(Book review) The Explicit Gospel


Reviewed by Gabby Carlson, a professional writing major at Taylor University and an editor for the campus newspaper, The Echo.

 


Introduction

Title: The Explicit Gospel

Author: Matt Chandler with Jared Wilson

Publisher:  Crossway

Date: (2014 reprint

Format: Paperback

Length: 240 pages

OVERVIEW

The Explicit Gospel is a book designed to challenge Christians who have been living in monotony for too long. Matt Chandler asks followers of Jesus to make a commitment not only to believe Jesus is Lord, but also to proclaim it radically.

 

He begins the book with a part called “The Gospel on the Ground,” which highlights God, man, Christ, and a response. In the first section he describes the character of God and how impossible it is to love Him fully, but how gracious He is to love us completely. He then talks about mankind (about us), and how our sin separates us from love. But Jesus connected us on the ground by dying and loving us supremely. The last section, the response, is eye catching. The entirety of the book is devoted to giving Christians a better understanding of who God is, and, in turn, how to live one’s faith radically and in relationship with people. So the response section is not the reader’s own response, but a reassurance that his or her job is to share the gospel, not elicit a positive response. God is the God of the heart and He is responsible for the response of His creation.

 

The second part of the book is titled “The Gospel in the Air.” This highlights the things humans can’t quite comprehend, the subheads being Creation, the Fall, Reconciliation and Consummation. In the beginning, creation was inherently good, but when humans fell, creation did as well, and it groans and longs to be back to the fullness it once held. The section on reconciliation talks about how Jesus is the missing link and how He will restore His children when the time is right. The end of this section highlights a life with an eternal purpose. Chandler challenges Christians to think forward to Christ’s coming and what eternity will look like for them when they live out their life purpose with an everlasting mindset.

 

Chandler concludes the book with warnings against complacency. A radical, unbridled faith that is not focused on oneself or personal works is what Chandler wants his readers to understand.

 

Chandler never makes a claim to know everything about living the Christian faith radically, but he provides a full Bible perspective. Each concept and chapter comes with Bible verses connecting the Old and New Testament, giving God’s word cohesiveness in these concepts.

 

ASSESSMENT

Rating (1 to 5)

5 stars

Suggested Audience

Adults, 25 and older

Christian Impact

The entire book encompasses what it means to be a Christian. It reminds believers of God’s glory. Yet, Chandler does not only talk about a loving God, but a severe God as well. He is the God of a small child being born, but He is also the God of hurricanes, tsunamis, and earthquakes. Chandler is blunt in his views of how, through biblical study and interpretation, a God follower should view creation and the Creator.



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About Evangelical Church Library Association

The Evangelical Church Library Association, founded in 1970, is a fellowship of Christian churches, schools, and individuals.

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