Alisa Childers was well grounded in orthodox Christian beliefs when she began attending a class at her local church led by a progressive pastor. “Progressive” is the contemporary word for “emergent” as in the Emergent Movement led by Brian McLaren, Rob Bell, Rachel Held Evans, Tony Jones and others, earlier in the 21st century, which has been absorbed into much of evangelicalism today. By whatever name, progressive Christian leaders seek to deconstruct long-held and cherished essential doctrines and replace them with liberal views and doubt. Childers’ involvement in the class nearly upended her faith but, rather than become another scalp for progressive teachers, she dug in, did copious research and ultimately found her faith strengthened. She writes this book, not only to tell her story but to offer insight, a way forward, and resources for others being drawn into the progressive camp.
The author demonstrates how progressive Christianity attacks three key doctrines: Scripture, the cross, and the gospel (pp. 77-83). She summarizes and illustrates progressives’ attack on each of these foundational truths, then ably defends conservative and historically orthodox views of each. Using quotes from early church leaders, as well as recent apologists, Childers presents solid reasons as to why the cardinal doctrines of the faith, as held by Christians throughout the centuries, are true and can be trusted.
In a winsome way, Another Gospel argues for the time-honored, agreed-upon essentials of Christianity. Her quotes, resources, biblical exegesis and reasoning powerfully undergird these truths and dismantle the attempts by progressives to destroy these doctrines which, in turn, would overthrow the faith of many. This work is an excellent and highly readable book that will strengthen biblical understanding of any who are struggling with what they believe and why. And, for a bonus, a fine peach cobbler recipe is found on page 126.
Another Gospel? A Lifelong Christian Seeks Truth in Response to Progressive Christianity; By Alisa Childers (Carol Stream: Tyndale Momentum, 2020) 267 pp., paper., $13.34
Reviewed by Gary E. Gilley, Pastor/teacher at Southern View Chapel