Book Review: David Platt – Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

David Platt has written a popular book titled Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream.  For me, I am always concerned with what popular preachers and authors are presenting to the masses. Today I will look at this book and draw attention to quotes that illustrate David Platt’s message. The goal being to evaluate with Scripture and determine whether this book is solid or if it should be avoided.

“Jesus apparently wasn’t interested in marketing himself to the masses. His invitations to potential followers were clearly more costly than the crowds were ready to accept, and he seemed to be okay with that. He focused instead on the few who believed him when he said radical things. And through their radical obedience to him, he turned the course of history in a new direction.”

Platt, David (2010-04-17). Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream (p. 2). The Doubleday Religious Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

(Remember, for discipleship to be pleasing to God, one must be a believer first. Discipleship and salvation are not the same thing.)

“We were settling for a Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves.” (p. 7).

(The central message is Christ and ultimately God’s glory.)

“He was simply and boldly making it clear from the start that if you follow him, you abandon everything— your needs, your desires, even your family.” (p. 10).

(Let’s be clear. This is a call to current believers, not a call to salvation.)

“Give up everything you have, carry a cross, and hate your family. This sounds a lot different than “Admit, believe, confess, and pray a prayer after me.” (pp. 10-11).

(Wow, so that is Platt’s idea of a gospel call? Seems to me that he is presenting it that way.  I do agree that “pray a prayer after me” does not save but don’t jump out of that ditch into the discipleship commitment for salvation ditch.)

“Yet the kind of abandonment Jesus asked of the rich young man is at the core of Jesus’ invitation throughout the Gospels. Even his simple call in Matthew 4 to his disciples—“ Follow me”— contained radical implications for their lives. Jesus was calling them to abandon their comforts, all that was familiar to them and natural for them. (p. 11).

(Sure He was but not for salvation… for discipleship.)

“We do have to give up everything we have to follow Jesus.” (p. 12).

(There is much we may have to give up in discipleship.)

“Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German theologian struggling to follow Christ in the midst of Nazi rule, penned one of the great Christian books of the twentieth century. In it he wrote that the first call every Christian experiences is “the call to abandon the attachments of this world.” The theme of the book is summarized in one potent sentence: “When Christ calls a man, he bids him come and die.” 11 Bonhoeffer aptly entitled his book The Cost of Discipleship. (p. 14).

(These are what I call red flag quotes. It is a good sign to me that I am dealing with a person with Reformed leanings at the very least. Bonhoeffer understood little. We come to Christ that we may have life, not just abundant life here but eternal life in heaven. There is no reason to equate coming to Christ (conversion) with the death to self required in discipleship.)

“The price of our nondiscipleship is high for those without Christ. It is high also for the poor of this world.” (p. 15).

(Sure it is. I agree with this statement at face value.)

“Yes, you are abandoning everything you have, but you are also gaining more than you could have in any other way. So with joy— with joy!— you sell it all, you abandon it all. Why? Because you have found something worth losing everything else for. This is the picture of Jesus in the gospel. He is something— someone— worth losing everything for.” (p. 18).

(In the gospel? Receiving the gift of eternal life by faith causes us to abandon everything?? Or discipleship once we are saved means we are willing to abandon all? I will go with the latter view as it is consistent with scripture.)

“We need to return with urgency to a biblical gospel, because the cost of not doing so is great for our lives, our families, our churches, and the world around us.” (p. 19).

(Amen, only I would say this same statement with a different meaning in mind.  It is time to get rid of this discipleship for salvation gospel and return to a more Biblical view. By grace through faith.)

“First, from the outset you need to commit to believe whatever Jesus says. As a Christian, it would be a grave mistake to come to Jesus and say, “Let me hear what you have to say, and then I’ll decide whether or not I like it.”(p. 20).

(For discipleship, yes you do, but not for salvation. For salvation we must believe the gospel.)

“The gospel does not prompt you to mere reflection; the gospel requires a response.”(pp. 20-22).

