Thinking Christian

Thinking Christianity for church, home, and community

Think Christianly by Jonathan Morrow

Posted on Jan 23, 2013 by Tom Gilson

Book Review

Think Christianly: Looking at the Intersection of Faith and Culture by Jonathan Morrow

I have an all-too-large “guilt shelf,” which is what I call the list of books I know I should be reading. They’re books that I want to read—that’s why I have them—but I can’t seem to get to all of them as quickly as I would like. Think Christianly has been on that list for several months. The timing when I finally did get to read it was both ironic and I think also God-ordained.

I’m developing a plan and curriculum for a brand-new Life Leadership Institute for emerging leaders to begin this fall at King’s Domain in southwest Ohio. It is to be a nine-month program of intense discipleship for recent college graduates and others of about that age, who will live and work in the local community while being trained and mentored by high-quality Christian leaders and teachers, in the context of a strong community here.

I delivered a structured outline for the year’s curriculum just a day or two before I began to read this book. I didn’t realize I was about to change the plan.

I’ve read a lot of books on faith, culture, and worldview. A lot. I’ve never encountered any that covers the ground as thoroughly in just a few hundred pages as this one does. It is unusually comprehensive, covering everything from the Christ-follower’s basic walk with Christ, to apologetics, to popular culture, to bioethics, and more.

It does it well, too. The book is just under 300 pages long, so obviously it cannot dive into deep waters on every topic it touches on. Still as I read it I felt like I was really swimming, not just splashing around in a wading pool. I have swum as many as one hundred miles in a year–nothing compared to a competitive swimmer, but enough to know the difference between the deep end and the shallow end. This isn’t scary deep-end stuff, but it’s definitely real exercise.

Not only that, but I kept repeatedly thinking, page by page, this is important. This is a crucial perspective. We need this. The world needs this.

Each chapter’s discussion is followed by a leader in that field. No one can specialize in everything, and there’s no implication in this book than anyone should. In their fields, though, the men and women we meet here are ones who not only know that we need this; the world needs this; they are doing something about it. There are excellent models to follow here.

Now, before I settle in on final plans for the Life Leadership Institute I have more work to do, other people to coordinate with, other programs like it to learn from. (I don’t want my boss here thinking I’m making an announcement without him!) But here’s my point: although you are very warmly welcomed to inquire about attending the Institute, and I hope many of you do, most of you won’t be able to move here for a year and take part in it. Now, suppose you wanted to dig into some serious worldview study at your church or on your own, and you were looking for a comprehensive framework to build it around. This would be a very good choice. Maybe the best.

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2 Responses to “ Think Christianly by Jonathan Morrow ”

  1. Anna says:

    (Ecclesiastes 12:12) As regards anything besides these, my son, take a warning: To the making of many books there is no end, and much devotion [to them] is wearisome to the flesh.

    Why not focus your efforts on reading, understanding and applying GOD’S WORD and not those of men?

  2. Victoria says:

    Anna
    Because we are a community of believers. Christianity is a personal faith, but not an individual faith. We are meant to help each other, to edify, to teach, to correct, to encourage each other in God.
    No one individual knows everything. We are not all of us historians or Greek and Hebrew experts – we depend on each other.

    There are things I never would have known about Biblical truths were it not for the writings of my fellow believers, especially those who are professional scholars in the service of our Lord Jesus Christ

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