Menu

From the Academic section

Notice: This site is no longer being updated. It will continue to be available as an archive, at least until the end of March 2019. If you rely on it for review links, please adjust them before then.

The project has disseminated reviews and other information about Christian books since the start of the Millennium. We regret that it is no longer possible to sustain it.

Turning to God

Reclaiming Christian Conversion as Unique, Necessary and Supernatural

by David F Wells

Jacket

Paperback
Publisher:Baker Books imprint of Baker Pub. from Lion
Published:May 2012
ISBN:978-0-801-09700-3
Review:
The emphasis of this book on conversion is clearly betrayed by the sub-title. David Wells is unrepentant in the narrowness and exclusive nature of his understanding of Christian conversion. As a priest who experiences conversion on a daily basis and is frequently brought closer to God by the divine working through non-Christians (including those of other faiths) Wells’ book is always challenging, but sometimes offensive.
Wells’ perspective is premised on an understanding of Christianity that is tightly aligned to a Western, capitalist and evangelical world-view rooted in a conservative reading of scripture. I find it hard, for instance, to keep reading a book that describes other faith traditions as the enemy of Christianity.
Yet for all this, Wells has a point that should be heard. The experience of conversion is the exclusive work of God (grace), it is unique (to the experience of the individual believer) and it is culturally contextual. Furthermore, it cannot be separated from the question of discipleship. ‘The test of conversion is a life of convertedness’. Above all, it is not about us, but about God.
All this would be affirmed by a majority of Christians. What a shame then that Wells must frame an otherwise helpful contribution to the missionary task of the church in language that is at times arrogant, presumptuous and negative towards cultures and traditions other than his own. The God I believe in is far bigger than this.

Listen to this review

Reviewer: David Ford   (24/08/12)
Ritchie Christian Media
Candle Books
Gospel for Asia UK
Church House Bookshop
Aslan Christian Books
CLC Christian Bookshops
Scripture Union
Together Magazine
The Third Target - Joel Rosenberg