(The only response can be faith… otherwise there is no salvation. If the response is, I’ll try hard, I’ll follow and learn, I’ll do good works, I’ll turn from sins, I I I… then there is no reception of the gospel by faith and no salvation. We need to have the lost see that they can’t work their way to heaven. We have no merit to offer. (Tit 3:5) Platt says this in places but denies it in practice whenever he adds commitment to discipleship to the gospel.)

“Fundamentally, the gospel is the revelation of who God is, who we are, and how we can be reconciled to him.”(p. 28).

(Yes, but so far that is clear as mud if all I had to go on was your book. Try I Cor 15:1-4, Isa. 53:5, Jn 3:16, Acts 10:39-41, Rom 4:25, I Pet 2:24, 3:18)

“You might ask, “What happened to ‘God hates the sin and loves the sinner’?” Well, the Bible happened to it. One psalmist said to God, “The arrogant cannot stand in your presence; you hate all who do wrong.” 3 Fourteen times in the first fifty psalms we see similar descriptions of God’s hatred toward sinners, his wrath toward liars, and so on.”(p.29).

(How about some balance here. John 3:16. For God so LOVED the world means just that – all people including unbelievers – not just the elect. I think Platt is underselling God’s love here. What about Rom 5:8 or 1Jn 4:10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation concerning our sins. 1Jn 4:11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.)

“The professor would then look at his students and remind them of a core truth in the gospel: people are spiritually dead, just as those corpses in the cemetery were physically dead, and only words from God can bring them to spiritual life. This is the reality about humanity. We are each born with an evil, God-hating heart.”(p. 30).

(We are born again when we believe the gospel trusting Christ alone for salvation. We do not need to be regenerated before we can believe or be granted a special gift of faith to then believe.)

“No one who is morally evil can choose good, no man who is a slave can set himself free, no woman who is blind can give herself sight, no one who is an object of wrath can appease that wrath, and no person who is dead can cause himself to come to life.”(p. 31).

(No, but the problem here is that a Calvinist will say that God has to make us believe.  However, the gospel is the power unto salvation to all who believe.

Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.
Rom 1:17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”

The gospel is to be presented first then we decide if we will believe it or reject. The Holy Spirit will reveal our need and bear witness to the truth but will not force us to decide one way or another.)

“Meanwhile, the biblical gospel says, “You are an enemy of God, dead in your sin, and in your present state of rebellion, you are not even able to see that you need life, much less to cause yourself to come to life. Therefore, you are radically dependent on God to do something in your life that you could never do.”(p. 32).

(What God did was provide a Savior in the person of Jesus Christ. We believe on Him to be saved. It is not so much about doing something in our lives.)

“He shows us that there is absolutely nothing we can do to come to him. We can’t manufacture salvation. We can’t program it. We can’t produce it. We can’t even initiate it. God has to open our eyes, set us free, overcome our evil, and appease his wrath. He has to come to us.”(p. 32).

(No. God initiates but we have to respond in faith. Rom 5:8, Eph 2:8-9, Acts 16:31)

“Do we really think that the false judgment of men heaped upon Christ would pay the debt for all of humankind’s sin? Do we really think that a crown of thorns and whips and nails and a wooden cross and all the other facets of the crucifixion that we glamorize are powerful enough to save us?” (p. 34).

(This is one of the worse parts of this book. Seems like some real error to me.  Christ’s death, including the important shedding of blood, paid the penalty. (Heb 9:22) Platt seems to gloss over this and say that the penalty was really only paid because of God’s wrath on Him…?)

“So how do we respond to this gospel? Suddenly contemporary Christianity sales pitches don’t seem adequate anymore. Ask Jesus to come into your heart. Invite Jesus to come into your life. Pray this prayer, sign this card, walk down this aisle, and accept Jesus as your personal Savior.(pp. 36-37).

(Ask Jesus into your heart – yes that is wrong. Same for inviting Jesus into your life, praying this prayer etc. However, accept Jesus as your personal Savior is believing the gospel. Is it not!? Or does Platt not like this because it leaves out commitments to discipleship? In other words, Platt wants to add something to the gospel.)

