This week we’ve had a young man with us on work experience. One of the things we asked him to do was to read Keep the Faith and write a book review of it. Paul is only in Year 10 at School, but we think he’s done such an excellent job that we want to give it a wider audience. Here’s his review…
“If God is real, then why …?”
“Surely it isn’t reasonable to expect Christians to …?”
“Can we really be certain that …?”
These are the everyday, insidious questions that can gnaw away at Christian belief, compelling us to query the reality of God and his good design for us. In a relativistic, self-oriented culture, his truths can all too easily come to seem a little fanciful. This is where Martin Ayers’ book Keep the Faith provides invaluable support. Rather than dealing directly with events or circumstances that can undermine our faith, Ayers delves into the Bible’s own teachings on the nature of doubt and provides practical advice for Christians assailed by uncertainty.
Ayers specifically encourages Christians concerned by the atheistic ambience of modern society, providing a reminder of how the Fall’s corruption of our reasoning prevents us from objectively scrutinising Christ’s claims. We all have a ‘vested interest’, as it were, in the veracity or otherwise of Christianity, and it is only through God’s grace that any sinners have been able to accept his offer of redemption. Our colleagues, friends and family who reject Jesus’ claims do so not for lack of evidence, but at the inherent urging of their fallen natures. Rather than being discouraged in our faith, Ayers explains how we should see their dismissal of Christ through the lens of the Bible as a consequence of sin. Their unbelief should in no way weaken our confidence in God’s promises.
Ayers then applies this understanding to offer guidance for those struggling with doubt. He shows how all belief systems ultimately rely on faith statements, and encourages Christians to see if the alternatives compare favourably with the Bible’s core teachings. His compassionate, sound advice should assist all believers in combating their doubts and providing ultimate reassurance of the consistency of God’s word.
– Paul Statheos