Item description for Christ-Centered Self-Esteem: Seeing Ourselves Through God's Eyes by Charles R. Gerber...
This book is designed to give Christians a perspective of themselves that is biblically correct and individually strengthening. It examines Bible characters, discussing their esteem characteristics in the interest of changing your life for the better.
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Studio: College Press Publishing Company, Inc.
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.06" Width: 5.96" Height: 0.47" Weight: 0.64 lbs.
Release Date Dec 31, 1996
Publisher College Press Publishing Company, Inc.
ISBN 0899006493 ISBN13 9780899006499
Availability 0 units.
More About Charles R. Gerber
Charles R. Gerber currently resides in Muncie, in the state of Indiana. Charles R. Gerber was born in 1958.
Reviews - What do customers think about Christ-Centered Self-Esteem: Seeing Ourselves Through God's Eyes?
Give this to every teen you know! Feb 9, 2003
Mr. Gerber has written a remarkable hand book for Christians living in a sinful world. Today it takes extra effort to navigate through the medias lies and the worlds stresses. The book shows us in and uplifting way how to keep ourselves afloat and close to God. This book is a blessing and would make a wonderful gift for young and old.
Dangerous disregard of sin Jul 15, 2000
It should also be noted that Dr. Gerber dangerously underemphasizes sin.
In chapter four, Dr. Gerber asserts that the two main causes of low self-esteem are 1) valuing wrong things, and 2) comparing yourself to others. In chapter five Dr. Gerber lists (in no particular order of importance, according to the text) "Eight Other Reasons for Low Self Esteem," of which 'sin and guilt' is only one culprit among several. Here are Dr. Gerber's 10 main causes of low self-esteem, in the order they appear in the book:
VALUING WRONG THINGS [what's that--lust? idolatry? coveting? Those are SINS]
COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS [vanity? pride? self-pity? resentment? SIN]
PAINFUL PAST EVENTS [failure to forgive? failure to seek forgiveness? SIN]
FEAR OF OTHERS BEING BETTER THAN US [self-love? self-pity? SIN]
CHILDHOOD EVENTS [failure to forgive? failure to seek forgiveness? SIN]
FAULTY THEOLOGY [not believing or simply neglecting what the Word of God says? SIN]
SATAN AND HIS LIES [failure to stand on the promises of God and wear the Armor of Ephesians 6? Blaming demons for our own actions? SIN]
SIN AND GUILT [sin is SIN, and failure to seek forgiveness for sin from God through Christ is SIN]
WHAT WE WATCH, LISTEN TO, AND READ [if we know we shouldn't, but do it anyway, it's SIN]
SOCIETY [compromise? failure to obey the command to separate oneself from all known sin? Seeking to blame 'society' for our actions? Sin]
Dr. Gerber says that "It would be too general of a statement to say that all low self-esteem is because of sin and guilt" (p. 105). However, note carefully that rather than sin being just one factor among several--no more or less important than the others--EVERY example Dr. Gerber gives can be biblically classified as sin. It's no stretch to say that the "behaviors" he cites as causes of low self-esteem, when boiled down, ARE biblical sin...ALL of them.
All sin, at its core, is rebellion against God. Yet Dr. Gerber's emphasis is on the negative effect these "behaviors" have on our self-esteem, citing Adam and Eve, Paul, and even Satan as questionable examples of damaged or lost self-esteem (pgs. 103-105). But not once in this section did I see him mention the One whom we sin against. That's quite an oversight for a book with the words "Christ-centered" in its title.
What's even worse is that almost every one of Dr. Gerber's listed "behaviors" could potentially allow people to blame someone else for their "low self-esteem." By not calling these sins "sin," one could potentially take almost all of these "behaviors" and play the Blame Game, explaining them away one by one, justifying them with any number of excuses...without ever acknowledging and repenting of the root sin itself. This, despite Jesus' warning to repent or perish (Luke 13:3) because no one who refuses to repent of such "behaviors" will enter the Kingdom of God (1 Cor 6:9; Gal 5:21; Eph 5:5).
I have no doubt that Dr. Gerber means well. I only wish he'd thought this book through more carefully and prayerfully.
"How Great Thou Art," or "How Great WE Are"? Jun 22, 2000
This book should be subtitled, "How To Feel Good About Yourself at Christ's Expense." The back cover reads, "Christ-Centered Self-Esteem is designed to give Christians a perspective of themselves that is biblically correct and individually strengthening." I'm sorry, but the book does neither.