“That is why none of these man-made catch phrases are in the Bible. You will not find a verse in Scripture where people are told to “bow your heads, close your eyes, and repeat after me.” You will not find a place where a superstitious sinner’s prayer is even mentioned.”(p. 37)

(Platt rants on his idea of a sinner’s prayer but this is a misnomer. Salvation requires faith. Just simple faith. Not the bloated, all inclusive, MacArthur style faith that takes on the meaning of everything like turning from sins, discipleship, obedient works etc)

“I invite you to consider with me a proper response to this gospel. Surely more than praying a prayer is involved. Surely more than religious attendance is warranted. Surely this gospel evokes unconditional surrender of all that we are and all that we have to all that he is.”(p. 37).

(This is sad. Platt goes from false notions to a false notion of his own.  Salvation is not an unconditoinal surrender. It is faith in Jesus Christ alone to save. Discipleship is unconditional surrender. Does anyone see the problem with mixing the two!?)

“You and I desperately need to consider whether we have ever truly, authentically trusted in Christ for our salvation.”(p. 37).

(Let me guess. Platt is insinuating that for faith to be real there must be commitment to discipleship? The test of authentic faith is not the faith itself but the object. Faith is merely the conduit. We can believe with our whole heart that our faith in Christ plus works gets us to heaven but still be wrong because we’ve added to the object.)

“The danger of spiritual deception is real. As a pastor, I shudder at the thought and lie awake at night when I consider the possibility that scores of people who sit before me on a Sunday morning might think they are saved when they are not. Scores of people who have positioned their lives on a religious road that makes grandiose promises at minimal cost. We have been told all that is required is a one-time decision, maybe even mere intellectual assent to Jesus, but after that we need not worry about his commands, his standards, or his glory. We have a ticket to heaven, and we can live however we want on earth. Our sin will be tolerated along the way.”(p. 38).

(There are problems here mixed in with truth.  Spiritual deception is real – it even comes from Lordship salvationists. Imagine that.

Me too, I shudder and think how many have been deceived by Catholicism, Arminianism, Calvinism, whatever other ism you want to throw out there that adds works to the gospel.)

“Here the gospel demands and enables us to turn from our sin, to take up our cross, to die to ourselves, and to follow Jesus. These are the terms and phrases we see in the Bible. And salvation now consists of a deep wrestling in our souls with the sinfulness of our hearts, the depth of our depravity, and the desperation of our need for his grace. Jesus is no longer one to be accepted or invited in but one who is infinitely worthy of our immediate and total surrender.”(pp. 38-39).

(False. Turn from our sins – no, believe on Christ. Take up our cross – no, believe on Christ. Die to self – no, believe on Christ. Follow Jesus – no, believe on Christ. Believe on Christ alone to save you based upon His merit. Our working accomplishes nothing. Deep wrestling – no. Yes we do desperately need Jesus. I just mentioned that repeatedly. So I am not to accept His salvation by faith  but I need to totally surrender?? Hmm. No. I will do as the Bible says: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved. Joh 1:12  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: -Act 4:12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.)

“Indeed, “it is by grace you [are] saved, through faith— and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.” 10 We are saved from our sins by a free gift of grace, something that only God can do in us and that we cannot manufacture ourselves. But that gift of grace involves the gift of a new heart. New desires. New longings. For the first time, we want God. We see our need for him, and we love him. We seek after him, and we find him, and we discover that he is indeed the great reward of our salvation.”(p. 39).

(No, the gift is salvation.  Grace is displayed to us through the provision of Christ. We receive it through faith. It is not a matter of manufacturing anything. Christ did the work. God creates all men with ability to believe and decide, to think, to reason. What He has also provided is the Savior upon whom we can believe.)

“The gospel beckons us to die to ourselves and to believe in God and to trust in his power.”(p. 46).

