Monday, September 12, 2011

Hell is Real

Hell Is Real (But I Hate to Admit It)Hell is Real (But I Hate to Admit It) by Brian Jones is an eye-opening response to Rob Bell's Love Wins. Jones was a pastor for several years but never actually believed in the existence of hell. His years in seminary and conversations with other pastors led him to believe that a loving God would never send anyone to eternal damnation and torment. An experience in prayer forced him to search the Scriptures to research what Jesus really had to say about the matter, and he was shocked to discover that he was really and truly wrong. This discovery gave him "apocalyptic urgency" to save everyone around him, often with less than successful results because of his methods. Jones first wants readers to gain that same sense of apocalyptic urgency to save those they love, and then give them the tools they need to do it successfully. He uses Scripture to shake up readers' sense of God and eternity. His words of blatant truth feel like a sucker punch to the soul, and anyone who reads the book will be hard pressed to remain unchanged by the last page. Jones' advice to teach people about Jesus is completely counter-intuitive to what most Christians have been teaching for years. Don't separate yourself from the world, make yourself an interesting person by learning about different subjects and hobbies so you can have a real conversation, and most importantly, develop a relationship. If more Christians read this book, it will change the often painful, yet true, popular image of Christians as insensitive, judgmental, and elitist. All of this could be hard to swallow by another author, but Jones is engaging and self-deprecating, making the book an enjoyable read, as strange as that seems.

Thank you to The B&B Media Group for providing me with a copy of this book for review.