Monday, March 2, 2020

Book Review: Worthy by Elyse Fitzpatrick and Eric Schumacher

About the Book:

What does the Bible say about the value of women?  Does the Bible teach that women are as valuable as men or does it portray them as somehow more flawed, more suspect, or weak and easily deceived?

Beginning from Genesis and working all the way through the storyline of the Bible, Worthy demonstrates the significant and yes, even surprising, ways that God has used women to accomplish His kingdom goals. Because, like men, they are created in His image, their lives reflect and declare His worth. Worthy will enable and encourage both men and women to embrace this true and lofty vision of God's creation, plan, and their value in His eyes.

Bestselling author Elyse Fitzpatrick and pastor Eric Schumacher together invite women to embrace a transformative and empowering view of their Maker, themselves, and the church. But this isn't only a book for women. It is also a book for men, especially leaders, who want to grow in their understanding of God's perspective on women, people who normally make up the majority of their congregations; men who might be wondering if they've missed something amid the abuse scandals that are rocking the church. Might the headlines they're reading today about abuse have their roots in a denigration of the value and worth of women? Worthy: Celebrating the Value of Women will help every reader see the value, place, and calling of women through study questions and a "Digging Deeper" section that will help men and women discover how to cherish, value, and honor one another for God's glory.

My Thoughts:

In Worthy: Celebrating the Value of Women authors Elyse Fitzpatrick and Eric Schumacher step boldly into the fray to defend women against stereotypes, assumptions, misogyny, and abuses in today’s Christian culture. I did not agree with everything in this book, but I thoroughly appreciate their work.

As someone who has been deeply wounded by some of the evangelical church’s teachings to and about women, I’m questioning many beliefs I once held tightly. Worthy gave me hope as it breathed a new, healthier perspective into the old, damaging teachings I’ve been taught since childhood. It clearly demonstrates that Biblical interpretation can easily be skewed by one’s worldview, social environment, or church culture. Worthy frequently demonstrated that simply shifting how a passage is perceived can completely change its effect and message. I do think at times they presented ideal situations and skipped over challenging passages. Still, the bottom-line message of the book is that God values women as much as He values men. No more, no less. And I can definitely get on board with that message.

I think Worthy: Celebrating the Value of Women by Elyse Fitzpatrick and Eric Schumacher is a step in the right direction and I wish all pastors, especially those on the more conservative side would read it. Given all the SBC endorsements, I wasn’t terribly surprised to read that they consider themselves complementarians and deny that women can hold the office of pastor. However, I appreciated their call for respectful interaction with others of different opinions. They acknowledge that Christians can love God deeply, serve him with devotion, yet still hold different convictions.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.

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