A Book Review from Books At a Glance
By Benjamin J. Montoya
R. Albert Mohler Jr.’s new book The Gathering Storm seeks to describe the gathering storm that secularism has brought upon our world, the various specific areas impacted by the storm, and how Christians can respond as they go into this storm. Since I wrote a published summary of this book on our website, I will point our readers there instead of providing another summary here.
One of the strengths of Mohler’s book is his ability to identify and address a very wide array of the ways in which the culture shift towards secularism/neo-paganism has affected our society with a level of insight that few can match. He addresses how secularism seeks to attack our thinking, theology, the family, and much more. The sheer amount of reading and ongoing cultural attentiveness required to even be able to do these things is impressive. This book represents vintage Mohler. He does this sort of thing on a regular basis on his podcasts, blogs, etc. I fully expected to see this given that I earned two degrees from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and heard him speak on a regular basis in chapel. This book is very helpful in this regard. For people who may not be aware of how these issues are affecting the world around us and the church, this book provides an insightful analysis of the ways in which our culture is being changed at a shockingly historically fast pace.
One of the limitations of the book is that Mohler’s focused most of his attention on identifying and addressing the issues he tackled at the expense of offering more nuanced and specific advice for how Christians can respond to the parts of the gathering storm that he covered. For example, when it comes to politics, early on in the book, Mohler explains that getting involved in politics does not mean just getting the right candidate into office, and later in the book he encourages Christians to get involved in politics. Obviously, in the democratic republic that the US has, voting matters, but how can most ordinary Christians get involved in politics in other ways? There could have been more concrete advice given here.
A huge part of my perspective on this limitation of Mohler’s book comes from having recently summarized several political/cultural books on our website that come from a wide variety of perspectives. When I compare the level of specificity that most of these books offer, I found Mohler’s book wanting in this area. I get that that may not have been his intention, and I also understand that sometimes there are other reasons why someone does not want to get into a lot of details in this regard.
Overall, this book is well worthy of serious consideration. Mohler has addressed our historical moment – “the gathering storm” – very well. May Christians read this book and take it seriously as they seek to go into this storm for the sake of the gospel!
Benjamin J. Montoya, PhD
Assistant Editor, Books At a Glance