Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Heart of Religion

Authors: Matthew T. Lee, Margaret M. Poloma, and Stephen G. Post
Publisher: Oxford University Press
December 2012
ISBN 978-0-19-993188-0
Genre: Love – Religious Aspects – Christianity \ Religion
Reviewed by: Steve Hilton

Loosely based on the experiences of 5 people, and supported by sociological research from three experienced professionals, The Heart Of Religion lives up to its name.  It provides an excellent history and foundation for the transforming power of religion in our society.  Drawing on an extensive random survey of 1,200 men and women across the United States, Matthew Lee, Margaret Poloma, and Stephen Post here shed new light on how Americans wake up to the reality of divine love and how that transformative experience expresses itself in concrete acts of benevolence.

However, God is not interested in religion – he’s interested in a relationship.  Throughout the book the prevailing interest is in God’s love; not in God himself.  There is a sense that ANYONE can practice and dispense the love of God, regardless of their relationship with him.  God, and any relationship one has with him, plays second fiddle.  In its widest expression, the principles of this book could lead someone to the idea that God is irrelevant – all you need is love.

The dangers of such a message cannot be over-emphasized.  There are millions of souls languishing in hell for all eternity because of such a message.  Religion without a right relationship with the Creator and Sustainer of all that was, is, and ever shall be, can be summed up in one word – idolatry.  And Scripture is clear; “I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.”  Isaiah 42:8

1 star. 301 pages. $29.95.

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