Sometimes Judge A Book By Its Cover

I’m loving adam4d – his comics have the right touch of biting commentary and humour. Take for instance this one on judging a book by its cover:

I’ve said before in sermons and in conversation: you can generally tell if a Christian book is dodgy by the cover – if the cover has a good looking, happy, smiling person paired with a positive title, then it’s time to put the book down.

And to prove my point, here’s some examples:

Joel Osteen

Joel Osteen

Joyce Meyer

Joyce Meyer

Joseph Prince

Joseph Prince

TD Jakes

TD Jakes

I think there’s one general reason why these books all look the same: the message needs to match the messenger. All of the authors above teach a version of what is known as the prosperity gospel: that God’s intention is to prosper you materially (in finances, health, mental well-being, relationships, etc) if you put enough faith in him. The implicit message the covers need to give is this: if you read this book, if you adhere to my message, you will be as prosperous as I visibly am.

Now this is not to say that all books with the author’s face and a positive title are dodgy – but with prosperity false teachers it’s a consistent theme.

On the flip side, here are some of the books from much more solid authors I regularly recommend:

John Piper

John Piper

Joshua Harris, CJ Mahaney, Matt Chandler

Josh Harris - CJ Maheny - Matt Chandler

Don Carson, JI Packer

DA Carson - JI Packer

Tim Keller

Tim Keller

Matthias Media

Matthias Media

Notice the difference?

Published bySteven

Steven grew up in a nominal Buddhist home, was introduced to Jesus in early university and after lengthy debate and reading came to realise that Jesus made more sense of life, meaning, morality and our ultimate destiny. Graduating from Queensland Theological College in 2011, Steven is a Pastor at his home church, SLE Church, in Brisbane, Queensland. Steven is also husband to Steph, father to Jayden, Janessa, and Eliza, and part time blogger. He also loves a good New Zealand Pinot Noir, Australian craft beer, and coffee. Though preferably not mixed together.