Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Book Review: Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart by J.D. Greear

Image courtesy of ChristianAudio.com
Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart is another one of those book titles that catches your eye instantly and causes you to pause to read what it's all about. I had hoped that it would focus on true repentance and forgiveness of sins in Jesus, but honestly feared it was something far from that - especially since it's such a relatively short book. To my delight, this book met and exceeded my expectations.

As someone who had asked Jesus into his heart multiple times and doubted the security of his salvation, J.D. Greear writes on a topic that is applicable not just to the unsure but to all Christians. There are many people I've talked with who believe a friend or loved one is saved because they prayed the "sinner's prayer" when they were young, despite lacking any commitment to the faith and bearing no fruit that is in accordance with righteousness as an adult. They can be perfectly nice people, but nice doesn't get your sins forgiven - only Jesus does. This is where Greear's book is so useful.

The format is very straight-forward, as is evidenced in the table of contents:
  1. Baptized Four Times
  2. Does God Even Want Us To Have Assurance?
  3. Jesus In My Place
  4. What Is Belief?
  5. What Is Repentance?
  6. If "Once Saved, Always Saved," Why Does The Bible Seem To Warn Us So Often About Losing Our Salvation?
  7. The Evidence You Have Believed
  8. When You Continue To Doubt
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Although the book is only 128 pages including two appendices, it is theologically rich. Every page is packed with depth - no space is wasted here. Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart shows biblically what true Christianity is and how this gives assurance of salvation. Greear spends a good amount of time dealing with common insecurities people have with their salvation, particularly in the belief and repentance sections, which I found to be very clear in communicating what it means to truly turn to Jesus. Christians young and old would do well to read this book, if not to correct any errant beliefs about repentance and salvation, than to be reminded where life in Christ begins and ought never to leave (it only digs deeper).

I listened to the audiobook version, narrated by Tom Parks. He has a strong but warm voice, talks clearly, and reads at a decent pace. I preferred to set the audiobook at 2x speed, however, because it felt a little more natural and is a personal preference of mine (I commonly do this with audiobooks).

This would be a great gift for anyone, including nonbelievers who may have a distorted idea of what "belief in Christ" means, and I would definitely recommend it without hesitation. It is biblical, Gospel-focused, practical, yet profoundly rich.

More Information
J.D. Greear's website: www.jdgreear.com
Twitter: jdgreear
Free Study Guide for this book: download here
Interview with J.D. Greear via TheGospelCoalition about Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart
Purchase on Amazon: Hardback / Kindle
Purchase on ChristianAudio.com: audiobook

NOTE: I listened to this audiobook through ChristianAudio.com's reviewers program and was given a copy to download in exchange for my unbiased review.

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