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Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church

, 2008
ISBN: 9781441252173
  • Format:Digital



The church in America has willingly been taken captive. The captors are American culture and ideals: consumerism, pragmatism, self-sufficiency, individualism, positive thinking, personal prosperity, and nationalism. These are antithetical to the Gospel, but we have nevertheless made them part and parcel of it. We’re well on our way to a Christless Christianity.

The result? A faith that is—in Michael Horton’s prophetic words—“trivial, sentimental, affirming, and irrelevant.” This alternative “Gospel” is a message of moralism, personal comfort, self-help, self-improvement, and individualistic religion. It trivializes God, making him a means to our selfish ends.

In this critically acclaimed book, Horton skillfully diagnoses the problem and points to the solution: a return to the unadulterated Gospel of salvation. Here is a must-read for anyone concerned about the state and future of Christianity and the church in America.

The Logos Bible Software edition of Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church is designed to encourage and stimulate your study of the Bible. Scripture passages link directly to your preferred translation and important theological concepts link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. In addition, you can perform powerful searches by topic and find what other authors, scholars, and theologians have to say about the subject matter, making this collection ideal for studying and interpreting the Bible.

Key Features

  • Addresses the problems facing Christianity in America
  • Encourages readers to return to the unadulterated Gospel of salvation
  • Helps readers in the path for change

Praise for the Print Edition

A more important and timely volume could not have been written.

—Parker T. Williamson, editor emeritus and senior correspondent, The Presbyterian Layman

Horton’s brush is broad—expect loud lamentation from the evangelical camp—but the picture he paints is largely accurate.

Thabiti M. Anyabwile, senior pastor, First Baptist Church, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

Christless Christianity establishes Michael Horton as the outstanding protagonist for classical Protestant orthodoxy. His wide-ranging and carefully researched examples show how our churches and megachurches have pandered to the culture with Gnostic, Pelagian, moralistic, and self-help heresies bereft of the saving action of Jesus Christ. He leaves us with a profound trust and a sure confidence in our biblical faith. What could be more important?

—C. FitzSimons Allison, retired Episcopal bishop, Diocese of South Carolina

Product Details

  • Title: Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church
  • Author: Michael Horton
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Publication Date: 2012
  • Pages: 256

About Michael Horton

Michael Horton is the J. Gresham Machen Professor of Systematic Theology at Westminster Seminary California. He is the main host of the White Horse Inn radio broadcast and the editor-in-chief of Modern Reformation magazine. He is the author or editor of more than 20 books.

  • Title: Christless Christianity: The Alternative Gospel of the American Church
  • Author: Michael Horton
  • Publisher: Baker
  • Print Publication Date: 2008
  • Logos Release Date: 2013
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subjects: Evangelicalism › United States; Jesus Christ › History of doctrines--United States; United States › Religious life and customs
  • ISBNs: 9781441252173, 9780801013188
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2020-06-05T19:51:06Z
Michael Horton

Michael Horton has taught apologetics and theology at Westminster Seminary California since 1998. In addition to his work at the Seminary, he is the president of White Horse Media, for which he co-hosts the White Horse Inn, a nationally syndicated, weekly radio talk-show exploring issues of Reformation theology in American Christianity. He is also the editor-in-chief of Modern Reformation magazine. Before coming to WSC, Dr. Horton completed a Research Fellowship at Yale University Divinity School.

A member of various societies, including the American Academy of Religion and the Evangelical Theological Society, Dr. Horton is the author/editor of 20 books, including a series of studies in Reformed dogmatics, whose final volume (People and Place: A Covenant Ecclesiology) was published in 2008. In addition to the popular Putting Amazing Back Into Grace, Dr. Horton’s latest books are Covenant and Salvation: Union with Christ, Lord and Servant: A Covenant Christology, and A Better Way: Rediscovering the Drama of God-Centered Worship. He has written articles for Modern Reformation, Pro Ecclesia, Christianity Today, The International Journal of Systematic Theology, Touchstone, and Books and Culture. Dr. Horton is a minister in the United Reformed Churches in North America. He has served two churches in Southern California. He resides in Escondido, California, with his wife, Lisa, and their four children.