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Gagging of God, The Paperback – February 18, 2002

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

D.A. Carson is professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Douglas J. Moo is associate professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical School. Leon Morris, retired, was principal of Ridley College, Melbourne, and served as visiting professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical School --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Back Cover

The Gold Medallion Award-winning book that presents a persuasive case for Christ as the only way to God

Is Jesus the only way to God? This clear, critically-acclaimed, scholarly response to that question affirms the deep need for the Gospel’s exclusive message in today’s increasingly pluralistic global community. The Gagging of God offers an in-depth look at the big picture, shows how the many ramifications of pluralism are all parts of a whole, and then provides a systematic Christian response.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan; Revised edition (February 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031024286X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310242864
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #821,259 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

D. A. Carson (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is research professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois. He is the author or coauthor of over 45 books, including the Gold Medallion Award-winning book The Gagging of God and An Introduction to the New Testament, and is general editor of Telling the Truth: Evangelizing Postmoderns and Worship by the Book. He has served as a pastor and is an active guest lecturer in church and academic settings around the world.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 41 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 31, 1997
Format: Hardcover
How can biblical Christianity speak about the reality, person, nature and will of God to a pluralistic society? Does Christianity have any hope of authoritatively addressing a society in which postmodern thought has cast doubt not only on the truth of the claims of Christianity, but also on the possibility of the existence of such a thing as objective, knowable truth? This is the challenge taken up by D.A. Carson in The Gagging of God; Christianity Confronts Pluralism.

Our world and more immediately the United States, contains a vast diversity of races, values, heritages, languages, cultures, and religions. D.A. Carson has observed not only this fact in The Gagging of God, but also that the people of the United States are viewing this diversity with increasing favorability. Carson, as an evangelical Christian, has no quarrel with either of these phenomenon, which he terms "empirical pluralism" - the fact that there is considerable diversity within our culture, and "cherished pluralism" - the growing belief among Americans that this diversity is good and positive. His quarrel is with what he terms philosophical or hemeneutical pluralism: "...the notion that a particular ideological or religious claim is intrinsically superior to another is necessarily wrong" (19). This is the stripe of pluralism that gags God, because it robs him of the ability to make truth claims about himself or anything else. Likewise, it robs Christians of the ability to make similar truth claims, regardless of their basis, because to do so would be to elevate their beliefs to a "true" status, superior to the claims of others, thereby violating philosophical pluralism.
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32 of 37 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Pierce on November 15, 2002
Format: Paperback
An earlier reviewer claims that Carson should change the so-called offensive title of this book. It is intended to offend, but the reviewer who said this doesn't seem to have bothered to read the preface to know what the title really is getting at.
The title has a two-fold meaning. On one level, it is talking about how contemporary pluralistic thinking gags God. If truth is impossible to communicate, how can God speak? I'm not sure this should be offensive to a postmodernist. Their whole goal is to deconstruct religious thinking so God can't be said to speak to us anymore.
However, the truly offensive aspect of the title is the more profound meaning. Much of what Carson does in this book is to show how Christians have been gagging God by reacting to pluralism in wholly inappropriate and unbiblical ways. Someone who has digested his analysis in a self-evaluating way cannot miss that. The title is supposed to be offensive to Christians because Christians are the people who should know better. Because of that, the title is not quite a very clever pun but something in that area.
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35 of 43 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 2, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Carson is one of evangelicalism's premier NT scholars and commentary writers, but his effort here leaves me feeling ambivalent. Carson wants the reader (presumedly a very patient evangelical laymen) to wade through 600 pages of his various musings on topics which concern him all lumped under the rubric of pluralism (much of the book is drawn from prior articles and its patchwork structure shows through). Much is helpful, and Carson is always insightful and careful in his analysis. However, his prose not too clean, and he tries to interact with far too much material for just one book (it could have been 3 or 4 books!). Carson's basic premise is that Christians must resist pluralism by emphasizing biblical theology (the story of the authoritative Scripture from creation to consummation). He covers so much ground, often in some depth, that one is bogged down by many needless tangents (and footnotes). Much of the detail is not necessary for his purpose. In fact, most of the material in part 2 of the book could be summarized in a single 50 pages chapter, rather than rambling on for nearly 300 pages! If this book is ever revised, I suggest that it be reduced at least by 1/2, that his prose be cleaned up, and that he change the horrible title. It is hardly helpful to begin dialogue with a non-Christian pluralist by accusing them of gagging God! Where exactly does he think the conversation will go from there?
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Jacques Schoeman on November 3, 2007
Format: Paperback
Carson brilliantly analyses the 'isms' of modernism through post-modernism. In the explosion of faulty worldviews, Carson crosses swords with all who have blurred the lines of vital Christianity as the task of the church, and all those who dare blemish the bride of Christ with spots and wrinkles.

A praiseworthy and timely defense against the academia of modernism, relativism, humanism, consumerism, liberalism, feminism and post-modernism.

'God creates snowflakes, we produce ice cubes.' p 97

'In the 3rd century, Origen moved in this direction (universalism), though on this and many other points the Church departed from him.' p 142

'The Enlightenment tried to make man the measure of everything; Rationalism elevated human reason to godlike status.' p 134

'Having elevated self to the place where God is no longer needed, self now proclaims that language is inadequate to talk about objective reality, God included. Having damned interpretation for being manipulative, God, if He were to speak, becomes the arch manipulator. The gagging of God is complete.' p 134

'...where He alone ought to be acknowledged as both the source and the end of all His creatures, not least those made in His image, our deep self-centeredness is rebellion - it is sin.' p 133
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