Thursday, November 19, 2009
Wisdom Hunter by Randall Arthur
Although clearly a fictional novel, Wisdom Hunter resounds with deep seeded truths on many pertinent levels. If it weren’t based on a foundation of truth, Arthur wouldn’t have had 85% of the churches that supported his mission agency severe their relationship within a 3 month period. He wouldn’t have been fired on the spot after sharing a copy of Wisdom Hunter with the president of the agency, either. Wisdom Hunter is written in a fictional novel format, but hardly stands as just a work of fiction.
Here’s the central idea. Pastor Jason Faircloth has the Christian world by the tail and spins it at his will. His super-sized congregation amounts to nothing more than mere yes parishioners. They believe Faircloth to be God himself-or atleast to know what God himself would tell the congregation if he could. Faircloth uses every tactic in the book to keep his fold in line-from peer pressure to fear, he knows it all and won’t hesitate to remind them that he is subordinate and not to be questioned.
When Faircloth faces life altering events, he is forced to let go of the control he stubbornly white knuckled and realizes God is not the being he preached about. In fact, everything Faircloth believed up to that point is washed away by pain, and for a short time, indifference, as he is taken to school once more. Only this time, he learns the truth, and in no way a cliché, the truth really does set him free.
Wisdom Hunter is split between two story lines that intersect but never overpower each other. Faircloth goes on an exhaustive search for the grand-daughter he’s never met. At the same time, he searches for the truth in regards to unadulterated ministry. How they meet and change him as a person-well, that’s the beauty of the novel. In the end, the more he tries to manipulate and control each endeavor, the further from his destination he goes. Once he gives in to what it is that God wants him to learn, it is only then that he witnesses the things he adamantly searched for coming to him. Literally.
This is not an easy read for those wanting to cling to traditions or the teachings they have come to hold near and dear. It is, however, a real eye opener for those willing to believe there is more to what man was created for than following a list of rules and regulations. In fact, if you are convinced those man-made rules and regulations push you further away from God and man, this is the exact book for you.
Who would have guessed when it was originally released in 1991, it would become a source of prized comfort to those tired of legalism and ready for real ministry. With Mulnomahs’ release in September, it is available once again for those wanting to ditch the bottle and tackle the meat of ministry. The information in this book is real and can be applied starting today. Now. As you read.
It took guts and real passion for Arthur to tackle legalism in the church. He writes of questioning and reasoning what is taught and not just blind acceptance. He exposes the root of evil in following rules and regulations to the point of severing relationships. In fact, his emphasis is strong when he shows how it is responsible for uprooting family ties instead of making them bind tighter. Only God could have guided Arthur's hand as he penned this modern classic.
Not to be confused with a how-to, this is more of a how-not-to. It’s time to take off the religious hats and quit parroting what we believe to be between the lines of our Bibles. If you’re willing, Wisdom Hunter is primed and ready.
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Multnomah Books (September 20, 2003)
Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.2 x 1 inches
NOTE: Multnomah provided a copy of Wisdom Hunter for review purposes.