Humble Orthodoxy: Holding the Truth High Without Putting People Down
Little Book, Big Concepts
The final chapter of Joshua Harris's last book, "Dug Down Deep", was entitled "Humble Orthodoxy". People loved that particular chapter so much that they expressed their desire that he write an entire book about the concept. Thus, the book "Humble Orthodoxy" was born. Taking the main points from the chapter of the same name and expanding on them, this short book (only 61 pages plus a study guide) is full of necessary and relevant truths that deserve to be discussed and wrestled with.
Since the word "orthodoxy" tends to be misunderstood, Harris starts off with a definition: "The word orthodoxy refers to right thinking about God. It's about teaching and belief based on the established, proven, cherished truths of the faith. These are the truths that don't budge. They are the plumb line that shows us how to think straight in a crooked world" (p. 1-2). He then goes on to define humble orthodoxy as "we must care deeply about truth, and we must also defend and share this truth with compassion and humility" (p. 5). With those two definitions in mind, the reader is then ready to tackle the rest of the book.
Harris points out over and over that truth matters. Doctrine matters. But we need to allow the truth of God's word to shape and influence our lives first and foremost. We need to allow the gospel of grace to impact us so that we can go out and impact others. "...while we shouldn't be mean and spiteful in representing biblical truth, neither should we apologize for believing that God has been clear in his Word. The humility we need in our theology is first and foremost a humility before God" (p. 28-29).
This little book is so relevant for our time. Every believer should read this book, wrestle with the content of it, and allow the Holy Spirit to do a work. The study guide at the back of the book makes this book perfect to go through with a Bible study, book club, or even as an individual. The questions will really help take the material to the next level. Highly recommend this book!
(IÃ¢ÂÂve received this complimentary book from Waterbrook-Multnomah through the Blogging for Books program in exchange for a review. A positive review was not required and the views expressed in my review are strictly my own.)
January 11, 2014
A timeless and timely message!
I highly recommend that you read this book! Joshua Harris focuses on 2 Timothy, while challenging Christians to evaluate not just what they practice, as believers in Christ, but also how they practice it. Harris discusses the crucial balance of upholding God's Word, while not being a jerk in the process. He explains that your attitude really matters, "We must deeply care about truth, and we must also defend and share this truth with compassion and humility" (pg. 5). Recently, my husband and I, have seen an influx of Christians standing in support of issues that the Bible clearly opposes- and this book exhorts us, not to be prideful in confronting these Christians, but also not to compromise truth. "Even when people in our culture are sinning, slandering, and tearing down truth, I have no excuse for ignoring God's commands" (pg. 41). This is a book I plan on rereading numerous times; it is a clear, relevant message that we all need to hear, and then go do. "Don't measure yourself by what you know. Measure yourself by your practice of what you know" (pg. 39). This book can be read in one sitting, but the discussion from it, will continue long after it is finished; evoking change and calling Christians to stand firm, with all gentleness and respect.
July 24, 2013
standing for truth in a God honoring way
Wow. This little book packs a punch. Who of us hasn't experienced that person who just knows his doctrine is right and hits us over the head with it?
Harris argues for a strong commitment to orthodoxy and a strong commitment to be gracious in our words and interactions. Humble orthodoxy.
Ã¢ÂÂWe must care deeply about truth, and we must also defend and share this truth with compassion and humility.Ã¢ÂÂ (5)
I wholeheartedly agree when Harris admits it is hard. He helps us see the difference between contending for the faith and being contentious. He identifies what should be the basis for our passionate pursuit of biblical orthodoxy. (And it is not proving ourselves right!) He also shows the relationship between truth and humility.
This is a hard hitting little book. Have we learned to rebuke like Jesus but failed to learn to love like Jesus? Do you hold to the truth and show love to others?
The text is just 60 pages, followed by a 16 page study guide divided into four studies. This would make a powerful study for a small group.
We are in a time when standing firm for biblical truth is a difficult task. Reading this book will help you do it in a way that will glorify God and impact your neighbor.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
July 23, 2013
Humble Orthodoxy by Joshua Harris intrigued me. When I think of orthodoxy, it isn't a positive picture in my mind. But seeing the word humble with it made me interested in reading this book. Here on page 10 explains it well. "People often think of orthodoxy as lifeless and restrictive - a paint-by-numbers guide that stifles creativity." The good news is that it isn't supposed to be that way.
This is a short book with only 83 pages which includes discussion questions and acknowledgements. You could read it in a day if you were really motivated but I'd recommend that you take your time reading and digesting what you read. It's pact full of information. There are four chapters: Your Attitude Matters, With a Tear in Our Eye, Repentance Starts With Me, and Living For God's Approval.
Orthodoxy "refers to right thinking about God. It's about teaching and belief based on the established, proven, cherished truths of the faith. These are the truths that don't budge. They are the plumb line that shows us how to think straight in a crooked world." (pg.1-2)
Here is an explanation about what is humble orthodoxy. "Christians need to have a strong commitment to sound doctrine. We need to be courageous in our stand for biblical truth. But we also need to be gracious in our words and interaction with other people." (pg.3-4) "...we must care deeply about truth, and we must also defend and share this truth with compassion and humility." (pg.5)
So we need both orthodoxy and humility. We need to be solid in our faith but also show grace, mercy, love, humility when sharing God's truth to people. This is a practical book that will help you find balance with this. Study guide at the end of the chapters would be good for small group discussion. There are some questions, prayer suggestions and action step. It's good to not only read about it but to go out and actually put it into practice.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, through the Blogging for Books program, for my honest review.
June 29, 2013