Yancey's central question is stark: Has the Church lost its capacity to reflect and discharge Christ's grace? We hide behind past success and missionary work. But what about things we haven't done? What about the poor we turn away, the sick we refuse to heal, the sinners we ignore? Is that grace?
His answers aren't comfortable. He admits many Christians embody grace. But as a body, the Church often characterizes itself more by its un-grace than by its commitment to love and peace. Denominational infighting is one way we show "ungrace," though a look at the last 2000 years proves we've failed on many counts.
It's time to change. Yancey calls for radical change, beginning with individuals and filtering up rather than down through the Body of Christ. He describes the "new math of grace," the way Christ disregarded traditional statistics-keeping in favor of meeting needs wherever they were encountered. As His disciples, we're called to the same outrageous economics.
This isn't just physical need, either. The grace we're called to encompasses both the poor and the rich. It knows no borders, cares nothing for ostentation. To the world, it's baffling—why would we embrace weirdos, prostitutes, the ignorant and uneducated, the maimed, the retarded, the social outcasts?
By Christ's power. That's the only answer, though even Christians barely understand it. We're fallen, too, and the only way to make the supernatural effort needed to demonstrate such radical grace is through the God Who saves us. What's So Amazing About Grace?shows us from the Word of God how we can and ought to share grace with all Creation.
Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he's a husband and father who loves church, good food, and weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here
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