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Irresistible

Reclaiming the New That Jesus Unleashed for the World
Written by: Andy Stanley
Narrated by: Andy Stanley
Length: 8 hrs and 30 mins
5 out of 5 stars (55 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

An audiobook for anyone who cares deeply about the future of the church.

Once upon a time, there was a version of our faith that was practically...irresistible. But that was then. Today, we preach, teach, write, and communicate as if nothing has changed. As if “The Bible says it” still settles it.

It’s time to hit pause on much of what we’re doing and consider the faith modeled by our first-century brothers and sisters who had no official Bible, no status, and humanly speaking, little chance of survival.

What did they know that we don’t?

What made their faith so compelling, so defensible, so irresistible?

Buckle up...you’re about to find out. More importantly, Andy will invite you to embrace the version of faith that, against all odds, initiated a chain of events resulting in the most significant and extensive cultural transformation the world has ever seen. A version we must embrace if we are to be salt and light in an increasingly savorless and dark world.

“This book challenged me to rethink my thoughts about the Old Testament, discuss with fellow believers what I was learning, do more connecting and less correcting of others, and be salt and light, making things better and brighter. I love how Andy loves people...all of them.” (John Maxwell, author of The 360 Degree Leader)

“It’s time for the church to rethink how it presents a timeless gospel to this generation. In Irresistible, Andy Stanley challenges us to make sure we handle the Scriptures with the kind of integrity that compels everyone to seriously consider following Jesus. Any Christian who reads this book will suddenly find themselves embracing the mission of Jesus with a new passion.” (Reggie Joiner, author, founder, and CEO of Orange)

“Andy Stanley takes you on a historic journey to rediscover the first-generation passion of what it means to faithfully follow Christ. This book will knock you off center, push you out of complacency, and reawaken an unshakable faith that cannot be ignored.” (Craig Groeschel, pastor of Life.Church and author of Hope in the Dark - Believing God Is Good When Life Is Not)

©2018 Andy Stanley (P)2018 Zondervan

What the critics say

“More than any other book I’ve read in years, Irresistible has stretched my view of Scripture. I can’t hear or read a passage from the Old or New Testaments without thinking about Andy’s provocative insights. If you and I take this book seriously, our lives and our churches will never be the same.” (Kara Powell, PhD, executive director of the Fuller Youth Institute and coauthor of Growing Young) 

Irresistible is like a once-in-a-generation shot across the bow. Andy Stanley takes a lifetime of accumulated insight and wisdom about the Christian faith, history, and why the church isn’t connecting with our current culture, and combines them together in a masterpiece work.” (Carey Nieuwhof, author and founding pastor, Connexus Church) 

“Warning: This book will set you and your ministry back - back to the first century and the approach to advancing the gospel modeled by Jesus and the apostles. Andy reminds us that the resurrection was at the center of the first-century apologetic. Then he challenges 21st-century believers to reclaim it as the center of ours as well. I agree with Andy - this approach changed the world once. I’m convinced it could do so again. Read and apply now!” (Frank Turek, Christian author, public speaker, and radio host) 

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Life Changing

As a man who isn’t satisfied with blind faith in anything I frequently dive deep into various topics. When I became a Christian earlier this year I wasn’t satisfied with a once a week interaction so I’ve been absorbing information from people like Andy Stanley who have spent more time then I’ve had contemplating and studying Jesus’ work. This book really answers a lot of questions I had while I was an Atheist and had deepened my love and awe of our creator. I’m definitely going to be re-reading this one.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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thought provoking

At the beginning hard to stay interested after a few chapters it get better but it was well worth going to the end . very informative I will not look at the bible the same and how I talk about my faith and Jesus going forward.

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Thought provoking! !

A very well written book that examines the faith from an exciting and contagious perspective. it will certainly have you searching your heart and providing a solid foundation for sharing the love and salvation found in Jesus.

