Recommendation: The Divine Conspiracy by Dallas Willard

On a level with C.S. Lewis’s Mere ChristianityDallas Willard’s The Divine Conspiracy is one of those books that reframes everything you know about following Jesus. Read it yourself and buy another copy as a Christmas present for a friend or relative. I’m sure you’ll enjoy talking about it as you both read through it.

Here are the chapter titles to pique your interest:

  • Chapter 1 Entering the Eternal Kind of Life Now
  • Chapter 2 Gospels of Sin Management
  • Chapter 3 What Jesus Knew: Our God-Bathed World
  • Chapter 4 Who is Really Well Off?—The Beatitudes
  • Chapter 5 The Rightness of the Kingdom Heart: Beyond the Goodness of Scribes and Pharisees
  • Chapter 6 Investing in the Heavens: Escaping the Deceptions of Reputation and Wealth
  • Chapter 7 The Community of Prayerful Love
  • Chapter 8 On Being a Disciple, or Student, of Jesus
  • Chapter 9 A Curriculum for Christlikeness
  • Chapter 10 The Restoration of all Things

And here are a few of the things I’ve highlighted throughout the book:

Does the gospel I preach and teach have a natural tendency to cause people who hear it to become full-time students of Jesus? Would those who believe it become his apprentices as a natural “next step”? What can we reasonably expect would result from people actually believing the substance of my message?
Traveling through space and not finding God does not mean that space is empty any more than traveling through my body and not finding me means that I am not here.
Special experiences, faithfulness to the church, correct doctrine, and external conformity to the teachings of Jesus all come along as appropriate, more or less automatically, when the inner self is transformed. But they do not produce such a transformation.