I am a relatively new Christian. Therefore from time to time I like to read Christian literature to help with the growth of my faith and to hear what other Christians have to say. My faith reading so far this year has been quite eclectic. I started off with Trusting God: Even When it Hurts by Jerry Bridges followed by a re-read of Believing in Faeries by Marcia Zina Mager. Being in the mood for some more Christian literature I was pleased to spot The Gospel in Ten Words by Paul Ellis offered for free on Amazon and I didn’t hesitate to download it to my kindle.
In The Gospel in Ten Words Paul Ellis tackles the mammoth task of trying to simplify the message of The Gospel. Ellis believes for too long Christians have been fed over-complicated and mixed message teachings of The Gospel, which has clouded the true simplicity and joy that can found within it. To help him break down this mammoth subject Ellis splits The Gospel into just ten important words and splits this book into a chapter on each. Those words are Loved, Forgiven, Saved, Union, Accepted, Holy, Righteous, Died, New, and Royal. I thought this concept was simple but worked really well. I made a slow start on The Gospel of Ten Words but once I got into the chapters on each word and how they flowed on to the next word and chapter I flew through the rest of the book.
Paul Ellis is another author I had not heard of before, I am really glad I discovered him and this book though. The style of The Gospel in Ten Words is detailed, friendly, and down to earth. Most of the book is Ellis’s own thoughts but he does regularly back up his arguments with quotations from The Bible, and other Christian scholars and authors. This made for an interesting mixture of personal argument and scripture which I thought kept my attention more alert.
Unlike Trusting God by Jerry Bridges The Gospel in Ten Words was an easy read for me as it doesn’t tackle such hard or painful thoughts as my previous Christian read had. Instead Ellis’s aim is to bring joy, peace, and a sense of freedom to those who read this book. He wants everyone to understand that through The Gospel we can learn that God loves us all and has already forgiven us of all our mistakes. I think Ellis is successful in his aims in this book. I certainly felt a sense of peace and freedom after reading his simplified meaning of The Gospel. I am currently reading The New Testament of The Bible and as much as I enjoy the stories and parables it contains, I think it is easy to lose the simpler meaning behind it all. So in that sense for me The Gospel in Ten Words and The New Testament were good to read in conjunction with each other.
I thought The Gospel in Ten Words was a refreshing and interesting look at the message of The Gospel which helped me look through all the stories and focus on the simple facts that truly matter to a practising Christian today. I highly recommend to those interested in Christian literature.
Have you read Paul Ellis? Any recommendations for other faith literature?