To say controversy has been brewing over Rob Bell’s new book Love Wins is an understatement. I’ve seen countless blogs, opinions and articles and that was before the book was even released this past Tuesday. I’ve wavered back and forth on whether or not to purchase and read it. Some proclaimed the buzz was Bell’s own way of getting people to think, to question what they believe and why. Writers use shock value all the time to get people to actually read what they’ve written…I do that with this very outlet from time to time. Some labeled Bell a universalist. I didn’t think it was fare to “judge the book by it’s cover” and before last night I had never even heard Bell speak nor have I read any of his books. A few people have asked if I’m going to read the latest and I have decided not to read Love Wins for 3 reasons.
I think it can be dangerous when people look to someone’s personal opinion to make a determination for what they believe, especially when it comes to their eternal fate. I do not need any additional supplement to the Truth of God’s Word. I don’t want someone’s personal opinion or interpretation of the Bible to in any way twist or turn or bend in my mind what I know to be Truth. The Truth is right there in black and white, why would I need to add to it? I am going to believe the Almighty God before I believe the feeble ideals of men. Hebrews 4:12 says
“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
I don’t need to read a book that a man wrote when I have The Living Book that God wrote with the Holy Spirit as my guide.
Another reason I have decided not to purchase and read this book is that last I night I watched a few recent interviews of Bell’s explanations and I was deeply disappointed. I had the expectation that when going before a reporter’s firing squad of questions he would have an arsenal of scripture to back up his perceivingly shocking claims regarding the fate of the human race, but that was not the case. He talked more about Christian traditions and who he thinks God is than what it actually says in the Bible. Not once did he quote scripture in the interviews I saw. That disturbed me. In Matthew chapter 4 when Satan tempted Jesus in each and every single response to the devil himself do you know what Jesus did? He simply quoted scripture, every time. I have returned to that passage so many times in recent weeks when I’ve been tempted, frustrated and wrestling in my flesh and I found it ironic that Mr. Bell didn’t once use the Sword of Truth to defend his point of view in those particular instances.
The third reason why I will not read this book is that I don’t agree with the entire premise for it. Love Wins. As in love is winning or love will win. I beg to differ. Love has already won. God has already won. When Jesus was crucified, died for the sins of all mankind on the cross and rose again on the third day, HIS LOVE won. Jesus is alive! No one can EVER change that. The enemy has been defeated…death did not hold him. One of my favorite verses is when Jesus says to His disciples in John 16:33:
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
I cling to that verse almost everyday because I have daily struggles that by myself I cannot overcome. I cling to the real hope I have that I won’t be in this world forever, that I have an eternal home and this, thank you LORD, is not it. You see Jesus, He is MY Savior! And He has already won.
When someone starts to question what I believe, what the Bible clearly says in black and white, and sometimes in red, it’s tempting to get all riled up. It’s easy to take it personally. I don’t think it’s right to label Mr. Bell or accuse him of anything false, especially since I’ve decided not to read the book. To put it simply, the Bible, the Truth, the Word of God is enough for me…bottom line. You know that feeling you get when you know what the right thing to do is? I’ve learned it is not my conscience, it’s actually the Lord speaking to me and I believe He doesn’t want me to read this book…at least not right now. So I guess there are 4 reasons I’m not going to read it. Everyone else can make up their own minds, as for me, I’ll be opening my Bible instead.