J.D. Greear. Stop Asking Jesus into your Heart: How to Know for Sure You are Saved. Nashville, Tenn.: B&H Publishing, 2013. 128 pp. $12.99.
In Stop Asking Jesus into your Heart, J.D. Greear is less concerned with critiquing the oft-used method of walking someone through the sinner’s prayer as he is with ensuring that believers are not resting on that prayer, that moment, that ritual as the basis of their assurance and security in Christ. This is an intensely personal subject to Greear who announces at the very onset, “If there were a Guinness Book of World Records record for ‘amount of times having asked Jesus into your heart,’ I’m pretty sure I would hold it,” before relaying his own story of wrestling with assurance of salvation (1).
Does the doctrine of perseverance or eternal security imply that as long as someone prays a prayer and perhaps gets baptized, they can anything they want after that moment assured that they’re, “good with God?” Greear argues instead that, “Salvation is not a prayer you pray in a one-time ceremony and then move on from: salvation is a posture of repentance and faith that you begin in a moment and maintain for the rest of your life” (5). This is the thesis of Greear’s work who spends the rest of the book unpacking this idea.
In Stop Asking Jesus into your Heart, J.D. Greear has presented evangelicalism with a very accessible resource for pastors to put into the hands of their congregants who may be wrestling with assurance. Using his 15 years of pastoral experience, Greear will challenge them to look to Christ, rather than any action on their part for assurance. He will call them to place the weight of their security upon Christ, and submit to His Lordship.
In short, he challenges the reader to stop doing in hopes of ensuring his own salvation, but rather to recognize the finished work of Christ and live in the reality of that truth, for that is the basis of our assurance. If we are relying on Jesus, and living submitted to Him, we can stop asking Jesus into our hearts – he has already taken residence there.
I received this book free from the publisher through LibraryThing.com‘s Early Reviewer Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.