(No, dying to self is not part of it. We do need to believe trusting in Christ fully as our personal Savior.)

“The dangerous assumption we unknowingly accept in the American dream is that our greatest asset is our own ability.”(p. 46).

(Sure, but this works against the LS proponent who presumes that He can merit salvation by adding in his own commitment to discipleship or his turning from sins, or his dying to self.)

“A tragedy strikes you or someone close to you, and you are hurting. So you go to God in prayer, and you ask him to comfort you. Do you realize what God does? He doesn’t give you comfort. Instead he gives you the Holy Spirit, who is called the Comforter. 11 The Holy Spirit literally comes to dwell in you and puts the very comfort of Christ inside you as you walk through you.”(p. 57).

(What?? No, actually the Holy Spirit is already indwelling believers. And yes, He does comfort us. After all, He is the COMFORTER… John 14:26  But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

The Holy Spirit also helps us remember scripture to help us through times of need and we get comfort from the truth of God’s Word especially as it is applied.

1Co 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?)

(So far Platt has gotten the gospel wrong, given some weird statements about the atonement, and mangled the concept of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit… hmm. Who still thinks this is a great book?)

Platt speaking of life and death decisions: “God sends the Helper, who will live in you and not only tell you what decision to make but also enable you to make that decision.”(p. 58).

(Here Platt misunderstands the will of God and the Holy Spirit’s role. The Spirit reveals the correct decision through the Word and helps us apply God’s wisdom. He doesn’t tell us to do something specifically that is not in God’s Word and we already have the ability to decide but sometimes we need the Spirit’s help to carry through with our decision – through reassuring us through the Word.)

“Would you… would you just come down, live in me, and walk through this for me?” Isn’t it pushing the envelope to ask the God of the universe to come down and take residence in you and me?” (p. 58).

(Platt is just not understanding something here.)

“A majority of individuals supposedly saved from eternal damnation by the gospel are now sitting back and making excuses for not sharing that gospel with the rest of the world.”(p. 75).

(How much gospel spreading does one have to do to show they are saved?  Platt knows and admits that there is no legalistic way to define these things.  Also, using the LS logic, wouldn’t those who go about spreading a false gospel be under suspicion of being usaved??  Hmm – what is adding discipleship to the gospel … works? Sounds like works salvation.)

“The means of our salvation is faith in Christ alone, and the basis of our salvation is the work of Christ alone.”(p. 109).

(Yes, I am glad that he is agreeing with me. Oh wait… that is just surface level agreement because we have different definitions of faith in relation to salvation…)

“Yet, while caring for the poor is not the basis of our salvation, this does not mean that our use of wealth is totally disconnected from our salvation. Indeed, caring for the poor (among other things) is evidence of our salvation. The faith in Christ that saves us from our sins involves an internal transformation that has external implications. According to Jesus, you can tell someone is a follower of Christ by the fruit of his or her life, and the writers of the New Testament show us that the fruit of faith in Christ involves material concern for the poor. 3 Caring for the poor is one natural overflow and a necessary evidence of the presence of Christ in our hearts. If there is no sign of caring for the poor in our lives, then there is reason to at least question whether Christ is in our hearts. 4(p. 110).

(No. Caring for the poor is not necessarily evidence of salvation.  I prefer looking at it this way… believing a works oriented gospel is a reason to question if you really believed the true gospel in the first place. How is that for starters?  A person could be very charitable but be as lost as them come. The way to know is to see who they are trusting in. Is it Christ alone for salvation… or something else..)

“But when we look at 1 Corinthians 6: 9– 10 and it says, “Neither the sexually immoral… nor adulterers… will inherit the kingdom of God,” we would certainly question whether this man is really a child of God. It is not that he needs to stop his sexual immorality to be saved. That would mean he would need to earn his salvation. No, he needs to trust in Christ, which will result in a changed heart with a desire to obey Christ in this area of his life. (p. 111).

