When I was in high school, I wore a tee-shirt that asked “When did PRAY become a four-letter word?” Most of my friends didn’t get it then and I don’t know how many would now, but the point, even if missed in delivery, is valid.
What used to be expected and assumed is now questioned, criticized and even mocked. We live in a post-modern world, one that questions everything, but never accepts concrete answers. The problem is that many Christians still approach life as if everyone agrees with us. Or at least that they would if they were simply informed. This is a dangerous place to be. When faced with relativism, circular reasoning and theories presented as facts, many believers choose to question their faith before questioning the opposition. Why? Because they are not equipped.
Four Letter Words, by Dr. Bill Giovannetti, seeks to equip readers (specifically upper high school and college-aged believers) with the logic behind our faith and the prevalent holes in modern thinking. While I don’t agree with everything he wrote, the book offers an excellent starting point for contemporary apologetics.
After providing brief summaries (pros and cons) of a number of different philosophies of thought, Giovannetti allots one chapter for each of ten “four-letter words” that spawn touchy conversations. Some examples:
- How do we know truth is not relative? Are faith and logic mutually opposed?
- Can faith and science exist in harmony?
- If God is so loving, why is there pain in the world? And why doesn’t He stop it?
- Is Hell real? What does that mean and how do we know?
From the Publisher:
Thou shalt tolerate every opinion… except the Christian’s. Today’s postmodern “prime directive” leaves many followers of Jesus tongue-tied. In the global village, isn’t it unreasonable, and even dangerous, to suggest that the Bible has a monopoly on truth?
The church needs a new breed of Christ-follower. We need Christ-followers who are alert to today’s touchy ideas, the truths that fire up more heat than light. We need Christ-followers who can make a clear case for the Bible’s worldview; who are ready to help our friends think through their beliefs; who can recognize inconsistencies and challenge them; and who can do all of this with humility, confidence, humor, and love. For more information visit http://fourletterwords.org.
About the Author:
Dr. Bill Giovannetti is a professor at A.W. Tozer Theological Seminary and the senior pastor of Neighborhood Church of Redding. An experienced speaker and author, Bill informs the mind in ways that touch the heart. He enjoys life with his wife and two kids in northern California. For more information about Bill and his other books, visit http://maxgrace.wordpress.com and http://fourletterwords.org.
Bill is celebrating the new Kindle edition of Four Letter Words (for only $4.99)! He’ll be traveling coast to coast over the next few weeks on this virtual book tour and he’s celebrating by hosting a great giveaway! Click here to find out how you can win two gift certificates to Amazon (in the amount of $50 and $25) and free downloads of his yet-to-be-released title, Recession-Proof: Living a God-Blessed Life in a Messed Up World. Get the whole scoop HERE.
A more personal note:
The points where the author and I disagree are mostly speculative and tone. You who follow this blog regularly know me and many of doctrinal stances. Dr. Giovanetti and I are in agreement on those foundational points, and you can trust his base arguments.
It seems his target audience is upper teens and college-aged readers, but I believe the information shared would be helpful to anyone young in their faith, regardless of actual age. This book is especially suited for those first emerging from the faith “bubble” into the “real” world.