Review: Why Johnny Can’t Preach: The Media Have Shaped the Messengers

Why Johnny Can't Preach: The Media Have Shaped the MessengersWhy Johnny Can’t Preach: The Media Have Shaped the Messengers by T. David Gordon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a reactionary book, which makes for great reading. Gordon is passionate, and has some very important things to say. He critiques four types of bad preaching, and argues that they are in large measure the result of a pastoral mind shaped by image and noise rather than text. The answer for Gordon is to encourage pre-seminarians to major in English lit, to broaden their minds and give them the ability to interact meaningfully with a text, to communicate in a clear, ordered fashion, and to do so before the study of Greek and Hebrew, and before souls are dependent on the preacher for their food.

Wise counsel, and I for one could not have been better prepared for seminary than the liberal arts degree I have, but I do wonder if Gordon overplays his hand a bit. Of course, even if he does, he is pushing the pendulum back in the right direction, and the chances of this book causing a massive overcorrection are slim.

All in all, a helpful and stimulating book.

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