This book, and the great sermon that lies behind it, provide a powerful manifesto for living well, living courageously, and living in a way that honors God in uncertain times. I would encourage you to read the sermon, to read the book, and to apply them both deliberately and prayerfully.
Has anyone ever lived in times that were normal? Probably not, I suppose. Every time and every context has its peculiarities, I’m sure. Regardless, there’s no doubt that we are currently living in unusual times—in what seems like a transitionary phase during which old traditions, old morals, and old ways of understanding the world are giving way to new. There are new questions, new concerns, and new challenges to those who want to live well in a world like this one.
Where do we go to learn to live well in new times? There is no better place to turn than to old wisdom—to the very same book that guided our forebears as they lived through the challenges that defined their own eras. The Word of God is, after all, living, active, and powerful, able to teach and to guide us no matter our times and no matter our circumstances.
In The Christian Manifesto, Alistair Begg takes an extended look at Jesus’ Sermon on the Plain (which, though it bears certain similarities, should not be confused with his longer Sermon on the Mount). “This sermon,” he says, is “Jesus’ invitation to you to experience life at its very best. It is his description of what life in his kingdom—a kingdom where all that is wrong is being put right—looks like as we live in this world.”
In this book, we’re going to look at what can be helpfully seen as a “Christian manifesto.” A manifesto is a public declaration or proclamation issued by a monarch or head of state, or by a representative of a company or organization. Here is a manifesto for the Christian life, straight from the lips of Jesus…