Book Review: Love Your God With All Your Mind

Book by JP Moreland

Review by Stephen Rodgers

Love Your God With All Your Mind may just be JP Moreland’s most didactic book yet-and that’s saying something. In this text, weighing in at a scant 200 pages (but a tad denser than you might expect), Moreland is a man on a mission. He has seen his students trying on the anti-intellectual attitudes of secular society, and like a man trying on a shirt with a too-small collar, he doesn’t like the fit. CS Lewis once remarked that “[Christ] wants a child’s heart, but a grown-up’s head,” and it is in support of this premise that Moreland throws himself into the fray.

Caveat emptor: this is not the irenic Moreland from Kingdom Triangle. Rather this is Moreland-with-a-bee-in-his-bonnet discoursing on a topic that has apparently struck a bit too close for comfort. I do NOT think that his argumentation suffers as a result (it certainly isn’t a viciously-circular polemic as some Amazon reviews would suggest), but the man is certainly not dispassionate or shy in his presentation.

The book is divided into four main sections: why the mind matters in Christianity (history, Biblical support, and the role of the intellect in sanctification), how to develop a mature Christian mind (descriptive and prescriptive techniques), what a mature Christian mind looks like (emphasis on evangelism, apologetics, worship, and worldview), and guaranteeing a future for the Christian mind (closing comments on ecclesiology and some appendices which are fantastically useful).

It would, quite frankly, be impossible to give you a decent overview in this space in The Beacon. Suffice to say, you should read this book, your friends should read this book, and you should have deep discussions over ethnic food regarding what you’ve read. It’s a dense book, so order dessert.

That is NOT to say that I agree wholeheartedly with everything that Moreland concludes (I find his views on senior pastorship disagreeable); and I would suggest that it would be the height of irony to blindly accept the premises of a text devoted to rationality and logic without engaging in critical reasoning of your own. To that end, I’d like to suggest some topics for discussion (framed in a classical pedagogical style, in honor of the text in question) that I found to be of interest from throughout the book. What does it mean to “love God with your mind” and has the church betrayed this position (Chapter 1)? What are the implications of total depravity in regards to reason (Chapter 2)? What is the “empty self” (Chapter 4)? Should all Christians be logicians as well (Chapter 5)? How can we best honor God by reading (Chapter 8)? According to Moreland, what is the role of the senior pastor (Chapter 10)?

On the bright side, concluding with Moreland’s ultimate premise, it’s an open-Bible test.

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The Beacon is the monthly newsletter for Lighthouse Bible Church in San Diego, California. It covers a variety of subjects including LBC events, church history, current events from a Christan perspective, ministry profiles, and messages from our pastors and elders. To join the Beacon ministry, please contact Stephen Rodgers.

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