Thursday, January 16, 2014

book review—Spiritual Anorexia by Doug Erlandson

a lot of good things to ponder on
There's a lot in this book to consider, even when I'm not completely convinced about some of his points.

Among the good things are a lot of what he says about how the preaching and song lyrics in too many churches today are simply missing the point, and not providing much that they should be. The songs are too often shallow and do little to teach us much of anything about God, while the sermons tend to be more like inspirational speeches than proclamations of the Gospel of Christ. In so many words, these churches have lost their main focus, which is to worship God and teach the Gospel, and what is important for them is to be entertaining, have lots of people in attendance, and not be so “churchy” (my word, I don't think the author used it) as to supposedly drive off the unchurched.

As someone who in the last few years started attending a liturgical type of church, an Anglican one, I have some appreciation for the ways that prayers, Scripture readings, and the Lord's Supper are regularly done in the services at this church. And having listened to a lot of poorlydone sermons while listening to Fighting For The Faith podcasts, it's easy to see how shallow and unimportant things have taken the place of these important things, and the results.

There are some points this author makes that I'm less sure about. He puts some importance on things like vestments and pulpits and the church calendar, things that I'm fine with but I would say are of at best secondary importance, and secondary even as areas of disagreement. They don't take away from the many excellent points he makes.

This book is one that is well worth reading, well worth pondering on, and well worth considering how to put into practice, even where one may not be sure of each point or practice the author endorses.

1 comment:

Licorice Lover said...

This book is being offered as a Countdown for 99 cents, May 7th thru the 13th, 2014. Would you please let your readers know about this? Thanks. Elizabeth Erlandson