The three outsiders are Blaise Pascal, Soren Kierkegaard, and Simone Weil. They were outsiders because they distanced themselves from the institutional church and also the societies around them in their respective eras. They believed that the church failed to take seriously the profound and disturbing relationship with God which is in Jesus Christ. From their position "outside" they questioned the assumptions, practices, and understandings of their church and secular contemporaries. Each produced profoundly original but difficult writings (often in uncompleted fragments), which Professor Allen has organized and interpreted for anyone who asks the question, "How am I to be a Christian?"