A Brief Book Summary from Books At a Glance
About the Author
Kevin DeYoung (MDiv, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) is senior pastor at University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan. He blogs at the Gospel Coalition and has authored or coauthored numerous books such as Just Do Something, Why We’re Not Emergent, Why We Love the Church (with Ted Kluck), and Crazy Busy.
Kevin DeYoung seeks to provide an antidote to the church’s struggle regarding the biblical teaching on our own effort in sanctification. Christians herald God’s free grace in the gospel on the one hand, but it is not matched by a zeal to please the Lord and grow in holiness on the other. DeYoung draws together biblical and theological sources and applies them to encourage a healthy practice of growth in grace.
Table of Contents
1. Mind the Gap
2. The Reason for Redemption
3. Piety’s Pattern
4. The Impetus for the Imperatives
5. The Pleasure of God and the Possibility of Godliness
6. Spirit-powered, Gospel-driven, Faith-fueled Effort
7. Be Who You Are
8. Saints and Sexual Immorality
9. Abide and Obey
10. That All May See Your Progress
Mind the Gap
Kevin DeYoung points out the nature of the problem with sanctification or the pursuit of godliness with an analogy. “The hole in our holiness is that we don’t really care much about it.” We think it’s like camping: some people are into it, others aren’t. Many Christians feel like the role of effort in the Christian life is not exactly for them – but hey, maybe it’s for you?
In actual fact, as numerous texts of Scripture attest, the gospel is about God’s glory manifested. What’s more, God’s glory in the gospel is manifested in breaking the power of sin over his people, in devoting them to himself and his things. (1 Peter 1:2; Romans 8:29; Ephesians 1:4; 2 Timothy 1:9; Hebrews 12:10, etc.) There is an “enthusiasm gap” between our zeal for the gospel and our zeal for what Christ has saved us to, namely, holiness. Why don’t we care as much for the second thing as we care about the first?
This book doesn’t seek to prove the existence of the enthusiasm gap or to turn our thinking upside down. Here we assume that J.I. Packer is right in his observation that we leave holiness out of the equation all too often in our preaching and books, in our expectations for leaders, and in our evangelism. Christians who are excited about any number of dozens of things – Christ and culture, creation care, social justice, academic theology, etc. – can keep those interests. This isn’t a call to give it all up for holiness. The message here is simple: “There is a gap between our love for the gospel and our love for godliness. This must change.”….[To continue reading this summary, please see below....]
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