Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners (Union)

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Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners (Union)

Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners (Union)

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Our okay-ness, our record, our identity, our significance, are no longer in our hands, not even a little. Deeper is relationally internal and responsive; it does not center on human improvement but on love for the person. This book makes the case that a believer’s sanctification does not happen by doing more or becoming better, but by going deeper into the wondrous gospel truths that washed over them when they were first united to Christ. I see a lot of reviewers saying the characters are not likable and that is why they give it a lower rating and I simply don't get that way of thinking. Importantly, Ortlund does not suggest that such experience is normative, nor does he indicate that it is necessary.

He is the author of Gentle and Lowly: The Heart of Christ for Sinners and Sufferers and Deeper: Real Change for Real Sinners .It’s then, as you give up on yourself and throw your hands up in the air, that your heart is most fertile for the supernaturalizing power of the Holy Spirit” (167). The TUNNELS series in general is probably one of the most realistic and grim YA universes out there. In this book, Dane Ortlund points believers to Christ, making the case that sanctification does not happen by doing more or becoming better, but by going deeper into the wondrous gospel truths that washed over them when they were first united to him. Ortlund offers nine meditations that push and encourage readers to a biblical model of sanctification.

I do think this book is really accessible and not at all intimidating, so I’d also recommend it to younger Christians, even if they’ve never read the Bible on their own. To grow as a disciple of Christ is not adding Christ to your life but collapsing into Christ as your life. Further, the relation of justification to sanctification was handled in a way that preserved the separation of the two yet indicated that the one could not exist without the other. It’s easy to think that as we grow as Christians, we move on to ‘higher things’ (whatever that means! As a graduating student, is my choice of church, career path, college, trade school, or military service a sign that I’m free to forge my own way, or am I simply bound by the standards of my parents or my culture?

Angst, per Kierkegaard, is the feeling of one’s soul and self being pulled apart when we recognize our freedom amidst bondage, and the infinite amidst our seemingly finite lives.

As part of Crossway’s Union series, Deeper aims at delighting in God, growing in Christ, serving the church, and blessing the world. I won't be continuing the last book any time soon unless I'm on a happy high and feel the need to get sucked into depression. If we long to grow in Christ, we dare not do what comes so naturally—namely, say we believe that the verdict over our lives is decisively settled in our justified status before God but then move on to other ideas and strategies when it comes to our emotional lives and daily pressures.We might think of justification as the thing that starts the Christian life, but it’s actually what sustains our daily growth in grace. We need to remember what we are without Christ to continue to promote the humility necessary to be properly engaged with Christ.

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