IN THE FACE OF GOD: The Dangers and Delights of Spiritual Intimacy by Michael Horton focuses on the modern Church and preaching as a feel-good, not as the truth. This book review was written by Hank Griffith of South Suburban Evangelical Free Church in Apple Valley, Minnesota. This book is good for those who are interested in the modern Church and the opinion of Michael Horton on the topic of spiritual intimacy.
The book I’m reviewing today, written by well-known Reformed theologian and prolific author Michael Horton, will make you think. It may challenge some of your assumptions. However, being challenged is a good thing, isn’t it? Even if we don’t agree, we need to remain humble enough to listen to the viewpoint of others in the Body of Christ, especially those who, like Horton, are serious students of the Word of God.
The back cover does a better job than I could in summarizing this 231-page book:
“In this challenge to ‘Christianity Lite’ Michael Horton insists that instant spiritual gratification offered by much modern preaching is more like ancient Gnosticism than biblical faith. Pop culture assumes that a feel-good faith brings us into a chummy relationship with God.”
Rather than just criticizing this trend, “The author paints a compelling picture of the delights of true spiritual intimacy: we learn the true meaning of grace by facing the true depths of our sin. We delight in God’s Word, which is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path. We are loyal to His Church, the Body of Christ, and its ordinances.”
“Such objective means of intimacy with God, Horton asserts, are in danger of being lost by subjective, gnostic elements in evangelical Christianity. He calls for a return to the teachings of the apostle Paul and the reflections of his teaching in Luther and Calvin as correctives to the unbiblical mystical spirituality of our day.”