The Scriptures are an essential aspect of the Christian faith. But we have often equated them with the living Word Himself, even elevating them above the One to whom they point. In doing so, we have distorted their central message—and our view of God. Tragically, this has caused multitudes of people unnecessary doubt, confusion, and pain in their encounters with the Scriptures. Author and theologian Bradley Jersak has wrestled deeply with such passages over many years. He has experienced the same questions, doubt, and pain. In A More Christlike Word, he offers a clarifying and freeing path forward, whether you consider yourself a believer, a doubter, or a skeptic, inviting you to a better and more ancient way to read the Scriptures. He calls this path the “Emmaus Way” because it focuses on Jesus Christ as the final Word on God. It demonstrates how all Scripture, by design, points to Jesus, revealing the true nature of the Father. Your journey on the Emmaus Way will open up to you the fullness of the Scriptures, and, most important, lead you to the God who deeply loves and welcomes you.
My thoughts: I have mixed thoughts about this book. While I can appreciate that Jersak has called readers to go to God for discernment of the Scriptures, I don't agree with him on several points that he makes. I think that he is over simplifying God when he says that God is love and that is all. We like to try to put God in box, but He is justice, mercy, love all rolled into one. Mercy cannot rob justice.
I can say that I appreciate his thoughts on reading the Bible through the lens of Jesus Christ and praying for discernment when it comes to what we read.
Overall though, I cannot recommend this book because I don't agree with that author.
I received this book from Celebrate Lit. This is my honest review.
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About the Author
Bradley Jersak is the Dean of Theology & Culture, a modular graduate studies program at St. Stephen’s University in New Brunswick, Canada. He is also the editor-in-chief of Clarion-Journal.com. Bradley and his wife, Eden, have lived in the Abbotsford area of British Columbia since 1988, where they served as pastors and church planters for twenty years. Bradley is the author of a number of nonfiction and fiction books, including A More Christlike God, A More Christlike Way, Her Gates Will Never Be Shut, Can You Hear Me?: Tuning in to the God Who Speaks, and The Pastor: A Crisis. He has an M.A. in biblical studies from Briercrest Bible College and Seminary, an M.Div. in biblical studies from Trinity Western University/ACTS Seminary, and a Ph.D. in theology from Bangor University, Wales. He was also a Visiting Scholar at the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom, for post-doctoral research in patristic christology.
More from Bradley
The book acknowledges and addresses people’s real struggle to harmonize hard passages of Scripture with their view of a loving God.
Have you ever felt that seemingly “toxic” texts in the Bible suffocate rather than strengthen faith? If so, then this book will help you find a way to hear the life-giving Word speaking through Scripture—even the tough parts. Bradley Jersak faces difficult passages head-on with honest, provocative, wise, and stimulating insights. Here is an accessible and informed guide to Christ-centered biblical interpretation.
—Rev. Dr. Robin Parry
Author, The Evangelical Universalist and The Biblical Cosmos
If you find the Bible heavy lifting rather than finding yourself carried by Jesus, the incarnate Word himself, and his indescribably good gospel of love, A More Christlike Word is for you. It will invite you to move from simply reading verses through an unexamined lens to always listening for the revelation of Christ, by Christ, who reveals what is true concerning the relentless, renewing love of God our Father, and, thus, what is true about us as his beloved ones.
—Dr. Cherith Nordling
Sessional Lecturer, Regent College, Vancouver
Author, Knowing God by Name
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To celebrate his tour, Bradley is giving away the grand prize package of a $20 Starbucks card and a copy of the book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.