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Costly grace and glorious privilege

Simon Guillebaud


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Costly grace and glorious privilege

Simon Guillebaud



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 ‘Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God - this is your spiritual act of worship.' Sacrifice…It's a familiar word, but what does literally mean for us to respond to the Apostle Paul's timeless call to offer our bodies to God as living sacrifices?On the pages of this short book you'll find an urgent and serious rallying cry - a call for God's people everywhere to sacrifice everything for Him. Simon Guillebaud draws on the examples of many Christians who have gone before, and passionately teaches again Paul's challenge, leaving us with some probing questions to answer…Where are the young men and women who will hold themselves to be something cheap in comparison to God's work? Where are those who will live their lives for Christ's sake? Where are those who will live dangerously and be reckless in His service? Where are those who love Him and the souls of men more than their own reputation? Are you in?
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Simon Guillebaud

Simon Guillebaud

Simon Guillebaud. Author, speaker, social entrepreneur, family man, cyclist and charity founder, Simon Guillebaud had a very clear call to Burundi in 1999, when it was regarded as the most dangerous country on earth. Having unexpectedly survived 7 years of genocide and civil war, he set up GLO with the vision to transform Burundi and beyond through holistic mission, working with gifted local leaders of integrity.

Now married with three children, he and his wife Lizzie have both been awarded an MBE for their services to Burundi.

Simon is author of the bestselling Choose Life – 365 readings for radical disciples, voted ‘Devotional of the Year 2015’. He is also the author of ‘More than Conquerors‘, ‘Sacrifice‘ and ‘Dangerously Alive‘ and has over 25,000 social media followers who read his challenging, frequently shocking, sometimes amusing and always authentic tweets and blog posts.

He places a very high value on his family life and in his books is keen to acknowledge his partnership with his wife, Lizzie in the way they aspire to live out their Christian lives together.

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Overall rating

4.3 based on 6 reviews

Too much guilt, not enough love.

I am sorry to disagree with the earlier reviewers, but I think this book uses guilt to motivate people to sacrifice, rather than fostering love for Christ which leads to a life lived for him. Doing something because you feel guilty is not doing it for the right reason. 1 Cor 13.3 "If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing." (ESV). I felt that the tone is that God has done so much for us, and we haven't done enough for him, and we had better do something about it. The unspoken question is how much is enough? While I agree with Guillebaud that radical Christian living is possible whatever one's calling, the examples given are mostly missionaries. Does this mean that only missionaries, especially those to dangerous countries, are really living the Christian life to the full? That opens the door to a form of Christian elitism that goes against the equality of all callings (1 Cor 12). An example is also quoted with approval of a Togolese woman who sold herself into slavery so that she could give money as an offering. I was shocked when I read that: Jesus came to set us free, not for us to make ourselves slaves of men. It is such a shame, as I agree that many Western Christians (no doubt myself included) are too complacent and don't love and live for our Redeemer as much as we should. But a message of "you have failed, try harder" is not the Gospel. It is as we realise that we have failed and that we are forgiven in Christ by his love for us, that our love and sacrifice for him will grow.

Stephen Ayre

Massively challenging!

Really challenged when reading this! An excellent book about sacrificing all. Definitely a recommended read - but take time to do so properly, and consider and absorb what is said!

Nick Brake

I cannot recommend it enough.

This is a small book which packs a huge punch. The author, a long–term missionary to Central Africa, takes the verses in Romans 12.1–2 and rigorously applies them to any Christian. He tells you clearly and convincingly how to be a living sacrifice for Jesus. Can we expect Christians to live that kind of life anymore? Guillebaud answers with a resounding ‘Yes!’. He does it by using his own experiences in Africa, and those of martyrs who were known to him, as well as choosing some truly outstanding quotations and examples to push for such a commitment from us modern–age believers. Some of these struck home to me: Bonhoeffer on cheap grace given the full context (pp.13–14); the extraordinary life of Robert Thomas, who died in Korea before even preaching once but whose Bibles were read as wallpaper and brought numerous conversions; Thomas Merton’s prayer (p.34): ‘I believe the desire to please you does in fact please you (more than anything else)’. The book is worth the price for these illustrations alone. He pleads for the logical sacrifice of a total consecration to Jesus as Lord. He seeks to exhort us to live a life, like Jesus, of holy living that impacts our culture. In the past, others have called for a sacrificial faith. This book is such a call to our generation to read, meditate upon and apply. It will not take very long to read but it could change us all for ever. I cannot recommend it enough.

Andrew Chappel

The privilege of sacrifice

A written sermon on Romans 12:1 challenging Christians to take up their cross. To *really* take up their cross, motivated by the mercies of God given to us. Lots of examples from history and Burundi. This is a great little book that packs a massive punch! Read if you dare. It'll be a book for the term for us at Church by the Bay. Thanks for this!

Gerry Straker


This book was given to me by a friend, and not knowing quite what to expect, having now read it I feel compelled to comment; what a challenge! to me personally and to any Christian who thinks they are generally 'doing just fine' in the practical application of their faith. I, like anyone else who reads this litter book, have some really soul searching to do. Well worth a read.

Denis Tones

I beg you to read it.

When Howard Guinness wrote ‘Sacrifice’ in 1958 it set a high water mark on literature to challenge Christians. It is a classic, but, I believe it has recently been surpassed by Simon Guilibaud’s book of the same title! The little book is a practical, challenging exposition of Romans 12:1&2, and I would go on my knees to beg you to read it.

Roger Carswell

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