Tuesday, April 22, 2008
I've read many reviews of Vintage Jesus by Mark Driscoll & Gerry Breshears over the past month. Some very pleased with the book, others disappointed in Driscoll's choice of crude or irreverent comments. Before I briefly address the topic of Driscoll's that seems to be most widely discussed in the blogsphere of the choice of words and comments, I'll share things that I thought were great about the book.
I thought Driscoll touched on some great questions and was very biblical in his responses. Some of the questions addressed in the book are:
Is Jesus the Only God?
Why did Jesus come to earth?
Why did Jesus' mom need to be a virgin?
What did Jesus accomplish on the cross?
Dis Jesus Rise from the dead?
What makes Jesus superior to other saviors?
The questions were all answered in a way that was easy for almost anyone to understand. The content was clear and concise, not beating around any bush or shying away from the truth or hard questions. As the book went on I thought I became more theologically precise. A majority of the joking was at the beginning of the book and maybe that was what made me take the second a half a bit more serious and I thought it was more focused
I did think at times Driscoll's comments were taken a bit too far, resulting in me having some apprehensions of who I might share the book with. But I would recommend the book on the basis of its theological insights. It was a great book that made me think and helped me to understand and better articulate the gospel and other biblical topics. And I will admit there was a time or two I laughed out loud in response to a comment.
I had heard another person say that the type of language Driscoll uses really dates the book. The current lingo may be a strength now, but in 30 years will people really follow what was being said, will they take it seriously? What would you think if reading a book from the 70's is Jesus called his disciples groovy or referred to something as far out? I would agree, making this a downfall of the book since some of his jokes are meant somewhat to make the point it may be a bit confusing years down the road to understand, but the biblical points and solid theology will remain with or without the jokes.
I will say after reading Driscoll's other books and now Vintage Jesus I am looking forward to Driscoll's forthcoming book Death by Love set to come out October of 2008
Here are a few other reviews (mixed reviews) of Driscoll's book from a few men that I respect.
Irish Calvinist - Erik Raymond
Locusts and Wild Honey - Don Elbourne
Challies.com - Tim Challies