Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Relentless in Red Flags

Book Review for John Bevere’s Relentless

I picked John Bevere’s book, Relentless, mainly because of the title. I was at a place where I was feeling “relentless” about Christ—similar to how the Canaanite woman was unyielding in her request for Jesus to heal her daughter. (Matthew 15:22-28) Bevere is a good writer with the ability to use anecdotes from his life experiences to draw the reader in for a compelling, but questionable ride. 

By chapter 2, I began to sense red flags in my spirit about this book. I’m not a pastor, a theologian, or an apologist; but Bevere’s assertion of a “take-back plan” was troublesome. He posited that God’s hands were tied with mankind until Jesus came and took it back from Satan. But according to Psalms 103: 19- The Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all. I’m compelled by this scripture to believe that God can do whatever He wants and Satan is being used by God for His purposes.

I also struggled with Bevere’s theology of sickness and poverty because of my brothers and sisters in Christ languishing in North Korean and Saudi Arabian prison (as well as in many other parts of the world) because of their confession of faith. They could easily be healthy and wealthy if they would just deny Christ.

Bevere’s assertion that 98% of Christians don’t clearly understand grace was also problematic. I could be wrong, but I believe most believers understand that grace is God’s favor and power on us especially when we struggle. Bevere’s theology doesn’t seem to take into account that our weaknesses or doubts are covered by God’s grace…especially when our faith is shaken by trials and troubles—that it is God’s grace, not our strong faith that makes the difference.

Perhaps I fall into that 98% of people; even so I wouldn’t recommend this book to a new believer or someone struggling in their faith. I would be concerned that they would build their faith on the sand of questionable teachings and not on the Rock of truth—our Lord Jesus’ teachings on faith.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this honest review.

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