(Here Platt displays some misunderstanding of the concept of justification. See, even though believers can still do these sins, they are not sinners in God’s sight as they have been declared not guilty in Christ because Christ is not guilty and His righteousness is now applied to us.  Trusting in Christ gives us the new man but does not eradicate the old. This is key when dealing with LS proponents – especially the “one nature” advocates. Fruit inspection really only works if there is an either/or choice. (Old man only or new man only.) Believers however have both the old and new nature so when doing this supposed fruit inspection all you are going to see is a mix as people go back and forth from walking in the flesh and Spirit. Not even the most mature Christians always walk in the Spirit perpetually without sin. It is not possible in this life. Though the new man itself does not sin. Thankfully the old man will be gone once we reach heaven and receive our glorified bodies.)

“More pointedly, if our lives do not reflect radical compassion for the poor, there is reason to wonder if Christ is really in us at all.” (p. 111).

(No, this is LS fear and bondage.  It is a continually poisonous introspection that can kill joy and grace and bind us up in knots causing us to wonder if we are good enough to feel assured of our salvation. Many reading this will understand right away what I am talking about.)

Regardless of what we say or sing or study on Sunday morning, rich people who neglect the poor are not the people of God. 11(p. 115).

(Oh wait, Platt has found a way to quantify this.. or did he?)

“Jesus was clearly exposing this man’s allegiance to his possessions. Following Jesus would involve total trust in him, an abandonment of everything the man owned. Fundamentally, the rich man needed a new heart, one that was radically transformed by the gospel. 19″(p. 119).

(No, this is a sad LS statement really.  This is a clear indication that Platt is twisting something.)

(Platt quotes Calvin – another red flag.)

“But even more than that, the way we use our money is an indicator of our eternal destination. The mark of Christ followers is that their hearts are in heaven and their treasures are spent there.(p. 138).

(I wish this were true but believers don’t always spend their money wisely. They have to be told to do so and learn to do so. Failure doesn’t mean they are not saved but just that there is more maturing to be done. This goes for any area of obedience.)

“More than anything, I don’t want to be the rich young man. And I don’t want to ignore the fact that the lure toward becoming him is always stronger than I would like to admit.”(p. 137).

(So you are lured to become an unsaved person? Surely you meant this another way.)

“Jesus was uncovering a blind spot in his life, and he didn’t want to see it. He didn’t want to see the extent of his sin, the depth of his bondage to his possessions, or the gravity of the need among the poor.(p. 138).

(Confusing, didn’t Platt also say God was working on this same blind spot with him? Now, after salvation….)

“The way we use our money is a barometer of our present spiritual condition. Our neglect of the poor illustrates much about where our hearts lie. But even more than that, the way we use our money is an indicator of our eternal destination.” (p. 138)

(No, who we trust for salvation is the indicator.)

“But if they will not go to heaven because they have never heard of Christ, then there is indescribable urgency for all of us to go to them.”(p. 143).

(Yes, we should share the gospel with urgency but let us above all first make sure our gospel is the RIGHT one. Otherwise is DOES NO GOOD. Not only that but it is accursed. Gal 1:9  As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. )

“Those of us who have heard about Jesus have had the opportunity to receive or reject the gospel, and we are responsible for our decision. But regardless of our relative knowledge of the gospel, based on the second truth we’ve already explored, all people stand condemned fundamentally for rejecting God. 11″(pp. 149-150).

(Yes, basically true.  So long as we are clear on the content of the gospel but Platt is not as he has added to it.)

“This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe.” 12 Finally, the good news! Christ died on the cross and rose from the grave, and through him we can be righteous before God and assured of eternal life. God has made a way of salvation for the lost.”(p. 150).

(I agree. This book would have been better if this was all that was in it. At least then it would have been Biblical throughout.)

“The thrust of the New Testament is that Christ has indeed come and that people must believe in his person and work on the cross for their salvation (Romans 10: 9– 10).(p. 153).

(This is what I have been trying to say amid all of the LS statements.)

