Some books I buy just for the title, and this was one of them. The subtitle is even better “12 Hard Question for the World’s Largest Religion.” We need to be asking the hard questions. We need to be encouraging our people, especially our youth, to ask the hard questions. Why? Because unfortunately so much of our American evanjelly churchianity ignored those questions and instead sold people a false narrative where we are the center of the story and God’s role is to help us achieve our dreams. Facing the hard questions head on mortally wounds this poisonous nonsense.
Rebecca McLaughlin has put together a helpful book, a VERY helpful book. It is also a very well organized, accessible, and intelligently written book. Organized simply around twelve of the hardest questions we Christians hear (or should be hearing) against Christianity – such as: “Aren’t we better off without religion?” and “How can you say there is only one true faith?” and “How can you take the Bible literally?” and…my personal fav…”Hasn’t science disproved Christianity?” [One nugget for you from page 111 – “To hear the New Atheists today, one would scarcely think that modern science was first developed by Christians.”]
McLaughlin is super smart, eloquent, extremely well read, and quite funny – all of which make reading this book a faith-building and spiritually edifying experience. She is also vulnerable. In the “I wasn’t expecting that” category – she transparently tells of her own struggles with faith and sinful temptations, and her journey to faith. This only increases the legitimacy and credibility of her work. McLaughlin is very clear on difficult issues such as sexuality and gender, but it is mixed with the sensitive reality from only someone who has truly been there can bring. The beauty in that she pursued these struggles with an open Bible and a curious brain and came to the rock solid conclusion that Scripture is still authoritative – and we’ve got to think more deeply on these issues and those like them.
Conclusion: Buy this book. Read this book. Scour the footnotes and read the sources she quotes. (Even the irrational atheist authors…maybe ESPECIALLY them.) Ask the hard questions with an open Bible and the brain that God put in your melon, and by confronting these questions head on – let’s pray the church only grows stronger.
For more information – see the author’s website, including links where to purchase.