Kevin DeYoung is the Senior Pastor at University Reformed Church in East Lansing, Michigan. He is the author of Just Do Something and The Good News We Almost Forgot. He is the co-author of Why We’re Not Emergent and Why We Love the Church, both of which won the Christianity Today Book Award for the church/pastoral ministry category. Read his guest review of Dug Down Deep:
I didn’t know Joshua Harris could draw cartoon monsters. I didn’t know his father, homeschool pioneer, was once a prodigal, guitar playing hippie. I didn’t know Harris was obsessed with Ira Glass and fascinated with the Amish. And I didn’t know that the crazy dream about the filing cabinets and Christ’s forgiveness--a Bunyanesque story we’ve used in worship before--was a real dream, and that Josh really dreamt it.
All this I learned in Harris’s new book, Dug Down Deep: Unearthing What I Believe and Why It Matters. More importantly, I learned (or, perhaps, was reminded) that Harris is a skillful writer with a knack for making complicated truths accessible. This is not a book that breaks new ground in systematic theology; which is no knock on Harris, because he doesn’t intend to break new ground. Instead, he wants to dig deeper into the familiar ground right under our feet.
Many people know Harris as the guy who likes to talk about dating. First, he kissed it goodbye, then he said hello, then he tackled lust, and most recently he told us to stop flirting with the church and become a member already. See a theme? But if you think Harris is just a dating guru, you’ve really missed what he’s become in the past ten years. By God’s grace, Harris is now a humble husband and father, church pastor, sought after conference speaker, and, for the first time in five years, an author with a brand new book. Dug Down Deep still showcases Harris’s ability to spin a good yarn and connect with his audience through personal narrative and vulnerability. But it is also full of solid truth--simple, biblical teaching on God, Jesus, salvation, sanctification, and the Holy Spirit. Dug Down Deep is Harris’s attempt at "humble orthodoxy." It’s a winsome call for Christians to care about theology, understand theology, and not beat people up with theology.
Joshua Harris is a gracious man with a love for truth. Not surprisingly, then, this book is full of truth, delivered with grace. If you or someone you know is tired of swimming in the shallow end of the pool, Harris will be a gentle hand pulling you into deeper waters. If you find theology (and those who love it) distasteful, this book will offer good doctrine with a spoon full of sugar. Teens, young adults and those attracted to a Christianity too cool for convictions will do especially well to read this book.
Joshua Harris has put the cookies near the bottom shelf. And that’s good, because they’re real good cookies, and he serves them up warm and ready to eat. --Kevin DeYoung
Praise for Dug Down Deep
"More than forty years of quadriplegia has underscored to me the matchless value of knowing—really knowing—the doctrines of the Christian faith. Dug Down Deep reveals how biblical doctrine provides a pathway to understanding the heart and mind of God. If you're looking for 'that one book' that will push you farther down the road to faith than you've ever journeyed before, Dug Down Deep is it. I highly recommend it!"
—Joni Eareckson Tada, author; founder and CEO, International Disability Center, Agoura Hills, CA
"In Dug Down Deep my longtime friend Joshua Harris explains the basics of Christian theology in a way all of us can understand. He is a humble man and teaches humbly. If you are tired of hyped promises and want essential truth, this book is for you. As religious fads come and go, the truths in this book will last."
—Donald Miller, author of Blue Like Jazz
"When the apostle Peter says, "Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God…casting all your anxiety on Him," he implies that humble people are fearless. They have the courage to stand up for truth humbly. I love the term "humble orthodoxy." And I love Josh Harris. When they come together (Josh and humble orthodoxy), as they do in this book, you get a humble, helpful, courageous testimony to biblical truth. Thank you, Josh, for following through so well on the conversation in Al Mohler's study."
—John Piper, author of Desiring God; Pastor for Preaching and Vision, Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis
"Via vivid autobiography, Pastor Harris takes readers on a personal journey into the biblical theology that, belatedly, he found he could not manage without. A humbling, compelling, invigorating read."
—J. I. Packer, author of Knowing God
"Josh says that this book is his 'reveling in theology in my own simple way.' Having read it, I can say that it is also a popular defense of the importance of theology and, at the same time, an introduction to it. I enjoyed reading it. And my mind immediately began to go to how I could use this book. Josh has given me a new tool! It is interesting, well written, and excellently illustrated. Josh has succeeded again in giving us a book that is clear, engaging, direct, solid, easy to read, sound, God centered, balanced, humorous—and it even has pictures!"
—Mark Dever, author; Senior Pastor, Capitol Hill Baptist Church, Washington DC
"Dug Down Deep is an incredible book! It's a tangible and incarnate look at theology. I would give it to any young Christian who wants to understand their faith."
—Lecrae, hip-hop artist
"As two young guys who have been deeply blessed and influenced by Josh's books and example, we couldn't be more excited about Dug Down Deep and how God is going to use it to transform a generation. It's a gripping and honest read. In it we learned things about our older brother that we had never, in twenty-one years, been told before! But more importantly, we learned things about our Savior that caused us to fall more deeply in love with him and his Word. Get this book. Read it. And join us on a journey to rediscover what has always been true."
—Alex and Brett Harris, authors of Do Hard Things
"At Boundless, we've enjoyed watching young adults cultivate a fresh desire to go 'further up and further in' as followers of Christ. Few writers fuel that desire quite like Joshua Harris. With humility, humor, and honesty, Dug Down Deep shows the difference that a foundation can make—how vulnerable you can be when it's weak and how transformed you can be when you're willing to go deep."
—Ted Slater, editor, Boundless.org; Focus on the Family