As a blogger that reviews books I occasionally receive books from certain publishers for free. These are sent with the agreement that I will post a review of the book on a site such as Amazon and on my blog. Thankfully I am not required to always be positive in these reviews because many of these books are, for lack of a better word, junk. Unfortunately this is one of those books.
I like James MacDonald. I have heard him speak several times. I have followed him via twitter and the blogosphere. I am a fan of the Elephant Room series. I was excited to get this book and to read it. I know MacDonald to be strong when it comes to the Bible and to teaching it. So I read this book and was soon quickly disappointed. I finished the book feeling like it was just not a good book, so I re-read it and finished with the same feeling, yet even stronger. I gave it a third reading and could not get through it that time.
I am not sure MacDonald knows his audience. He writes as if to someone completely outside the church, yet that is not to whom this particular book is marketed. In doing so this book comes across extremely surface level and very very biblically shallow. He also appears to have a slight humanistic bent in the book and say that we are capable of change on our own. There was a sense of work harder, do more that came across, which is Moralistic Therapeutic Deism and not the Gospel.
I would not recommend this book to you, if you are looking for something along the lines of this title I would suggest something by Jerry Bridges, or Tim Chester’s You Can Change. I am not going to give up on MacDonald, but I am going to give up trying to read this book.