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I really wish I liked this book

I used to love listening to pastor Andy Stanley 's sermons a few years back. But somehow I find this book has some concepts that are seriously alarming. I do agree with the point that there are certain aspects in the ot that were only addressed and applicable to israelites at the time. But I find it very alarming to say less importance should be stressed on OT. I think everyone should read this book with discernment.

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Why bother with my degree?

I have a four year Bible College degree and I feel this book in 8 hours of listening did more to ignite my faith and understanding of scripture in its proper context and how we communicate it to our world than spending four years at school did. I couldn’t recommend this book more. I already am planning to listen to it again!

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a worthwhile read

overall I enjoyed listening to Andy's views. However I feel that they could have been condensed into a shorter narrative. it is a worthwhile read.

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Challenging

You may not agree with everything Stanley says but what he says will make you think carefully about everything you think you are sure of and filter it through the light of the resurrection. This is a well presented, well thought-out challenge to our modern day church.

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One word. Awesome!

This book is literally transforming and will change the way you study and obey the scriptures in light of the New Covenant versus the Old Covenant. The narration is excellent and the content is logicaly laid out in an easy to understand format. It has answered several questions I have pondered on for years.

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  • Dow Tippett
  • 2019-02-14

Unexpected

About 25 years ago, I was preaching at a church camp, and was asked to teach on apologetics of faith. In that moment I found myself overwhelmed by the arguments and evidence that I had been mounting for years. "How do I condense all this to a 20-30 minute talk?"

A friend of mine suggested, "Doesn't Paul say, 'If Jesus didn't raise from the dead,...our faith is worthless'?" Which I knew to be true.

That evening I taught an entire group of young people, that if the resurrection of Jesus Christ is true, our faith stands strong.

I have heard many quotes of quotes of Andy Stanley, and come to believe that while I agreed with him on most things, I could not agree with his stance on the usefulness of scripture nor it's inspiration.

Now that I have heard his entire discussion (or at least the broad heart), I do not disagree at all.

Stanley does not claim the Hebrew Texts are uninspired!
He does not claim all scripture is not equally useful.

He does claim, and I fully agree, that the Hebrew Texts are not useful as many use them, and that they are not authoritative to direct our lives, nor sustain our faith. On this point too, I unexpectedly agree.

While nothing Mr. Stanley says in Irresistible is new, for far too many inside and outside of the Faith in Jesus, it is a much needed reminder that we are no longer bound in any way by the old law.

This is a well written, well communicated defense of the true Good News of Jesus. I expected it to be, I did not expect to completely agree with it, but I do.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2018-09-29

A TRUE REVELATION

Must read. Remarkably written. Andy has a gift for simplifying the complicated. This book is the reason I joined Audible. Andy has been a long time advocate & I knew hearing his translation would bring the true message home. Mission accomplished. If you've been a "Christian' your entire life, considering it for the very first time, left the church for doubts or "church going" folks...this book is for EVERYBODY.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • g. lee
  • 2018-10-11

Grateful

This book helped me see. Parts of it gave me clarity for things that I intuitively thought were true, but couldn’t express. Parts of it challenged assumptions I have held since childhood. Parts of it reminded me why both what we believe and how we communicate it really matters. All of it makes me grateful that a thinker and communicator like Andy Stanley shared his journey and insight with us.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Clint Byars
  • 2018-11-14

From a pastor

Yes, yes and yes. In no way is Andy recommending we throw out the Hebrew Bible and God’s Law, he’s saying to understand that Jesus fulfilled its requirements for us.

He goes on to beautifully describe how our faith isn’t in a book, it’s in an event, the resurrection of Christ.

I appreciate his simple prescription for a seemingly ineffective, post-Christian church, love one another. If the body of Christ got busy loving one another, and approaching the world in love, people would believe God sent Christ to save us.

