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Scott Kelso: Theological Violence in the 21st Century

Scott T. Kelso, Theological Violence in the 21st Century: The Eclipse of Ethics and Morality in Today’s World (New York: Boss Media, 2021), 184 pages, ISBN 9781633375079.

In the Old Testament, we are shown how God sent prophets again and again to warn Israel of its impending destruction if it did not repent of its idolatry. Tragically, the prophetic warnings were not heeded, the Temple was destroyed, and the Jews had to suffer defeat, exile and humiliation (2 Chr 36:15-20).
Similarly starting in the 19th Century, scholar prophets have warned the American Church that liberal theologies in their various forms were gutting the Church and leading it into forms of secular idolatry. Among those who filled the prophetic role was Machen J Gresham’s Christianity and Liberalism (1923) and John Warwick Montgomery in his classic The Suicide of Christian Theology (1970).

Scholar prophets have warned the American Church that liberal theologies in their various forms were gutting the Church and leading it into forms of secular idolatry.

A new addition to this from of prophetic warning is Dr. Scott T. Kelso’s Theological Violence in the 21st Century. His work documents the failures of the church to withstand ideologies and trends that are counter to Scripture and good moral order. Dr. Kelso takes particular aim at the 1960s sexual revolution, which has led to the present triumph of the disastrous LGBTQ movement. The steady and now rapid advance of the Left political agenda, which disregards all spiritual matters, is also a major focus of Kelso’s work.

Against these tendencies, Dr. Kelso posits a renewal of the church to be both prophetic and discerning. Discerning in a renewed ability to see into the unseen spiritual world. Prophetic in declaring, like the Old Testament prophets, the evil of idolatries (false ideologies) but doing so with the New Testament concern for speaking prophecy in love. Dr. Kelso also advocates a rebirth of the spiritual virtue of the fear of the Lord (chapter 5) – not a popular subject of sermons.

The present day church must regain the early church’s faith and ability to do the impossible in preaching and demonstrating the miraculous for the Kingdom of God.

The present day church must regain the early church’s faith and ability to do the impossible in preaching and demonstrating the miraculous for the Kingdom of God (chapter 9).

I recommend this work and I believe it could be especially useful as a book read and discussed in adult education and sharing groups.

Reviewed by William L. De Arteaga

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Category: Living the Faith, Summer 2021

About the Author: William L. De Arteaga, Ph.D., is known internationally as a Christian historian and expert on revivals and the rebirth and renewal of the Christian healing movement. His major works include Quenching the Spirit: Discover the Real Spirit Behind the Charismatic Controversy (Creation House, 1992, 1996), Forgotten Power: The Significance of the Lord’s Supper in Revival (Zondervan, 2002), Agnes Sanford and Her Companions: The Assault on Cessationism and the Coming of the Charismatic Renewal (Wipf & Stock, 2015), and The Public Prayer Station: Taking Healing Prayer to the Streets and Evangelizing the Nones (Emeth Press, 2018). Bill pastored two Hispanic Anglican congregations in the Marietta, Georgia area, and is semi-retired. He continues in his healing, teaching and writing ministry and is the state chaplain of the Order of St. Luke, encouraging the ministry of healing in all Christian denominations. Facebook

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