holiness reviewed

The Utter Relief of Holiness written by John Eldredge, brought to us by Hodder & Stoughton, is a 3 star read.

What a relief it would be to be set free from all that plagues us — the inner struggle with anger, or contempt… the habitual sins. Is such an experience possible? John Eldredge believes it is. He seeks to  show readers how they can be that free through the healing work of Christ in their lives. It begins, he says, when we discover what the salvation of Jesus Christ means for our own restoration and that holiness is an expression of the healing of our humanity.

Holiness is painted with need, beauty and winsomeness, free of legalism, sanctimonious piety and the negativity of a past era.

There is a freshness, energy and insight about the love of Jesus, freedom and holiness. Eldredge engages with motive while usefully addressing the surprise and way of holiness.  Here we are offered a number of  simple identifiable goals that would make it possible for us to be more ‘whole and holy’. Helpful but far from complete.

This is probably the biggest print mainstream copy of a new release on the market. But that irritation aside, here is a book that explores the beauty of the genuine goodness available to us in Jesus Christ, and guides the reader through the process whereby God fashions us in the pattern of His love. My only theological struggle was not the goal of holiness so much as the lack of focus on Jesus and what is resolved in His finished work. Readers may be relieved albeit partially through this book.