Reviewer: Laura J. Davis
I wasn't sure what to make of Bruxy Cavey's new book (re)union, the Good News of Jesus, for Seekers, Saints and Sinners. I was very sceptical, starting from his explanation of why he has a tattoo. I mean who is this guy? Does he even know what he's talking about?
Yes, yes he does.
He encourages readers to mark up his book. So I did. I underlined I made notes. Sometimes I used exclamation points when I felt he missed the mark. But for the most part, he was spot on about what it means to follow Jesus and what that looks like. Hint - it doesn't include religion.
Was Jesus only rebuking the Jewish leaders of his day when he preached? Or is the message and mission of Jesus a universal rebuke to all religions? As Cavey states, "It seems the message of Jesus changed the world until the world changed the message."
Cavey attempts to present the Gospel message in one word, three words, and thirty words, dividing the book into those categories. He makes the point that "religious" people stick to the Bible above all else and so they become like the religious leaders of Jesus' day, whom Jesus chastised. "You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me. But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life (John 5:39-40)." They read the Bible and believe everything it says, but if they don't read it with Jesus as the centre of it, they miss the point. "Jesus should become the lens through which we see the real meaning of all Scripture." He has a point. Many Christians today seem to zero in on a particular scripture and make it their mantra in life when it has nothing to do with Jesus at all. Who are you following? The Bible? Or Jesus? If Jesus is the Word, then follow Him. Cavey makes that point throughout this book.
It is all about getting to know God and the only way to do that, according to Cavey, is through Jesus who is "God's ultimate explanation of himself." He adds, "What do we see when we look at Jesus? A God who has infinite compassion on sinners and outcasts. A God who rages against religion. A God who calls us his friends."
While much of the book is sound, there were a few things I disagreed with theologically. While he is quick to point out that "religious" people pick and choose their Scriptures to justify their actions, he does the same thing. He tends to ignore the Scriptures that describe hell or the torment that is to come for those who reject Christ as it doesn't "fit" with his concept of a loving and just God. He talks like a universalist with just enough truth to make it seem like he's right. So one must read this book with caution.
Despite that, he is a man who obviously loves his Lord and he presents a thorough examination of what the gospel is all about - Jesus. Just Jesus. It's about His kingdom beginning with us and in us through His Holy Spirit. This book is for seekers and sinners and especially saints who have lost their way in religion and want to find Jesus again.
"Book has been provided courtesy of Menno Media and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."