04 (April 2014)

Rebels Rescued

Ali McLachlan Ali Mclachlan is the pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Edinburgh
31 March, 2014 1 min read
Rebels Rescued

Brian Cosby
Christian Focus Publications
112, £5.99
ISBN: 978-1-84550-980-4
Star Rating: 3

This book is a foreign buffet, where the restaurant gives you a little taste of everything to introduce you to the palette. Here the strong and simple flavours of Reformed theology are laid out in appetising style and bite-size amount. The TULIP formula and Reformation Solas are pleasantly served with nice analogies and crisp illustrations. Reformers ancient and modern (Calvin, Luther, Piper and Keller) are cited to create an appetite for more. The key players are historically labelled, so the reader knows what to order next time. In all this, the author does a good job.

The book’s usefulness is obvious in a Christianised American educational culture, where Reformed teaching is presently causing a stir. American students would find this helpful polemic ammunition. Without wasting words, the basic schema of Reformed theology is defined and defended. But is being a ‘Calvinist’ on the radar of UK students? Don’t British kids more often need to vindicate “what the Bible says” than the book’s much repeated, “Reformed theology teaches”? For this reason I suspect that Cosby’s useful descriptions of man’s depravity; his excellent illustrations of unconditional election etc. are more likely to be pinched by preachers than explained by students. This said, it is successfully pitched at a teen level. It has only 85 pages of large print which suits a generation who only ever read on a screen. It might be profitably used by youth leaders in group study and would reward any reader the short hours they spend on it.

Ali McLachlan

Ali Mclachlan is the pastor of Grace Baptist Church in Edinburgh
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