I gave up on Good Reads because I read so fast I couldn't keep up with my "shelves" or read and unread books. I have bookshelves that are overflowing with books and I was so excited when I found out that a secondhand bookstore was opening up in our area.
I'm often the one that friends come to for book recommendations - and after mentioning books here on the blog I've had many SIL readers come to me for recommendations too - so I thought I'd start sharing some book reviews (and also tell you the best places to buy said books) every now and again.
First, I wanted to start with a book that I devoured in a morning and have thought about ever since; Jesus or Nothing by Dan Dewitt
There is nothing better than a book that makes you stop and think, long after you turn that last page. Jesus or Nothing does exactly that.
As you might have seen me mention on the blog over the past couple of months, we recently had a church growth weekend at our church with Paul Borden from Growing Healthy Churches. The aim of the weekend was to give our church strategies to grow – that is, to bring more people from our community to Jesus to join our church family.
But there’s one major barrier to this goal. We’re trying to reach people who don’t know Jesus, who don’t go to church or who may have gone to church in the past and for some reason or another have been turned away. That barrier is why it’s so important that we change our ways of connecting with these people.
One of the things that I think is so important in any relationship is understanding both sides – because you cannot have a friendship without mutual understanding and acceptance.
Jesus or Nothing asks the reader to consider both sides and to ask yourself; What if? As Dan says in the book “the gospel doesn’t enjoy a middle category immune from truth or falsehood” – each of us as human beings have to choose, it’s either Jesus or Nothing.
Now, you might be thinking this is just a “churchy” book, but this is actually a book I’d recommend to everyone – regardless of where you stand on religion.
It shows us that, as humans, we all have an incessant desire for truth and understanding – and we all want to find meaning in our lives, regardless of what we do or do not believe in.
There’s one quote in the book by Blaise Pascal that especially stuck out to me; “We desire truth and find within ourselves only uncertainty”.
As humans, we all want truth and certainty. We all want to be sure of things – but we find it impossible to find that truth and certainty within ourselves.
There is only One who can give us meaning, understanding, hope, truth and certainty – and that’s Jesus.
This book will challenge you to rethink how you view everyone – especially atheists and those who seriously question our faith.
It addresses the question that we all quietly and ashamedly ask to ourselves, regardless of where we stand on religion; What If I’m Wrong? Jesus or Nothing considers both sides of the fence and gives you a better understanding of your own faith – whilst also equipping you with the tools needed to point others towards the right path when they come to the intersection of Jesus or Nothing.
Dan Dewitt is a theologian, however, this book is written without arrogance or judgement which was a huge breath of fresh air. He’s real, honest and raw and has pieced together a book that you’ll want to recommend to everyone. It’s a book that makes you think – and a book that also makes you act as you begin to look at the world around you in a whole new light.
Humans are always going to be searching for the meaning of life – because that gives us the meaning of everything. We are always going to come to the intersection of Jesus or Nothing and it’s important that we make an informed decision – because it’s a choice we make that has eternal implications.
SIL Recommended? Definitely! I especially recommend this book to all of my Christian brothers and sisters - but this is a book I think everyone should read, regardless of where they stand on religion.
Where Can I Buy It?
But tell me, what's the best book you've read lately?