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Graciousness: Tempering Truth with Love Paperback – January 15, 2018
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From the Back Cover
"Truth matters. But as the apostle Paul wrote, we must always speak the truth 'in love.' For the Christian, our demeanor is just as important as our words. John Crotts helpfully reminds us that graciousness is at the very heart of the Christian life and is essential to the health of the church. Graciousness is an articulate, biblical, and pastoral reflection on graciousness and how God's people can cultivate this character in their life. Crotts's message is urgently needed in the church and deserves careful consideration by any disciple who treasures the grace of God."
--R. Albert Mohler Jr., president, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, and author of We Cannot Be Silent: Speaking Truth to a Culture Redefining Sex, Marriage, and the Very Meaning of Right and Wrong
"There is a well of wisdom in this book on how to adorn your commitment to the truth with love, humility, and graciousness. Read this book and then give it away."
--Stephen J. Nichols, president, Reformation Bible College, and chief academic officer, Ligonier Ministries
About the Author
John is the Pastor-Teacher of Faith Bible Church in Sharpsburg, Georgia, just south of Atlanta (faithbiblechurch.us). He and his wife Lynn have been at the church in Georgia since 1995. The Lord has blessed them with four children.
John grew up in a Christian home in Virginia Beach, Virginia. He graduated from Liberty University in 1990, and received his MDiv degree from The Master's Seminary in Los Angeles, and his DMin degree from Southern Seminary in Louisville. He served as a board member of FIRE (The Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals) for many years. John's books are Mighty Men: The Starter's Guide to Leading Your Family, Craftsmen: Christ Centered Proverbs for Men; Tying the Knot Tighter: Because Marriage Lasts a Lifetime co-authored with Martha Peace, Loving the Church: God's People Flourishing in God's Family, Upsetting the World: Following Paul's Example of Frontline Evangelism; the Bitesize Biography on John Newton; and Graciousness: Tempering Truth with Love.
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John Crotts has observed this problem directly and addresses the matter in his book, Graciousness: Tempering Truth With Love. While truth is never minimized or marginalized in the book, the author challenges readers to tell the truth with grace and urges them to “temper truth with love.”
The book begins with some basic biblical instruction concerning the art of graciousness. “God cares about more than just the words you say,” writes Crotts. “He also cares about how you say those words. It is not enough always to say the truth; you must also say the truth in love.”
Cross surveys the subject of graciousness in Scripture. The depth and breadth of graciousness is explored and practical suggestions are offered. Specific examples of graciousness from the life of Jesus and Paul are commended. And biblical examples are cited that point out the propensity for people in the church to be ungracious. Of course, the subject matter is practical in our generation as much as it was in the first-century church.
With a solid biblical foundation in place, the author moves forward with a biblical prescription for cultivating habits of graciousness.
Three specific angles are broached including the cultivation of graciousness in the heart, through actions, and in the community. Once again, the Bible guides the thoughts of the author as he presents practical ways to build graciousness as a habit into the fabric of one’s life.
The final chapter, The Gospel and Graciousness is a powerful closing word that will push readers in the right direction as they submit to the Holy Spirit and surrender to his promptings. “A gracious church will impact a community,” writes Crotts. So tempering truth with love is the proper balance that believers should strive for. John Crotts’ excellent work is a first step in the right direction.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.
While many Christian works in recent years have emphasized the importance of graciousness and love in a Christian’s life, resources providing practical instructions in these areas have been lacking. Christians have been left in the abstract. In Graciousness, John Crotts makes concrete how to show grace and love alongside biblical truth. He devotes the first half of the book (chapters 1–5) to add his voice to the conversation on the importance of graciousness (chapters 1–5), examining the example of Jesus Christ in Scripture and the positive and poor examples found throughout the life of the Apostle Paul and the Ephesian church in Revelation 2. The remainder of the book (chapters 6–10) picks up the theme and considers practical applications of graciousness, considering both personal and communal implications.
Graciousness: Tempering Truth with Love by John Crotts calls Christians to cultivate graciousness with biblical truth and shows them the way to live such grace and truth out! Crotts does a wonderful job wedding biblical truth and graciousness. He makes clear throughout the book the gospel is central to the life of a Christian and only for those who trust in Christ as Lord and Savior can they follow Jesus Christ as their example. Crotts is also fair in considering the example of the Apostle Paul, pointing out both his areas of strength and weakness in showing love. For those tempted to speak truth without showing love in theological conversations, they will appreciate Crotts reminder the wisdom of God in His Word and the power of God through prayer are needed in this endeavor. For any Christian who desires to follow Christ’s example, get yourself a copy of Graciousness. You will see what it means to not only know what to speak as truth but how to say it in love and with grace.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Reformation Heritage Books via Cross Focused Reviews for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own and are my honest review of the book.
Most recent customer reviews
it is an easy and fairly fast read.
Some of the chapters are longer than others.Read more