A Review of The Faith of Demons by Rick Muchewicz
I met Rick Muchewicz on Google+. When I began reading The Faith of Demons, it was everything I expected it would be. Rick’s book is a prophetic book.
Now before you get the wrong idea, I need to explain. Biblical prophets engaged in fore-telling and forth-telling. I don’t believe that Rick makes any effort to do the first but he does plenty of the second. As the prophets of old pointed their fingers at kings and said, “You are the man,” Rick does the same to his fellow evangelicals.
There is a growing genre of books arising in evangelicalism that calls one’s fellows “on the carpet” regarding trends, fads and worse. Rick’s The Faith of Demons is the most recent one that I have seen. In this respect, I find agreement in much of what he questions, exposes and rebukes. For that, I thank him very much and pray that his tribe increases.
On the negative side, I have a few things to add. The Faith of Demons is a lengthy book; too lengthy in my estimation. I love quotes, especially from Christian leaders both past and present that I admire but I think Rick has succeeded where others failed in that he quotes too much from too many sources. In fact, some of the individual quotes are quite lengthy in and of themselves. This is Rick’s book, not Thomas Brooks’, not Jonathan Edwards’, not . . . well, you get the idea.
Along with the many movements and fads within evangelicalism that I would say Amen to Rick’s critiques, he unnecessarily adds those who believe that people should be called to a point of decision to follow Christ. I am not Reformed yet when I speak of a point of difference I have with them, I refer to them as “my Reformed brothers.” To place non-Reformed yet Orthodox members of the Christian faith who aren’t “name and claim it” or one of the other justifiably rebuked groups in Rick’s book I think unnecessarily offends a potential audience who would agree with and grow from Rick’s assessment of the problems within modern evangelicalism. Granted, too many believe that because they walked an aisle or said a prayer that they are eternally secure despite evidencing no fruit and even unrepentant sinful behavior, yet that is not reason enough to repudiate an entire group of evangelicals or lump them in with the ills of evangelicalism. I would say that there are also many among the Reformed who aren’t truly in the faith either but I don’t say that makes illegitimate the way my Reformed brothers and sisters seek to obey God in making disciples.
Related to this, I think that the apologetic (defense) of Calvinism is unneeded and divisive in the way that it is used in Rick’s book. I found myself bogged down and felt detoured from the main point in this section of his book. In fact, if I weren’t writing a review, I would’ve likely stopped reading it altogether at this point. I’m not saying that he didn’t do a good job on this section. It was in fact quite informative and articulate, in my estimation. However, it would’ve been better used in another book by Rick rather than in this one. As further evidence of it being a detour, once the section was complete, I felt like we were back on track with the main point of the book.
I would recommend this book with a qualification. Those who are not Reformed need to be aware that this is a highly Calvinistic work. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t have value. Quite the opposite, Rick is very good at articulating various problems and movements within evangelicalism, exposing them as unbiblical and offering an alternative. All who seek to be true to God’s Word and to live and minister in biblical ways will find many reasons to like and applaud this work as I do. If you as the reader feel bogged down in the Calvinist section or in some other portion of the work, flip ahead, it gets better and back on track, trust me. Don’t give up on an otherwise worthwhile volume that gets individuals within the Church to re-think what they believe, why they believe it and how that impacts how they live, worship and minister.
Rick Muchewicz provided me with a free copy for review purposes.