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  • Andrew van Ingen
  • 2018-10-13

Thought provoking

I was on the edge of my seat while listening, wondering wether there would come a moment that I would find it tooooo provoking. In the end: I agree 99,99% and have a tiny bit of investigation and thinking to do. Really appreciate the great teaching! Wise thoughts. It’s a great resource. I highly recommend listening to this book!!
Andy’s views are definitely western and for among postchristians. I wonder if he would change a few thoughts in non-western cultures. I guess that’s the homework I have for now.

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  • K Brown
  • 2019-01-30

Listen to the Whole Book

At the beginning, I really enjoyed all of Andy's historical and cultural perspectives. Then Andy begins making some very different and bold statements that were completely foreign to me and I even had to put the book down for a little while. At the end it all came together and I'm glad I listened to it. I'm a Christian, active in my church and I've grown up in a Christian home. This book really challenged my thinking and is making for some good conversation. For the sake of the gospel and future generations I think these points should be discussed. I didn't know where to rate this book. I encourage you to listen to the whole thing, allow yourself to be challenged and decide for yourself.

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  • Varnzell
  • 2018-10-12

Re-reading! Because it’s just that good!

Read & Share!!! This information needs to be share with the entire body of Christ! I’m sharing with my congregation first!

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  • GB
  • 2018-09-29

Amazing!

I’ve listened to Pastor Stanley’s message podcasts for a year or two now. This book chronicles some of those priceless lessons I’ve learned from listening to him. “Irresistible is an awesome book that will stretch the faith you grew up with. People have been criticizing Andy for the views expressed in this book, but very unfairly and blindly. He uses quotes from Jesus and the Apostles to confirm his concepts.

I was thrilled that Andy narrated this. You can here the earnestness and conviction pour out of his voice, his persuasive speaking ability really shines here. This is truly one of the most wonderful and most important books of our time. Highly recommended!

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  • Rev. P. R. Miller
  • 2019-05-04

Somewhere and somehow, Andy Stanley changed...

TLDR: This book is not suitable for understanding the effect the Bible has had on the world or even continues to have on the *world* today. The book can only be good if you believe that American people are somehow unique in the history of the world. If American society makes another paradigm shift, Stanley's "prophetic" words about reaching the post-Christian "nones" will be looked at as another misguided attempt with likely unforeseen (and often terrible) outcomes as so many other misled approaches have. Stanley will help create thousands of disciples that love a God they know precious little about.

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Andy's voice isn't for me, but I always appreciate an author who reads his own works. You get so much out of the vocal inflections that help to clarify meaning. Unfortunately, this doesn't help Stanley.

After listening to the book and then reading others' reviews, I decided to write down my thoughts on what is going on surrounding this book's teaching and the controversy. On the one side, there are the biblical apologists and systematic theologians that are out to defend the Bible from intentionally dismissive statements from the author. On the other hand, there is the North Point model of church ministry that says that there is no cost too high when it comes to making disciples of Jesus Christ. So the two camps talk right past each other for a simple point: they have become two different religions, both claiming to follow Jesus. The reason I call them two different religions is simple: one is dedicated to the full scope of God's glory and examining that, and the other is dedicated to the interpretation of a mission given to the world, and if they cannot agree on the basis of perhaps the most significant mandate of the New Testament, then they aren't in communion anymore. Moreover, I say "interpretation" regarding Stanley intentionally, because I believe Stanley will very likely have a full church that knows very little about the God they love.

Andy Stanley takes the later point of disciple-making to its logical conclusion in his American social climate/audience size if making disciples is the only requirement: we need to stop putting any emphasis on the Old Testament because the legal statements of the Old Testament are hard to jive with progressive social norms of today. If you are going to make Jesus "Irresistible," you must avoid talking about the harder words of the Old Testament. No one has trouble with Isaiah and the virgin birth; most Americans flinch when reading the Law of Leviticus. To an extent, all American Christians understand this, even if they disagree. Ask yourself, if you're a church-goer: when was the last time you heard a preaching series on Numbers? Deuteronomy? Obadiah?

