David Black, in The Jesus Paradigm (Energion Publications, 2009), holds up the word of God and shows us how far we have drifted from New Testament teaching. This generally has not been a deliberate act of turning away by Christian leaders or Christian politicians. In fact, it has often come about by good intentions, gone badly wrong. In response to this situation, Black issues a strong call to Christians to stop looking for answers in the political arena and return to the basic teachings of Jesus.

Black is a theologian who acknowledges his own personal struggles with applying New Testament teaching to his life in practical ways. His testimony is a great encouragement to all Christians to pursue God’s ways rather than our own comfort. It does not make for easy reading but is a timely reminder to those of us who call ourselves Christian.

As an Australian reader, who doesn’t take a lot of notice of American politics, it was hard for me to understand all of the issues the author raises, but it was clear to me that in many areas the church has moved away from its Biblical foundations. Of course, there are always exceptions and I don’t think the situation is quite as bad in Australia. Nevertheless The Jesus Paradigm is a good wake up call for Christians everywhere.