions, or God won't speak to you / Pray longer and harder or God won't know your heart / Do more service for church, you're not doing enough for God, you're spending too much time on yourself / If you don't have it all together, God can't use you, etc. etc.
Brennan Manning vehemently believes that God absolutely hates sin (as the other reviewers here focus on as their primary view of God), BUT, God's grace and mercy abounds all the more. IT IS THIS UNFATHOMABLE AWE OF EXPERIENCING AND KNOWING JESUS' LOVE THAT INSPIRES AND STRENGTHENS US TO FLEE FROM SIN, NOT OUR OWN RESOLVE.
A MUST read for anyone who has been raised in the modern institutional church.
Some people sin in public, some in private. If you don't believe in the concept of sin, you probably won't like this book. If you don't believe in God, you probably won't like this book. If you believe that you have to 'behave' in order for God to love you - well, I think that's why Brennan wrote this book.
It seems to me that Brennan isn't saying we shouldn't behave. Of course we should behave. But we don't have to behave in order for God to love us. If you have children, you know exactly what he means.
To explain why this book spoke so beautifully to my heart, as the saying goes, "the taller you stand the farther you fall". I was for most of my young adult life a devoted and sincere Christian; I loved God and enjoyed His constant presence, was active in college Christian fellowship groups and mission trips and had intended on a life of mission work overseas. But during the year after I graduated from college, unforeseen circumstances - and weaknesses I didn't even know I had - cancelled my plans to "work for God".
Within the next year alone, my disappointment, feelings of being suddenly lost in world in which I'd previously thought to know my place and purpose, and a sudden sense of complete worthlessness left me reeling. I went from being what one might call a cookie-cutter Christian, admired as "shining with the light of Jesus", to struggling through severe depression, abusive drinking, eating disorders and unhealthy relationships. I contemplated suicide and often lied in bed crying with grief over what I thought must be God's deep, deep disappointment in me.
When I was introduced to The Ragamuffin Gospel by a dear friend "who knew me back when", I felt an inexplicable sense of relief after reading just a few pages. I felt I was engaging in a conversation with that rare type of person -- someone who understood how I felt, and better yet, had a sincere answer and hope to share.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
There was only one other book ( not including my Bible ) that I had read more than once. That book was "Pilgrim's Progress" by John Bunyan!Published 12 months ago by David J. Gray
I got sidetracked and am not quite finished reading it yet. However, what I have read [more than half] is very inspirational and I will quote him every chance I get.Published 22 months ago by Peter Langer
I found this book very helpful with the doubts I am facing on how to act within my faith everydayPublished on March 28 2014 by eric g budgell
I have not even finished this book totally but so far it has been great reenforsing why and what I believe and showing us all as christians what undeserved love we have been givenPublished on May 15 2010 by Sonya E.