Every once in a while a book is published that is so helpful, so original, and so needed, that it makes one wonder, Why was this book not written before now? James Anderson, associate professor of theology and philosophy here at RTS Charlotte, has written such a book: What’s Your Worldview? An Interactive Approach to Life’s Big Questions (Crossway, 2o14).
This is a wonderful little book for a number of reasons. (1) Target audience. Although this book is certainly for Christians, it has a strong evangelistic thrust to it. It is designed to be given to non-Christians. (2) Methodology: Anderson has written this book from a presuppositional perspective and demonstrates that such an apologetic approach is really practical, understandable, and effective for evangelism (despite perceptions to the contrary!). (3) Creativity. This book is distinctive in terms of how it is structured. Anderson takes the reader through a “Choose Your Own Adventure” type of journey, where the path is chosen by the responses of the reader. There is really nothing else like it.
Don’t miss this book. Buy a bunch of copies and give to your neighbors or friends. Or work through it in a Sunday School class or home Bible study. Here are the glowing endorsements:
“I can think of readers to whom I would not give this book: they like their reading material to be straightforward exposition. The notion of an interactive book, where readers are forced to choose distinguishable paths and interact with discrete lines of thought, finding their own worldviews challenged—well, that does not sound very relaxing, and it may be a bit intimidating. But James Anderson has written something that is as creative as it is unusual: he has written a book in clear prose and at a popular level that nevertheless challenges readers to think, and especially to identify and evaluate their own worldviews. If the style is akin to ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ books, the content is at least as entertaining and far more important.”
—D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
“This book will become ‘the book’ that will be used by campus ministers, students, and a host of others who are constantly being drawn into conversations concerning worldviews. The layout of this book is ingenious, helpful, and engaging. The information found in these short pages will provide accurate long-term care for those on a ‘worldview journey.’”
—Rod Mays, National Coordinator, Reformed University Fellowship
“What’s Your Worldview? is a brilliant concept, because each generation stumbles into its own ways to learn about God. Francis Schaeffer spoke about truth to many now old. James Anderson speaks to the young who grew up with ‘Choose Your Own Adventure’ books, where the outcome depends on the choices readers make. A great gift for thoughtful teens who need to choose wisely.”
—Marvin Olasky, Editor in Chief, World News Group
“James Anderson’s What’s Your Worldview is a delightfully innovative apologetic. I know of nothing like it. It gets the reader to interact by asking crucial worldview questions. Depending on the reader’s answers, he is led to further questions, or to a conclusion. Animating the journey is a cogent Christian apologetic, showing that only the Christian worldview yields cogent answers to the questions. Anderson’s approach is both winsome and biblical, as well as being the most creative apologetic book in many years. I pray that it gets a wide readership.”
—John M. Frame, J. D. Trimble Chair of Systematic Theology and Philosophy, Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando
“Thanks to James Anderson for filling a massive gap in apologetics and worldview thinking. This book is unique in that it is wholly and broadly accessible to readers of any background and educational level, and yet written by an accomplished Christian philosopher. Written with wit, clarity, cogency and simplicity, this book ingeniously guides the reader from a chosen worldview to its implications. Urging the reader to connect the conceptual dots of his own thinking, this book should lead its reader either to turmoil or to truth. This will now be the first book on my list for people who ask ultimate questions about Christianity and its relationship to other ways of thinking. Get this book, read it, then get more to give away to friends and family.”
—K. Scott Oliphint, Professor of Apologetics and Systematic Theology, Westminster Theological Seminary
“What’s Your Worldview offers a uniquely interactive approach to finding answers to life’s biggest and most important questions. It makes identifying your worldview, and perhaps replacing it with a better one, an enjoyable adventure.”
—Tim Challies, blogger, Challies.com; author, The Discipline of Spiritual Discernment
“There has been a plethora of books written about worldview in the past 25 years, but Dr. Anderson has done something much better—he has written a book that helps you discern your worldview, and then ask yourself some penetrating questions about it. Is all as it should be in your worldview? Read on, and find out.”
—Rev. William Fullilove, Assistant Professor of Old Testament and Assistant Academic Dean, Reformed Theological Seminary, Atlanta
“For some time now, the church has been in desperate need of an accessible and practical tool that would help people evaluate the cogency and coherence of their worldviews. Finally, with this new book, that need is being met. James Anderson is one of the brightest new voices in the world of philosophical theology. You will not want to miss this book.”
—Michael J. Kruger, President and Professor of New Testament, Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte; author, Canon Revisited
“Not the last word on worldviews, but quite possibly the first! What’s Your Worldview? is creative, clear, and fun, but with some ‘nice’ and necessary sharp edges. I hope and pray it will have the desired effect of making all those who read it stop and think (Isa. 44:19).”
—Daniel Strange, Academic Vice Principal and Tutor in Culture, Religion and Public Theology, Oak Hill Theological College, London
“Dr. James Anderson has provided the church with a unique new tool to help the next generation be prepared to give the reason for the hope that is within them.”
—Hugh Whelchel, Executive Director, The Institute for Faith, Work & Economics; author, How Then Should We Work?
Chris LeDuc says
Quite an endorsement there Dr Kruger. I love apologetics and now might try to find a way to get this into the rotation. Problem is Ive already got literally6-8 books I am in the middle of, not counting the sem work which is…a lot. Anyway thanks for the heads up on this one.
Dr. Kruger, I have read in a comment on the Euangelion blog that we have more copies of The Shepherd of Hermas from ancient times then of the canonical gospels, if true, what do you think it means for the canon. I would be very thankful if you would answer my question even though it does not pertain to the article it is commenting on.
Michael Kruger says
Thanks, Aric. What you have heard is misleading, depending on what the original statement intended to say. We have more ancient copies of the canonical gospels than almost any text in antiquity. What the original statement probably meant is that we have many copies of the Shepherd in the first couple of centuries, even more than the Gospel of Mark. And that is true. But, this does not necessarily mean anything definitive for the canon. Some books, like the Shepherd, were very popular with early Christians even though they did not, on the whole, regard it as Scripture. And other books were regarded as Scripture, even though they were not always the most popular (Mark was the least used Gospel, but never really doubted as Scripture). We even do this in the modern day. A Purpose Driven Life is much more popular than the book of 2 Peter, but very few would regard the former as Scripture on this basis (I hope!). So, numerical popularity is an important consideration, but is not an absolute standard for what Christians regarded as Scripture. As a whole, with minor exceptions aside, the canonical books far outpace apocryphal ones in terms of early copies. I cover this in my book Canon Revisited in much more detail.
Thank you! that was very helpful!
I would like to ask if anyone regarded The Shepherd as scripture, and why it would be more popular than the gospels in the first few centuries. Was there a big controversy about The Shepherd? I did read some of your book, it was very helpful, but like many books from a more conservative perspective (like Andreas Kostenberger’s The Cradle, the Cross, and the Crown) It seems to leave out some rich details about early Christianity despite it’s high quality. this is a difficulty especially when trying to use these books as a contrast to works by Robert M Price and other skeptics. I have found a great deal of valuable information in your and Kostenberger’s works. and I thank you for writing them.
I don’t want to waste your time with frivolous comments, but maybe you could author a reply to Robert Price or other skeptics. I would be especially appreciative of something to that effect. And you are very knowledgeable on these things. I thank you once again for replying to my first comment.