So Beautiful, written by Leonard Sweet is a book that I simply cannot recommend. It is that void of anything helpful or commendable. Let me correct that, for anyone who feels a need to read the latest in worn-out, tired, ever so slightly re-cast, and generally only warmed-over, “emergent” arguments against what Sweet and others of his ilk would refer to as the ‘traditional church’, this might be worth your time and effort, although there are probably far better books from far better known authors to choose from.
Sweet is a seminary professor and ordained United Methodist elder who would, I am relatively certain, not object to the label “deconstructionist” with respect to his ecclesiology (see page 39 if you are so compelled). From his writing, one might also conclude that he is at least a borderline heretic based on at least a section of his writing. In one particular section, using a computer as the analogy, he suggests that “Version 1.0 is known as the First Testament; Version 2.0 is known as the New Testament; Version 3.0 (the essence of what he is proposing in the book as an alternative to the way the church functions today) is the Third Testament, the Gospel According to … you.” Perhaps I am being thin-skinned, but there is no Gospel according to me. There is only the Gospel according to the inspired human authors whose work has been memorialized for the last 2,000 years in the Canon of scripture.
Not a great deal more needs to be said about this book apart from ‘don’t read it.’ But to the extent you are influenced by the blurbs written in support of a book, you might be interested to know that both Tony Campolo and Tony Jones LOVE this book. Enough said? Yeah.