DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK UNLESS YOU UNDERSTAND THE FOLLOWING 5 THINGS (otherwise you will probably just think we are a-holes)
1. This book is intense. It is not soft. It contains real stories about us that are less than flattering. It is also filled with more observations of problems than it is with answers. This is not done in order to be divisive, or to grumble. The aim of this book is to promote honesty for the sake of the Gospel. It contains strong language and descriptions that WILL be offensive to some. This book is written this way because…
2. This is the way we really talk, and this is the kind of stuff that we really talk about. We want you to know who we are and where we come from. We are Matt and Toby from the band Emery, and Pastor Joey Svendsen. Certain paragraphs are written from one perspective, but everything in these pages comes from one collective voice. We have spent the last twelve years in a mix of bars, nightclubs, churches, tour buses, church counseling sessions, greenrooms, youth groups, Christian retreats and festivals, wild parties, prayer circles, and circles of people doing hard drugs. We recommend that you read the articles that we reference. They are the prequel to this book and will provide you with some experience of our approach.
3. We believe that the Church is awesome and is carrying out Jesus’ mission. We fully support the church. In fact all three of us work, and or serve, at large Mega-Churches. We believe that Jesus changes people, frees them from their sin, and makes them more like Him. We have seen and experiences this first-hand. We believe that Jesus commands us to make disciples and to teach all that He has commanded, which is why…
4. We had to write this book. We feel called and led by God to build BADCHRISTIAN. Jesus’ victory, and the change we see in believers’ lives, is REAL, and as such we don’t need to pretend that we are better than we are. We don’t need to be defensive about our institutions or ourselves. We have to tell the truth and we know that by telling the truth, He is glorified.
5. This is not a book of Theology. This is not Christian Inspiration. This is Matt, Toby, and Joey being themselves. We know that you will disagree with individual points we make or approaches we take. We also admit that we may be wrong, and we humbly ask you to stick it out with us as brothers and sisters. Again, this book is mostly just an assessment of some current problems in Christian culture.
Our next book, THE BADCHRISTIAN MANIFESTO will roll out our plans and potential solutions. For now, we have decided to just give you a personal look at who we are and how we think. Our agenda is the Gospel, and the aim of this book is simply to tell it like we see it; that you are worse than you think you are, and that Jesus is better than you think He is.