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Young, Restless, Reformed: A Journalist's Journey with the New Calvinists Paperback – March 31, 2008
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"Collin Hansen invites us on a voyage of discovery, learning how our restless youth are discovering anew the great doctrines of the Christian faith. Weary of churches that seek to entertain rather than teach, longing after the true meat of the Word, these young people are pursuing doctrine. Discover how God is moving among the young, the restless, and the Reformed."
—Tim Challies, blogger, Challies.com
"Young, Restless, Reformed is the product of some outstanding research. This book will help the reader gain valuable insight into the growing Reformed movement in America."
—Jerry Bridges, author, The Pursuit of Holiness
"Collin Hansen has uncovered a fresh movement of young Christians for whom doctrine fuels evangelism, kindles passion, and transforms lives. Read it and rejoice."
—David Neff, Editor-in-chief, Christianity Today media group
"A number of strategic ministries have been quietly upholding the doctrines of grace, planting churches, seeing people converted, teaching the whole counsel of God. It is time for quiet gratitude to God and earnest intercessory prayer that what has begun well will flourish beyond all human expectation."
—D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Cofounder, The Gospel Coalition
"This lively account is must reading for ministry leaders working with young adults. A wake-up call to baby boomers to move beyond the superficial faith they taught their children and to grow with them in the knowledge and love of God."
—Douglas A. Sweeney, distinguished professor of church history and the history of Christian thought; director, Jonathan Edwards Center, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
About the Author
Collin Hansen (MDiv, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) serves as the editorial director for the Gospel Coalition. He previously worked as an associate editor for Christianity Today magazine and coedits the Cultural Renewal series with Tim Keller. He and his wife belong to Redeemer Community Church in Birmingham, Alabama, and he serves on the advisory board of Beeson Divinity School. You can follow him on Twitter at @collinhansen.
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I bought this book being an avid listener many years to Driscoll, in which Hansen discusses in the last chapter. I also bought it as I wrestle with my own understanding soteriology. This book was eye-opening to see the phenomena Reformed teaching and Calvinism capturing a generation (or two, by this point). The Arminian denomination I'm in, worries about exactly what some of the Calvinist leaders detest, namely fear of "reaching the postmodern generation." I too, detested many of my professors at the Bible College I went to telling me we need to think up new ways to reach this generation, the generation I'm apart of.
Quite the opposite, it was always my personal opinion (which I was sure other people out there held this opinion too) that the Gospel will always compel some to repentance, and offend others into hard-hearted rejection. The problem is not with the Gospel and "if it can 'sell' in this generation," the problem is the church becoming pansy-like and worrying about offending someone with the truth.
Hansen touches on a lot of teachers, and churches that have had no desire to apologize for something that needs to be apologized for: the Bible, God's sovereignty, and the state of humanity. Whether or not if you're reformed/Calvinist, or Arminian, if you love Jesus and love to see His Kingdom on fire (even if it's not you're preferred cup of theological tea), you should be warmed by this book.
One thing that Driscoll apparently told Hansen near the end of the book, is that Reformed theology is not the only thing seeing a resurgence. So is Catholicism and Eastern Orthodox churches, apparently as well. I know Hansen himself is reformed, but I would be happy to see his journalism skills research these other resurgences as well.
All in all, a great read, and it will be read again, I'm sure.
Don't be misled by the "Journalist's Journey", like that will be balanced journalism (and we know journalism isn't usually balanced anyway). Somewhat one sided and two dimensional, not too deep and doesn't cover every side of the story. If you are looking for a treatise on Calvinism vs. Arminianism, look elsewhere. The pic on the cover should have Piper on the T-shirt, instead of Edwards - Massive hero worship of Piper! But overall I enjoyed the book and learned some things from it.
Hansen interviews both proponents of the New Calvinism and critics (such as Roger Olson and Jerry Vines). While his sympathies seem to lie with the young Reformed crowd, he doesn't hesitate to discuss some of the problems with the movement. His writing is lucid and often humorous. I think the most exciting thing about this book is reading the many conversion stories. So many of the new Calvinists are former druggies, atheists, or atheological Evangelicals who wouldn't have known theology if it bit them on the nose. Then they encountered Reformed theology in some form or another and got angry. Then they read their Bibles and met a God bigger than they ever could have imagined. Now they are engaging in serious study, passionate worship, and daring evangelism.
Wherever you might fall on the theological spectrum, this is a book worth reading for those who care about the Church and its future.