Being the Bad Guys ebook

How to Live for Jesus in a World That Says You Shouldn't

from 7 reviews

How to live confidently for Jesus in today's world.

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Description

The church used to be recognised as a force for good, but this is changing rapidly. Christians are now often seen as the bad guys, losing both respect and influence.

In our post-Christian culture, how do we offer the gospel to those around us who view it as not only wrong but possibly dangerous? And how do we ensure that the secular worldview does not entice us away with its constant barrage, online and elsewhere, of messages about self-determinism?

Author Stephen McAlpine offers an analysis of how our culture ended up this way and explains key points of tension between biblical Christianity and secular culture.

He encourages Christians not to be ashamed of the gospel as it is more liberating, fulfilling and joyful than anything the world has to offer. He also offers strategies for coping in this world, with its opposing values, and for reaching out to others wisely with the truth.

Stephen McAlpine is an author, blogger and pastor. He also works with City Bible Forum, a network which trains and mentors Christian city workers across Australia, and he is part of an outreach initiative called Third Space.

Product details

Contents

  • Part One: How Did We Get to Be the Bad Guy?
  • 1. Why This Sudden Hostility?
  • 2. Why the Surprise?
  • Part Two: What Does Being the Bad Guy Look Like?
  • 3. Binary Beige vs. Diverse Rainbows
  • 4. Loud Power vs. Voiceless Victims
  • 5. Self-Denial vs. Self-Actualisation
  • Part Three: Being the Best Bad Guy You Can Be
  • 6. Don't Renovate the Wrong House
  • 7. Faithful, Faultless and Fearless
  • 8. The City and the City

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Specification

Author Stephen McAlpine
ISBN 9781784985912
Format eBook
First published February 2021
Language English
Pages 144
Publisher The Good Book Company
Endorsements

John Anderson

Former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia

This is a must-read for anyone grappling to understand the staggering changes in our society as all the old certainties—and notions of how we relate to each other—are suddenly swept out to sea and replaced by a strident new authoritism that seeks to drown out all dissent. McAlpine is deeply perceptive and writes with the simple clarity that only a master of complex issues can provide. At last we can find a neat and accessible explanation of what is happening in our culture.

Linda Allcock

Author, Deeper Still

With piercing insight, McAlpine skilfully draws parallels between the battles we face today in our culture and familiar Bible stories, impelling us to stand up courageously for the truth of the gospel against a tide of opposition. Through this book I have been forewarned and forearmed by the gospel, which he applies in a clear, radical, inspiring and relevant way. A timely wake-up call that has already proved invaluable in my personal witness.

Gary Millar

Principal, Queensland Theological College, Australia

Stephen McAlpine has written a book that we desperately need. It’s searching, sane, deeply biblical and, best of all, profoundly encouraging. If you want to understand what’s going on in our world right now, then you need to read this book. If you want to work out what it means to live faithfully at school, at university, at work and even at home, then you need to read this book. If you have ever felt like the ‘bad guy’, then you really do need to read this book. Perhaps I haven’t been clear enough: I think everyone needs to read this book!

Independent reviews
 

How To Represent Jesus In A Secular World

Amber Thiessen, January 27th 2020

Are we, as people who love and follow Jesus, ready to answer the questions of a hostile, secular culture, focused on determining their own identity. What about to answer those who are confused and uncertain, looking for a meaningful answer about who they are. Are we ready to engage with the suffering and struggling around us with the truth of life’s meaning, purpose and restoration through the gospel?... continue reading

 

"Stephen McAlpine brilliantly analyzes the culture we live in"

Jesvin Jose, February 3rd 2021

Welcome to post-Christian reality! We are now seeing a new religion built on individual autonomy and personal fulfilment. And it’s a religion that’s hostile to the gospel of Jesus Christ. But we shouldn’t be surprised at such hostility if we know our Bibles well. Why? Because Jesus guaranteed such hostility.... continue reading

 

Challenging and thought provoking

Rachel Sloan, February 18th 2021

This is a challenging but necessary book. Very thought-provoking and one I'd recommend to anyone trying to engage with how the world sees Christians.... continue reading

Customer reviews


06/05/2021

“The challenge and encouragement the church needs today”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

If you, like me, have felt weary in recent times of engaging with culture and wider society, this book is a punchy, hearty reminder of how unbelievably good it is to know and follow Jesus. I’m so grateful for Stephen McAlpine’s winsome, heartfelt call to stick with Jesus even when the going is tough in the current climate.

