Official Review: Bad Faith. by Tom Drake-Brockman

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Poppy Drear
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Official Review: Bad Faith. by Tom Drake-Brockman

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[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Bad Faith." by Tom Drake-Brockman.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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Bad Faith by Tom Drake-Brockman is a somewhat ambitious novel that attempts to make sense of the chasm between humanist Christianity, or Christianity through works, and faith-based Christianity. It does this by examining the teachings of Jesus and their various interpretations, ultimately arriving at the conclusion that Jesus wanted people to emulate God by doing good in the world, rather than merely believing that his sacrifice cleansed them of sin. In arguing this point, he also discusses topics like how religious institutions have treated forgiveness, the Bible's creation story, and how our modern world can be revitalized by Christian humanism.

While it uses mostly colloquial language and is fairly easy to understand, this is certainly an academic book. It's quite thought-provoking, so if you're looking for a simple, light read, you won't find it here. The book is mostly a surface-level introduction to Christian humanism, so while it is by no means exhaustive, there are many references for anyone looking to dig deeper into the topics discussed. A few individual sentences can be confusing, but the author's overall ideas and arguments are organized quite neatly, and the chapters progress logically as the book continues.

With that said, the text certainly wasn't dry. It's clear the author is quite passionate about this subject, and combined with his expertise in the field, this passion makes it easy to become invested in the concepts he describes. I'm usually not a fan of history, but I found the way he described Jesus's lifetime and teachings fascinating and easy to relate to. When writing any nonfiction book, getting readers to care about the subject as much as you do is both paramount and rather tricky, so I was quite impressed with the author's abilities in this area.

I only found one major flaw: the author is somewhat misguided about Christianity's role in improving the world. For example, he advocates against easier divorce procedures by citing statistics about children's reduced performance in single-parent families, conflating correlation with causation. However, this is a very small part of the book, and it's easy to ignore. There are also some grammatical errors, but they aren't particularly distracting, and I was provided with an editor's copy, so it's likely many of these issues have been smoothed out.

Overall, I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. It's a great read for people interested in religious history, and if you're somewhat religious but dissatisfied with the complacency of many Christian people, I highly recommend it. However, I'd caution that it does contain some rather unorthodox interpretations of various parts of the Bible, so you'll need to keep an open mind to fully appreciate this book.

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Dee_218
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Post by Dee_218 »

You have written this review in such an agreeable manner. I would definitely enjoy this book although I am just an audience who is seeking for better, probable knowledge into christianity. I also have a problem with tolerating complacent christians and the vast confusion that brings into society
Miller56
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Post by Miller56 »

Thanks for the review. I find books on Christianity very opinion oriented, since we all interpret what we hear in church or read differently. Since it is a thought provoking book, I think I will add it to my reading list.
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AntonelaMaria
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Post by AntonelaMaria »

A thought-provoking book about religion sounds like a book I could read. But I would have to be in a mood for it. Great review.
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Nyambura Githui
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Post by Nyambura Githui »

Interesting review. I'm curious to know more about Drake's thoughts about Christianity.
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kandscreeley
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Post by kandscreeley »

I'm not sure about unorthodox interpretations of the Bible. However, I'm still curious about what the author has to say. It does sound like a book you gave to think while reading, and I'm not sure I can handle that at the moment. Thanks, though!
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Cinnamom
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Post by Cinnamom »

You wrote an interesting review. Christian humanism is rather paradoxical though. Humanism is traditionally anti-theism or without God. God, on the other hand, is the central point of Christianity. I am curious how the author connects the two as one.
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Wyland
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Post by Wyland »

It will be good to lean something on Christian Humanism as is applied by the author. Though I don't know why he distinguishes it from faith based Christianity. thanks for your wonderful review.
Uncle John
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Post by Uncle John »

A great book on Christianity, we'll read it to get a deeper and better understanding.
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keycrump
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Post by keycrump »

Thanks for the review. I often try to stay away from books on Christianity. This book doesn't seem to try to force you to think their way so, I think I will add it to my reading list.
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Post by Meg98 »

This sounds like an interesting book. I do like the fact that it isn't dry, even though it is an academic book. That can sometimes happen in other reads. Thanks for this great review!
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