The most alarming passage of the book is in the foreword, and reveals the unbiblical assumption behind the rest of Dr. Gerber's book. Here, the president of a Christian university says that as foolish as it would be for Christians to ignore the Bible, which "is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness," (these covering ALL areas of life, 2 Timothy 3:16), he states it is "equally foolish" for Christians to ignore the often godless and antibiblical claims of "sociologists, psychologists, educators, and even politicians." This makes me wonder how serious a view of Scripture is held by the man who wrote the foreword as well as Dr. Gerber himself, since he must have approved it.
Also, neither man addresses this question: Assuming they all had the same degree of psychological problems we are said to have, how did devout Christians manage to survive for 1,900 years with only the Bible and the Holy Spirit to rely on, lacking as they did professional psychologists and counselors to help them with their "low self-esteem," "unmet needs," "repressed memories," etc? In other words, why are there problems almighty God can't solve, but psychologists can? No Christian psychologist I'm aware of seems willing to answer this obvious question.
The fundamental question asked in this book seems to be, "Why don't we realize how much we are worth to God?" This is a biblically incorrect question. A better question would be, "Why don't we have a better realization of what grace is?" This second question, when thoroughly examined from the Bible, provides a far more accurate picture of who we are, who God is, and what salvation really means.
Dr. Gerber says, "[Calvary] is the place where man can figure out his worth to God...It is also the foundation of a person's self-esteem!" (p. 145) Gerber's argument here seems to be "Since it took the bloody death of God in the flesh to redeem us, we MUST be worth more than we realize."
But Dr. Gerber never quantifies our alleged worth to God. He does boast of our great value (pg. 145-147). But instead of offering sound evidence of HOW MUCH we are worth, he repeatedly falls back on the same assertion that we simply ARE worth much to God, and the death of Christ proves it. What Scriptural support Dr. Gerber does provide in this regard is not convincing, since a plain reading of all passages show that they are more proof texts than genuinely supportive texts, as they say nothing of our "value" as Dr. Gerber seems to mean it.
But didn't Jesus say we are worth more than many sparrows (Matthew 6)? Absolutely! But did He mean we have some intrinsic, material worth beyond that of birds? Or is it because God loves us more than birds because we are made in His image?
To imply that we humans have some intrinsic value that God felt was worth dying for (as Dr. Gerber seems to do) diminishes God; it implies that while God did love us, He COVETED us first and foremost for our as-yet-undetermined and unexplained value, as a man might covet silver or gold. This is not the selfless `agape' love God is said to have shown us at the cross, and commands His followers to show toward others (1 Corinthians 13). This is therefore not the God of the Bible, but it does seem to be the God of Dr. Gerber's book.
This "value/worth" thinking also implies that we humans are of equal value to God, since it took His physical death on the cross to redeem us. This case cannot be made from Scripture, but it is where Dr. Gerber's reasoning inevitably leads.
The death of Christ proves only what Scripture already affirmed long before the term "self-esteem" was even invented: that He loved us so much He sought to save us DESPITE our worthlessness...not because we have "value," but because God IS love.
I'm not calling for self-abasement or self-loathing...no ashtrays dumped on the head, please. I ask only that people see what the Bible really says about both God and us.
The Bible nowhere teaches that Christ died on the cross so I could feel better about myself, even as a Christian. This thinking reduces the cross to a price tag or merit badge I can affix to myself with pride, assuring me of my worth to God. No--the cross shows how great my personal sin really was, and how seriously God takes ALL sin, and how utterly powerless I was to atone. It says nothing about my "worth," real or imagined. In fact, knowing God Himself took on human flesh to pay MY sin debt has the exactly OPPOSITE effect on my self-esteem than Dr. Gerber wants: it humbles me into the dirt because it allows me to begin to see our awesome God as He really is, instead of viewing Him through the warped lens of my own mythical worth. It crushes the pride Dr. Gerber would label "self-esteem."
I truly wish Dr. Gerber focused on just how unworthy of God's amazing grace we all are (that IS why it's called `grace,'after all), and how we should view ourselves in light of that fact (humbly but thankfully, with praise and joy). Instead, he focused on how valuable WE are to God and how good the cross should make US feel. So because the book is so fundamentally man-centered rather than Christ-centered (despite the title), I cannot in good conscience recommend it to anyone.