But praise God that the book doesn’t then just send us back into our holy huddles - Stephen includes really practical suggestions for how we might (and should!) boldly respond to the cultural gauntlet that’s been thrown.

The two things together - encouragement and challenge - make this book such a helpful and timely read.


23/04/2021

“Much needed wake-up call and encouragement for Christians”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

Stephen McAlpine rings a timely wake-up call for Christians today. A sobering reality is honestly and wisely presented: Bible-believing Christians are becoming the bad guys in a post-Christian culture that calls for looking within oneself and living autonomously to find meaning and purpose. The biblical belief of a God-given identity is increasingly being viewed as dangerous to living a life that flourishes. It has so helpfully showed me what it looks like, in the context of the current cultural tide, to live in accordance with Jesus’ teaching that ‘if the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first’ (John 15:18).

Wonderfully, the author gives Christians going against this tide reasons to hope and persevere with joy. Examples in the Bible where God’s people lived in severe hostility are used to model for us the way to live a life in integrity towards men and faithful to God, through which others can be drawn to the true Gospel. It grounds its readers in the certain hope of future glory promised by Jesus that gives joy in the present. It’s so inspiring and encouraging to know that, as God’s people throughout history did, I can live as ‘the best bad guy’ in this world.

Much in-depth thought and Biblical wisdom is put to paper simply and succinctly. It engages its readers so well that it can be finished in one go (almost what I did)! A must read for all Christians.


30/03/2021

“Absolutely brilliant”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

Quite the best book I've read this year. With penetrating analysis Stephen McAlpine understands our culture and shows us how to live as "bad guys". A MUST read.


17/03/2021

“A superb commentary on contemporary issues”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

Much of what I hear and read about being a believer in today's world often leaves me reeling and feeling despondent, helpless and hopeless. "Being the Bad Guys" (with its gender-inclusive use of 'Guys'!) not only provides a very helpful analysis of modern Western culture, it also proclaims the true truth as to who rules over all He has created, thus lifting our eyes to the One seated on the throne. McAlpine is a great communicator, using language and illustrations which are easily accessible. I was able to read his book in an evening, and his down-to-earthiness, warm pastoral heart and honest encouragement have remained in my own mind and heart as a result.


01/03/2021

“BEING THE BAD GUYS-Stephen McAlpine”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

Up to the minute cultural analysis (Philip Schofield, J K Rowling, the BBC’s 100
genders for children… films you may never have heard of…); applied Biblical
exegesis (from Haggai – yes, Haggai! – 1 Peter, the Lord’s call to deny ourselves
and to carry our cross…); recognition of the pickle we’re now in as BAD GUYS
(but we’re NOT [yet?] being persecuted…); plus strategy for Christians/the
Church to witness effectively in the contemporary world… It’s great!

All on the cultural front line, in the trenches of the workplace, and in the thick of
the spiritual battle in community, society and denomination will find inspiration,
guidance and encouragement here. McAlpine has written a tract for the times…
Encourage your fellow believers and buy a copy for them too… They will thank you!


03/02/2021

“Punchy, needed, and hopeful reading for the Church today”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

A more relevant, needed, and punchy book, I haven't read for some time. I couldn't put it down, and finished it within an evening. It is engagingly written, with a graspable main thesis that will provoke thought about our current cultural situation, but crucially will give some helpful pointers in how Christ followers and the wider gospel community can respond. Our generation need to deal with much of this, and reclaim the gospel DNA of self-denial....which is good news. Encouraging and exciting stuff.


02/02/2021

“A concise, surefooted, and hopeful guide to living well in a challenging world”

(Review written for 'Being the Bad Guys')

This is a concise and deeply encouraging examination of how Christianity has ended up on 'the wrong side of history', how we are to understand that repetitional shift, and how we are to live in a world with whose values we cannot biblically line up. Stephen McAlpine writes with clarity and plain conviction about positive and powerful ways in which we can face into our world, seek to live faultlessly and faithfully, while being fearless in our proclamation of the truth. This is a great primer on Christian living in a complex world, and is highly recommended. Extra kudos goes to the author for managing to weave in a helpful and enlightening China Miéville analogy!

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Being the Bad Guys (ebook) | Stephen McAlpine | £5.99 £4.79