- Product Review (submitted on February 20, 2012):
I thought this book has promise, because we all need to get away from following Jesus by obeying a bunch of rules and just follow Him out of love. But as I read, I quickly realized that this book was not going to say that. This guy basically goes way too far the other direction and creates his own "Christianity."
Maybe you like this kind of book, but in my opinion, it's a complete waste of time. It's just a big narrative. No scripture, no teaching, it's just an annoying (and I think somewhat fictitious) story. It's full of an amateur comedian's joke attempts, and it seems like he's trying desperately to make you like him rather than to show you some truth he's discovered. That's annoying to me. I don't like it when people waste my time. Tell me what you are trying to say, and then let me chew on it. I think he is embellishing his stories of his "messed up" childhood. I'd like to talk to his parents and "Pastor Nolan" to see what they have to say about this book, and what they are really like. I know these people do exist, but he makes everyone sound like imbeciles while he is the only one in the story with his head screwed on straight.
In the end of the book, he is VERY vague about the final conclusions he has reached. It seems like he has convinced himself that it's okay to not go to church very often, okay not to have relationships with people, okay not to forgive and overlook what you see as their shortcomings, and that God's Word isn't authoritative in our lives. How did he get here? He goes from ranting about his growing up to what he says in the last 5 minutes of the book very abruptly.
From what I gather, he and his wife are now "members" of a community church, but they don't have relationships with people there, they don't read the Bible much because they don't see the words of God as perfect, and they only come to church every once in awhile because they don't think they "fit in". I wonder what the New Testament Christians-the ones that saw Jesus die- would think about that kind of person. I don't think they were concerned about "fitting in." Basically, I think this guy is anti-authority, including coming from the Bible, but he still has a need to be liked by everybody, so he goes to church to satisfy people. And he writes this book to please people who feel a spiritual void in their lives, and instead of cleaning the inside of their cups, they blame the church for their lack of a relationship with God. They'll spend the rest of their lives blaming the church and disconnected from it, fooling themselves into thinking that this is what God wants for them, and that they are ok and that He's pleased with their decision to separate from His body. And all the while they'll remain spiritually disconnected from the Father, too. Then, at the judgement, not surprisingly, he'll tell them, "I never knew you." And then eternity will begin.
At the end of the book Turner says he's passionate about Jesus, but I don't believe it. You cannot be passionate about Jesus and disconnected from His word and His people at the same time.
I just wasted my time listening to this. At least I did it on my commute, so that would have been semi-wasted time anyway. Don't waste yours.