Real Christians Don't Dance

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Sorting the Truth from the Trappings in a Born-Again Culture

© 1988 John Fischer

Bethany House Publishers, Minneapolis, MN

We played the flute for you and you did not danceJesus Christ

All rights reserved. Used by permission. No portion of this online edition of the book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, except for brief quotations for the purpose of review, comment, or scholarship, without written permission from the author.

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1. EvangelicalismUnited StatesControversial literature. 2. Christian life1960-
BR 1642.U5f54 || 248.4 || LC: 88-458 || ISBN 1-556-61010-6 || OCLC: 17509303 || 191p.

Real Christians Don't Dance is presently held by 175 libraries including Concordia University in St. Paul, Minnesota and Bethel Seminary in San Diego, California.

Table of Contents

From the Jacket

Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . 6

Foreword by Tony Campolo . . . . . . . . . 7

Preface by Leighton Ford . . . . . . . . . 9

1. Real Christians Don't Dance? . . . . . . . . . 15

PART ONE - DRESSING UP . . . . . . . . . 19

2. Designer Christianity . . . . . . . . . 21

3. The Glitter and the Glory . . . . . . . . . 24

4. God on Trial . . . . . . . . . 28

5. Young Man, Old Man, Soup Spoon Act One . . . . . . . . . 31

6. Of Peelings and Pedestals . . . . . . . . . 34

7. Magical Ministry Tour . . . . . . . . . 37

8. Moses and Eleanor Rigby . . . . . . . . . 40

9. The Image . . . . . . . . . 43

10. Young Man, Old Man, Soup Spoon Act Two . . . . . . . . . 46

11. Who's O.K.? . . . . . . . . . 50

12. Diamond in the Rough . . . . . . . . . 54

13. Christ Under Control . . . . . . . . . 57

14. Whose Supper Is It? . . . . . . . . . 60

15. Young Man, Old Man, Revisited . . . . . . . . . 63

16. On a Dead Run . . . . . . . . . 68

17. Two for a Penny . . . . . . . . . 72

18. Reflections on an Alien . . . . . . . . . 75

19. Dressing Up . . . . . . . . . 77

PART TWO -  CUTTING IN . . . . . . . . . 81

20. Casual Crimes . . . . . . . . . 82

21. Feet of Gold . . . . . . . . . 85

22. The Eleventh Hour . . . . . . . . . 89

23. Pile Up . . . . . . . . . 92

24. Close Shave . . . . . . . . . 95

25. Soul Talk . . . . . . . . . 98

26. One Drink Away . . . . . . . . . 101

27. We All Fall Down . . . . . . . . . 104

28. Coming Loose . . . . . . . . . 106

29. Flight 50 . . . . . . . . . 110

30. Lite Christianity . . . . . . . . . 113

31. Cutting In . . . . . . . . . 116

PART THREE - TURNING OUT . . . . . . . . . 119

32. Where's the Graffiti? . . . . . . . . . 120

33. Fear of Dancing . . . . . . . . . 123

34. Up on the Roof . . . . . . . . . 126

35. Only One World . . . . . . . . . 129

36. The Ins and Outs of It . . . . . . . . . 132

37. Messengers in Disguise . . . . . . . . . 134

38. Torchlights . . . . . . . . 137

39. The Art of Fromming . . . . . . . . . 140

40. Holier Than Who? or Heaven Can Wait . . . . . . . . . 143

41. They Are Blinded . . . . . . . . . 146

42. Jesus ("bleep") . . . . . . . . . 149

43. An Inside Job . . . . . . . . . 152

44. Garbage In, Garbage Out? . . . . . . . . . 154

45. Mind-Waste . . . . . . . . . 157

46. Huey's Ladder . . . . . . . . . 160

47. One Hour of MTV . . . . . . . . . 163

48. Desperately Seeking Leah . . . . . . . . . 166

49. Truth, Mick Jagger, and Paint Brushes . . . . . . . . . 170

50. Turning Out . . . . . . . . . 173

PART FOUR - ROUND ABOUT . . . . . . . . . 179

51. Hide-and-Seek . . . . . . . . . 181

52. The Lord of the Dance . . . . . . . . . 184

53. The Speaker . . . . . . . . . 186

54. Round About . . . . . . . . . 189

To Ruth Martin,

whose unrelenting demand for truth
has pulled me both in to what I believe
and out of what I don't.

UNWRAPPING OUR CHRISTIANITY TO LET IT LIVE AND BREATHE LIFE INTO A DECAYING SOCIETY

Probing and questioning, John Fischer challenges believers to evaluate their Christian experience and assumptions. For many, traditions and trappings have become a protective and restrictive cocoon, inhibiting the growth of their faith. Discovering the essence of faith restores the vitality of freedom in Christ and cuts away those issues that distract from the important ones.

"In it not of it," the statement was made
When Christian One faced the world much afraid.
"In it not of it," the call was made clear,
But Christian One got something stuck in his ear.
"Not in it or of it" was the thing that he heard.
And knowing the world was painfully absurd.
He welcomed the safety of pious retreat
And went to the potluck for something to eat.

(Excerpt from "The Ins and Outs of It" p.132)

From a Veteran of the American Evangelical Culture.....

Author John Fischer grew up in a mainline evangelical denomination and has travelled the contemporaray Christian music circuit for many years. As an expert "insider," he has thought long and hard about what is essential Christianity and what are simply cultural appendages that have become attached over a period of time.

Free from sarcasm and ridicule, Real Christians Don't Dance challenges the evangelical Church to identify true Christianity from the sub-culture that has developed around it, to discover what is real obedience and love. Readers may discover in their lives more tradition than truth, more Christianity than Christ, more fundamentalism than faith, more law than love.

Take a Refreshing Dip in the Fischtank

Purchase John's latest books:

Love Him in the Morning: Reflections on God's Faithfulness

Confessions of a Caffeinated Christian

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