Friday, March 7, 2014

BOOK REVIEW: An intelligent book, by a brilliant writer, that should be read ...

When I finished reading my review copy of "Futureville" last night, I couldn't go right to sleep. My mind kept racing with all the people I could think of who I would like to tell about this book.

You're one of those people!

That's because "Futureville," written by Skye Jethani (published by Nelson Books), is one of those important books that people will be impacted by in a way they will tell their friends about it and pass along their edition.

But "Futureville" is so layered with meaning that it can be difficult to describe. An easy approach is to say that Jethani begins with the critical premise that what we believe about the future directly impacts --- in a powerful way --- our lives today. Yet, the book isn't about the future, as the author makes clear from the very beginning of this book.

Jethani writes from the start, "This book is not about the future. It is about the present. It is about determining what sort of life is truly meaningful. It is about rethinking the way we relate to the world and our purpose within it. How we decide what matters today, however, cannot be separated from what we believe about tomorrow."

Like a delightful and delicious seven-layer cake, Jethani serves up some intelligent, even brilliant biblical teaching that layers one important thought upon another until a whole dessert of sound theology is served up.

From his initial premise, the author identifies and describes three key positions from which we look at the future --- evolution, evacuation, and resurrection --- and how those positions determine how we live today. Factored into those views is the ever important but largely neglected theology of vocation. Then layered upon that is an understanding of order, beauty, and abundance. As the author writes his way through these layers of teaching, you'll identify with where the church has gone wrong, and what a more accurate biblical view would be. In the process, some people who have entrenched themselves with certain shallow theological positions will politely find their toes stepped on, but in a way that will positively challenge them to take a closer look at what scripture actually says.

"Futureville" is, happily, not a theologically shallow book like so many written by megachurch pastors whose more trite sermon series have been converted into a paperback. Instead, Jethani takes his time to intelligently establish his points. But this book isn't written for theologians; it's easy-to-understand style leads any reader from a significant premise to a thorough and profound conclusion.

Jethani is establishing himself as a brilliant writer who authors intelligent works that offer important contributions to our thinking. His last book, "With," was also excellent and worth making time to read (you can find my review of that book here http://bit.ly/1qgfzkn). "Futureville" is more than a book I can recommend, it is a book I can endorse. I encourage you to buy it and linger long in the significant lessons you'll find within it.

Scotty

I received this book free from HarperCollins Christian Publishing as part of their BookLook book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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