“We think, If it’s dangerous, God must not be in it. If it’s risky, if it’s unsafe, if it’s costly, it must not be God’s will. But what if these factors are actually the criteria by which we determine something is God’s will? What if we began to look at the design of God as the most dangerous option before us? What if the center of God’s will is in reality the most unsafe place for us to be?”(pp. 164-165).

(There is no such thing as the center of God’s will. I see what Platt is saying here but it also can quickly descend into foolishness. We as believers should be wise using the Biblical wisdom to help us make the best decisions regardless of danger or safety.)

“From the story of Job to Paul’s description of Satan’s attack in his life in 2 Corinthians 12, we see how Satan not only acts within the sovereign permission of God but also ends up accomplishing the sovereign purposes of God. Indeed, this is what the Cross is all about. Satan’s strategy to defeat the Son of God only served to provide salvation for sinners.”(p. 173).

(I am amazed by this. Was the cross Satan’s strategy or God’s plan?  It was God’s. Satan tried to tempt Christ to get Him to sin. Satan did not want Christ to be able to be the Savior. What verse says that Satan wanted Christ to go to the cross as an all sufficient Savior?)

“I dare you to test the claims contained in the gospel, maybe in a way you have never done before. I invite you to see if radical obedience to the commands of Christ is more meaningful, more fulfilling, and more gratifying than the American dream.”(p. 184).

(This doesn’t make any sense unless you have changed the gospel to include radical commands.)

(David Brainerd – Calvinist, Jim Elliot – Calvinist, William Carey – Calvinist…are all mentioned by Platt but did these guys have free grace gospels or reformed style gospels? There is a reason why Platt echos many of their previous sentiments.)

“You and I stand on the porch of eternity. Both of us will soon stand before God to give an account for our stewardship of the time, the resources, the gifts, and ultimately the gospel he has entrusted to us.”(p. 216).

(Yes, we all will. The thing is how many of our want to give account for spreading a false message when we had opportunity to know better?)

David Platt’s book contained some good motivation on the surface for certain aspects of reaching the lost. However the message that he is reaching them with is not the clear gospel. It is kind of like reaching out to a thirsty person with a glass of hot sand. It is like a mirage: looks and sounds like the gospel but is works.)

Let see if his church’s doctrinal statement clarifies his position. Maybe I am reading to much into his book…?

church at Brook Hills

From Brook Hills:

“Biblical truth:We are reconciled to God only through faith in Jesus. There is nothing we can do to become right with God.

Biblical response:Faith that leads to salvation involves turning from sin and self-sufficiency. We turn to Jesus and trust in Him as Lord, confess Him as Lord and Savior.”

(Ok, this is the error we say displayed in Platt’s book. It is the error of adding things to faith.)

“Repentance is a genuine turning from sin toward God. Faith is the confession of Jesus Christ and commitment of the entire personality to Him as Lord and Savior.”

(Also false.  Repentance is a change of mind. Faith is trusting Jesus Christ alone to save based on the gospel. There is no reason to add extra things to it.)

“The Kingdom of God includes both His general sovereignty over the universe and His particular kingship over men who willfully acknowledge Him as King. Particularly the Kingdom is the realm of salvation into which men enter by trustful, childlike commitment to Jesus Christ. Christians ought to pray and to labor that the Kingdom may come and God’s will be done on earth. The full consummation of the Kingdom awaits the return of Jesus Christ and the end of this age.”

(They enter this kingdom by childlike commitment?? Does Platt even understand the age of grace?  We are not laboring that the kingdom may come… we are laboring for the harvest looking for the rapture, not to go through the tribulation and for Christ to return to the earth. When He does we will already be with Him. It wouldn’t surprise me to find that Platt is post trib based on this statement. Many reformed types are.)

“All Christians are under obligation to seek to make the will of Christ supreme in our own lives and in human society. Means and methods used for the improvement of society and the establishment of righteousness among men can be truly and permanently helpful only when they are rooted in the regeneration of the individual by the saving grace of God in Jesus Christ.”

