The Gospel of God’s grace needs to be explicitly preached and taught so that desperate hearts stand a chance of experiencing real life transformation and change. We have to proclaim the truth about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the need for sinners like you and me to repent and believe that God in Christ has provided atonement for and forgiveness of our sins through the cross. But when this is not the central message of the Church, it becomes weak, people are sold a lie, and going through the motions and playing church become the norm. It becomes nothing more than a religious social club with some humanitarian causes mixed in.
We can easily make the stories of the bible about us. About having a better life, a marriage that others want, raising our children, all good things but that is not the gospel. Bargerhuff pulls 14 well known bible stories or misconceptions that we have to make the gospel central. How easy it is to make facing our fears in David and Goliath about us and not about the character of God. We all do this and what we can learn from our biblical characters, they did it as well. The story of Jonah is a prime example of this and even shows how much we are like Jonah. God pursues Jonah and the people of Nineveh thru Jonah. If the glory is about the people, then the glory of God is not the main thing.
Having a correct understanding in context will only help us have a hunger for the things of God. Who he is and what he has done. It will encourage us to lead a more faithful life where God is central and we are more spirit led to think more of others than ourselves. Bible interpretation is about context and how we view God correctly. Taking things out of context only leads us to believe incorrectly in a god that is egoistical and not as a God who redeems.
I highly recommend.
A Special Thank You to Bethany House Publishers and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.