What We Believe and Why
An insightful, accessible, plain-spoken (and a little bit feisty) look at the Christian faith from its Jewish roots to its future hope beyond denominational struggles and doctrinal war. For individuals, small groups and congregations seeking deeper knowledge of the faith and greater maturity in Christ. Includes an exhaustive Glossary Plus of Christian and Jewish terms, an extensive Bibliography, a detailed Index, and a little Humor in the back. The Christian faith the basics and much more. In this sweeping and careful account of the essentials and non-essentials of the faith, Dr. George Koch lays out the foundation of what Christians believe, why they believe it, and how the Bible calls them to live with each other and the world. This begins with understanding being saved, through learning to live and love like Jesus (it s hard!), and the content of eternal life with Him. The profound Jewish roots of the faith are revealed and explained, along with the deep meaning of the Hebrew and Greek behind the words of the Old and New Testaments. The true purpose of prayer is explored in some surprising ways, across denominations and history. Then the nature of God s love is looked at with its ability to burst open prisons of the heart and mind. And obedience: What does God expect from us, and how can we fulfill it? Next is covenant the very way of God with Abraham, Moses, Jesus and us like a marriage: intimate, caring, protected. Then on through issues of the Holy Spirit, peace, mercy, heresy (it s probably not what you think!), the Trinity, and Bible authority. Koch then examines how competing religious concepts arose in the Church, and how these are often used against the explicit commands of Jesus to drive apart believers. He sets forth several specific and biblical steps that opposing Christian groups and individuals can take to begin to embody the unity that Jesus desired of His followers to find true reconciliation with God and with each other. The journey of this book is a challenging one, but can help Christians learn to refocus on the love of God, neighbor and enemy that Jesus taught, rather than differences over concepts about God and the Church. The true purpose of the Christian life is not merely to know more about God, but to know God more. About the author: The Reverend Doctor George Byron Koch (pronounced coke) is Pastor and teacher at Resurrection Anglican Church in West Chicago, Illinois (USA), though this book is intentionally neither Anglican nor denominational in content. He is also a former Senior Vice President of Oracle Corporation, author of a best-selling book on database design (Oracle: The Complete Reference), another book on Christian discipleship and small groups (The Country Parson s Advice to His Parishioners, brought into modern English from an anonymous 1680 text), and numerous articles in magazines and newspapers, ranging from The Wall Street Journal to Christianity Today. His first degree is in Physics, and science is an ongoing a field of interest for him. His doctoral studies focused on healing and reconciliation, and he continues to teach on these subjects.