Only rarely is a single book an event. This book is such a rarity. Rita Brock and Rebecca Parker show that solid scholarship can be expressed with passion and literary grace as they recover the beauty of an earth-loving Christianity lost for a thousand years beneath dry creeds and formulae and poisonous myths of sacralized violence.--Daniel C. Maguire, author of "A Moral Creed for All Christians""Every Christian theologian and preacher should read this book and be profoundly challenged."--James H. Cone, author of "Malcolm & Martin & America"""Saving Paradise" challenges us to recover an ancient world view that is life transforming and earth affirming. It reminds us of a biblical perspective that does not reserve paradise for the dead but invites the living to find grace, justice, peace and compassion-here and now-amid the jangling discord of violence and war. It may mark the beginning of a paradigm shift in contemporary Christian understanding and interfaith dialogue."--Reverend James A. Forbes, Jr., president and founder of the Healing of the Nations Foundation, senior minister emeritus of the Riverside Church of New York City "How did Christianity become a religion of finitude and guilt rather than one of promise and celebration? Brock and Parker ran with the evidence, showing us the importance of art, ritual, devotional practices, and liturgical space for early Christians. This tangible past transformed their research and led them to see that paradise in this world lies at the heart of Christianity." --Diane Apostolos-Cappadona, author of "Dictionary of Christian Art""This powerful, unprecedented, and compelling book brings real Christianity out of the shadows. It lights up the religious roots of American society at a time when progressives need to challenge conservative politicians who use Christianity as a false prop for their ideology."--George Lakoff, author of "Don't Think of an Elephant!"