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.