Thursday, January 07, 2016

Book Review : Paradoxology

I really enjoyed Paradoxology by Krish Kandiah. He takes the approach that Christianity is not simple as it is often portrayed to be. "Just believe" we are told but if we are too afraid to wrestle with the paradoxes of Christianity for fear our faith isn't robust enough to cope with close examination, than our spiritual lives will be very shallow.

Kandiah works his way through the Bible pointing out thirteen paradoxes. He discusses each one using a different Bible character or group of people: Abraham – the God who needs nothing but asks for everything; Moses – the God who is far away and so close; Joshua – the God who is terribly compassionate; Job – the God who is actively inactive; Hosea – the God who is faithful to the unfaithful; Habakkuk – the God who is consistently unpredictable; Jonah – the God who is indiscriminately selective; Esther – the God who speaks silently; Jesus – the God who is divinely human; Judas – the God who determines our free will; the Cross – the God who wins as he loses; the Romans – the God who is effectively ineffective; and the Corinthians – the God who fails to disappoint.

Using this format Kandiah effectively addresses the common problems that many have with the Bible. The problem of Abraham sacrificing his son, the problem of Joshua being told to wipe out the Canaanites, the problem of Job a righteous man who suffered much etc. I found the chapter on Judas particularly perceptive as I had not read Kandiah's viewpoint before and I found it very helpful.

It's Kandiah's firm belief that it is important we study the stories that we have the most difficult with as it is only by doing so that we will have a better understanding of God's character and his ways. The stories that bother us can actually lead us to a deeper relationship with God.

A discerning and insightful book.

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