For biblical defenders (disclaimer: I include myself), Stanley's words are unthinkable. However, I could point to Scripture verses that should outright correct Stanley's views all day long, and they would not dent his resolve; a resolve based on a few verses of the New Testament about making disciples. I've personally heard Andy Stanley speak in person at a leadership event, quoting St. Paul in 1 Corinthians 9, to make a case that no cost is too high to reach others and make disciples because St. Paul becomes a Jew to the Jews, and weak to the weak, to justify his stance to "unhitch" ourselves from the Old Testament. Moreover, as a Christian theologian, I could only ask myself when I heard this, "You'd even ignore the glory of what God has done?" This also ignores historical reality (along with statements of the New Testament) and implies that Stanley believes God has wasted his time in allowing his full interaction with humanity to be recorded, only so it could be ignored later. "Unhitching the Old Testament" (Stanley's words at a conference I attended) is similar to asking people to ignore the significant elephant in the room: that Jesus regularly quotes from a book we don't ever talk about.

The two camps are dedicated to different things, and while making disciples is important, the battle between Stanley and others means that we have very different ideas of what constitutes a dedicated disciple of Jesus Christ. Orthodox Christianity will never be able to stand with Stanley on this, and frankly, Stanley should know better. His insisted separation of a Hebrew Bible and Christian Bible pushes right up against the systematic belief of God's immutability, immanence, and impeccability. Also, if Stanley follows this logic out to its conclusion, if the Old Testament has never been palatable to the world, then the New Testament will not be any more palatable.

Stanley's suggestion that we should stop calling the Bible anything other than the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian Scriptures is smoke and mirrors, at best. It makes a genetic distinction without a difference. That would be like saying an omnibus of Andy Stanley's works called "The Collected Works of Andy Stanley," didn't accurately reflect Andy Stanley's history and beliefs.

Either I'm completely nuts or something about this North Point hype-train doesn't make sense. Are there any discerning eyes in over 900 reviews?! The views that Stanley is espousing aren't groundbreaking or new or revolutionary. They've been given in the past, many, many times, and each time, they've been found wanting by orthodox Christianity everywhere.

And as a final gripe, I want to point out something that we all SHOULD be able to agree on just on logical principle: the idea that Andy Stanley is a great communicator is rubbish. In so many articles and reviews, authors tow this bizarre line that says that Stanley is a great communicator. If orthodox Christians everywhere are always "misunderstanding" Stanley, as he and his defenders says in so many rebuttal articles, then he isn't a good communicator. At best, he is a reckless communicator, and this book is the perfect example. You could argue me and say that "Just because Christians disagree with Stanley doesn't mean he's a bad communicator." I would argue back that if your professional peers in ministry aren't just disagreeing but are "misunderstanding" you, you've either failed to communicate your intended message or you're intentionally deceptive - in either case, these are not the hallmarks of ANY great communicator.

5 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Joseph Warren
  • 2019-01-16

Good history- terrible conclusion-couldn’t stomach to finish

Pastor Andy gives a great history lesson for ancient Israel however his analysis on the two covenant’s are a little shaky. His main audience are those that do not read the entire Bible cover to cover and he assumes that what he proposes will be taken true. Unfortunately, had he read the entire Bible and put it in its right context he cannot say that the old covenant is irrelevant and nonexistent. We need both the old and the new testaments to truly understand prophecy and end time events. Jesus did not come to destroy the law but to fulfill it. There are different covenants and when Jesus died on the cross he “nailed” the ceremonial laws to the cross, not the Ten Commandments. If one is not careful, they would assume that we don’t need to keep the commandments at all since we under grace. The books Daniel and revelation are full of symbolism that can only be explained by using the old and new testaments together. Let’s talk about complete truth instead of partial truth.

7 of 12 people found this review helpful