(No, this is more social gospel, attempts to usher in the kingdom, and talk about “saving grace”.)

“Biblical truth:We are each created by God, but we are all corrupted by sin. Biblical response:Admit areas of rebellion, be honest with God about sin, and turn from it.”

(No, not for salvation.)

To sum this all up, David Platt has shown errors concerning: the gospel, justification, sanctification, the atonement, God’s plan of redemption, the will of God, marks of “true” believers, social gospel, earthly  kingdom focus, and end times errors. I cannot recommend this book at all.  I would recommend that people mark and avoid Platt and others like him. Not just for the error but for the deception because he uses truth mixed in. This tends to dull the blow of the error but the error is still there and is still dangerous.  Platt isn’t really saying much more new here than what Calvin, Bonhoeffer, Brainerd, Elliot, Spurgeon, Sproul, and others have already said. He is just trying to package it in relation to American culture. Now, American culture does have it problems for Christians to deal with but let’s not use those problems as springboards into a different ditch.

Likewise I would advise people to steer clear of his ministry and really consider if this is truly a good book. Countless eternal destinies are at stake.

Jim F

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8 Responses to Book Review: David Platt – Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream

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  3. jimfloyd12 says:

    Thanks Philip,

    Calvinism has been rising and continues to do so. It is also changing as it goes. New Calvinism is popular now as well.

    You are right in that Calvinism is poison and it is dangerous not just for that but for it’s deceptive quality because many can see it for error at least not right away.

    I can identify with the re-conversion idea. I have exprienced that type of preaching over the years and even remember times where people got saved – again – but either they hadn’t “truly” repented before or because they had sin in their life and because of fruit inspection and manipulative preacher decided to re-commit to make “sure” that they were saved. Now don’t get me wrong, sometimes people need to consider whether or not they are trusting Christ alone to save but there is no reason for LS guilt trips. It just creates confusion and frustration for believers and gives unbelievers nothing substantive.

    It’s radical alright. That’s because man invented it. God must be grieved by it. Hopefully people will begin to see if we continue to get the word out.

  4. philipdean2013 says:

    NICELY done! I read this with a lot of interest. Calvinism is on the rise, and we need to mark and avoid, as the Bible tells us. I like how you patiently answered this, plus identified LS whenever it popped up. I can think of nothing more poisonous than Lordship salvation. Every LS church with 40 members gets 80 converts a year… all those members feeling guilty about a load too heavy to bear, and get truly saved, twice a year.
    No wonder Platt’s message is Radical – you won’t hear it reading your Bible!

  5. jimfloyd12 says:

    Thanks John,

    Yes, I am convinced that these people (those who add works to faith) are of the many that are on the broad path leading to destruction. I think that they are the saddest ones on that path because they had a lot of Bible knowledge and could talk a good game but didn’t quite understand that salvation was a free gift to any who would simply believe.

    Jim F

  6. johninnc says:

    Jim, wow! Amen and Amen!

    I believe there are millions of people who believe the false gospel of Lordship “salvation” with all of their hearts. I think you said it very well:

    “We can believe with our whole heart that our faith in Christ plus works gets us to heaven but still be wrong because we’ve added to the object.”

  7. jimfloyd12 says:

    Hi Jack,

    I am glad that your granddaughter was able to see the error. Not everyone can so easily. Platt is indeed subtle partially because he is likeable and people want to believe him. There is also enough truth with him that people tend to pick around and put up with some of his errors. I just want people to beware. We should be very choosy when it comes to who we listen to. I definitely disagree with the chew the meat spit out the bones philosophy. That doesn’t work well when you are dealing with poison.

    Jim F

  8. Thanks Jim,

    I have a dear granddaughter who visited Platt’s church while she was in nursing school in Birmingham, AL 6-7 years ago. She asked me about him and I explained his error and she saw it right away.

    I will send her the link to your review. Platt is subtle, popular poison.

    In Jesus Christ eternally, Jack

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