Justin’s #59 – Finding Truth: 5 Principles for Unmasking Atheism, Secularism, and Other God Substitutes, Nancy Pearcey, 384 pages

November 9, 2015 // 0 Comments

I read Nancy Pearcey’s book, Total Truth and “Finding Leonardo” last year and found them to be really compelling. Pearcey’s experience at L’Abri Fellowship with Francis Schaeffer inspired her to reclaim her Christian faith and delve into areas of Philosophy and Apologetics that are often times denigrated by evangelicals. In this follow up book to Total Truth, Pearcey wants to equip Christians with tools that combat idols. Taking a page from Romans 1, Pearcey builds her thesis on verses 16-32. Romans 1 is easily one of my most favorite chapters of scripture. She calls it a guide to apologetics. Pearcey’s utmost concern is about worldview. She argues that Christianity is the most coherent worldview among all the philosophies of the world. This is why the Apostle Paul can say, in Romans 1:16, that he is “not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ.” It is only through the Christian worldview that men can have a dignified and complete view of humanity. Pearcey has a 5 step guide to diminishing idols in our lives. She argues that idols don’t just have to be other gods, but an idol is defined as anything that replaces God. Therefore, philosophies can be idols because they inherently replace […]

Justin’s #33 – How Should We Then Live: The Rise and Decline of Western Thought and Culture, Francis Schaeffer, 288 pages

July 26, 2015 // 1 Comment

I read Nancy Pearcey’s book, “Total Truth” last year. Pearcey became a Christian when she visited the L’Abri house in Switzerland which Schaeffer founded. This was my first introduction to Schaeffer. A couple of months ago, I was referred to this book and I am not disappointed to say that I’ve read it; just disappointed that I didn’t read it sooner! I think “How Should”, published in 1976, could be considered one of Schaeffer’s most lasting achievement before he died 10 years later. It traces human thought through three veins: the theological, the philosophical, and the scientific. He examines these three categories in detail through various stages of human development in the West. He starts in Greece and Rome, moves to the Middle Ages, the Renaissance,  the Reformation (he spends two chapters here),the enlightenment, the rise of modern science, the breakdown in philosophy and science (19th century), and the present. In each period, he closely looks at the reigning philosophical system and demonstrates how this influenced not only those who went after them, but how theology was changed because of it. Philosophy is moving forward where each system builds on top of the system before it. To discover how we […]

Mark’s #9 – Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi

March 5, 2015 // 1 Comment

Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity Is a book that is part autobiography, part history, part Christian apologetics, and part testimony of Nabeel Qureshi’s conversion from Islam to Christianity. For the purposes of this review, I will focus on four key takeaways from this book 1. The value of investing in meaningful friendships with muslims (or any nonChristian)  Nabeel Qureshi is a first generation American whose parent’s came from Pakistan and who’s Grandparents served as Muslim missionaries in Indonesia and Uganda.  As part of a devout muslim family, Nabeel grew up praying arabic prayers and joyfully observing all of the traditional Muslim holidays and traditions. Nabeel never had any reason to doubt his Muslim beliefs, and in fact, was taught by his parents to be an evangelist for Islam.  This was not a difficult task for Nabeel, as most professing Christians he spoke with had no idea about Islam and an almost equally weak understanding of historic Christian beliefs. This scenario changed as Nabeel entered his freshman year of college and became friends with David – A Christian who was prepared to answer objections to Christianity and who cared enough to pursue Nabeel as a friend.  Over […]

JRF’s #1: The Abolition of Man by C.S. Lewis – 113 pages

January 5, 2015 // 1 Comment

This short book, originally given as a series of lectures in 1943, is a powerful critique of moral relativism.  It is remarkable for a number of reasons.  Firstly, it is remarkable for it’s clarity and cleverness – although since it is written by C.S. Lewis perhaps that is not that remarkable after all.  What I found especially striking however was how prophetic Lewis’ critique was.  We are now living in a society that is gorging itself on the rotten fruit of the trees that were seedlings that Lewis warned about in his day.  Just as the reader of Orwell’s 1984 or Huxley’s A Brave New World will get chills seeing the parallels in those fictional societies with our own, even more so will readers of The Abolition of Man see how accurately Lewis predicted the trajectory of Western society.  He powerfully lays bare the suicidal absurdity of abandoning objective values and “traditional” morality and instead demanding individual moral autonomy. This is a must read for anyone wanting to understand, explain, and redemptively engage the postmodern (and post-postmodern) worldview.   “In a sort of ghastly simplicity we remove the organ and demand the function. We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and […]

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