Eternity Is Now in Session: A Radical Rediscovery of What Jesus Really Taught about Salvation, Eternity, and Getting to the Good Place

Reviewed by: Hope Bolinger, a Professional Writing major at Taylor University.



Title: Eternity Is Now in Session: A Radical Rediscovery of What Jesus Really Taught about Salvation, Eternity, and Getting to the Good Place

Author: John Ortberg

Publisher: Tyndale

Publication Date: 2018

Format: Print book

Length: 186 pages


Some Christians misunderstand salvation. They see the sinner’s prayer as a magic formula—a one and done—and carry on the every day unchanged. Or, they often misjudge the idea of eternity and God’s kingdom come as something ethereal and eons ahead in the future after passing away from this world. Ortberg seeks to remedy these misconceptions. In a brief overview of sanctification and what growing in the faith looks like for believers, he shows how salvation isn’t always black and white, Christians and non-Christians, but rather, a lifelong pilgrimage.

The book displayed gusto for refusing to take the watered-down route of salvation often preached in churches. Ortberg explains how Christians tend to lowball Christianity to seekers to sneak them into the kingdom of God through the least amount of effort possible. Ortberg shows how this severely undermines Christianity and does not work when viewing one’s relationship with God as if it were like a marriage. After all, one doesn’t ask their future spouse what’s the least amount of effort they can put in to a marital commitment. Love doesn’t work that way.

As for the writing itself, the pacing flips between dry and straightforward, taking away a star from the assessment of the book. In typical Book of James fashion, Ortberg straddles the line between cheap grace and works-based salvation. Although not everyone will agree with his stances, he presents them well.


Rating (1 to 5)

4 out of 5

Suggested Audience

Christians needing a refresher on sanctification

Christian Impact

Salvation is a lifelong event. A sinner’s prayer uttered as a child in church does not mark the end of a journey to eternity. Sometimes, it doesn’t even mark the beginning.


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About Cecelia Carey

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

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