Item description for The God Who Smokes: Scandalous Meditations on Faith by Timothy Stoner...
Overview With a casual, narrative voice, Stoner presents an honest look at a controversial subject. This work is an unwavering answer to the postmodern cry for an authentic, knowable truth, and Stoner offers an engaging argument for those seeking to understand this cultural phenomenon.
Publishers Description A church divided?Emergent theology is raising some of the most provocative and divisive questions in the church today. For some, these ideas embody the true spirit of the gospel, trading tired religion for authenticity and relevance. Others dismiss it as a heresy that compromises the gospel in the name of tolerance and dilutes the truth to attract a jaded generation.Is there any room for middle ground?Timothy Stoner thinks so. Join him as he provides an honest response to the postmodern cry for authentic spirituality. Filled with humorous insights and challenging ideas, "The God Who Smokes" imagines a twenty-first-century church where hope hangs with holiness, passion sits next to purity, and compassion can relate to character. Timothy celebrates the good within Emergent while providing a balanced and thoughtful critique. Throughout, you'll discover not only the issues that can divide but also the burning passion that can unite us all.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.26" Width: 5.52" Height: 0.83" Weight: 0.88 lbs.
Release Date Feb 1, 2008
Publisher NAV PRESS #111
ISBN 1600062474 ISBN13 9781600062476
Availability 0 units.
More About Timothy Stoner
Timothy Stoner grew up in Chile and Spain, where his parents served as missionaries. He attended Grand Rapids Theological Seminary before going on to law school. He has been practicing law for twenty years and lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with his wife, Patty. They have five children. Timothy is also president of Orphan Justice Mission.
Reviews - What do customers think about The God Who Smokes: Scandalous Meditations on Faith?
Title insinuates, but .... Sep 27, 2008
It has long been held that you cannot judge a book by its cover, but is it possible to judge a book by its title? Admittedly, when first looking over The God Who Smokes by Timothy Stoner, I believed I was about to read a horrible book. A man named "Stoner" writes a book about a God who smokes-what is this, a theological treatise about marijuana? Stoner isn't a pothead, after all. Rather, he is the son of missionary parents who attended seminary before venturing off to law school. His passion for authentic Christianity is infused throughout the book. A seminarian cannot find fault with his exegesis of biblical texts, either.
It turns out, however, that you cannot judge a book by its back cover, either. Flipping the book over and reading the back cover lead me to believe I was reading a book that will bridge the middle ground between traditionalism in the church and what's come to be called Emergent Theology.
Emergent Theology is a shift away from the nuances bred by modernity to embrace postmodern ideology in Christian garb. Stoner's meditations seem little more than reflections of his life-with only one notable example of trying to bridge the gap between traditionalism and the emerging Church. With that said, the book is marvelously written, but not for the reasons disclosed on the cover. Its meditative qualities are amazing, not as a polemic about bad theology, but due to the fact that Stoner writes as a husband and a father. Transparency, with good writing, is indeed a great thing. Any person who reads this book will find him or herself puzzled by some illustrations but nodding silently with much of what is written.
Authors should be careful when choosing titles. Stoner rightly believes that God is so full of passion that he "burns," hence the title: The God Who Smokes. The subtitle insinuates that the work is a series of scandalous meditations on faith. Not hardly-and although it's somewhat disjointed, it is a good meditation for those on a faith journey.
Armchair Interviews says: A good analysis of a book that is different than the title indicates.
Great book Jul 26, 2008
Are you concerned about the direction Christianity seems to be headed? A direction where a lot of the fundamental truths of who is God seem to be in question, where truth seems relative. That was one of main motivations for reading this book. This book helped me articulate alot of concerns I have and helped give me ideas on how to proclaim the Truth.
Mr. Stoner has an incredible gift to tell stories. This wasnt just some kind of apologetic book, but a book of stories that reveal many truths. I was able to eat, smell and tastes these truths by the his vivid writing style. And he did it in non argumentative way. Great read, i think you would enjoy it.
A Must Read Jul 10, 2008
Philip Yancey, John Piper, Ravi Zaharias, and Donald Miller are among my favorite Christian writers. I am now adding Timothy Stoner to that list. He is honest, intelligent, theologically sound, and compassionate. An impressive combination! He allows us a glimpse into his life - how he thinks, what he thinks about, and how those thoughts have been shaped by experiences and the people around him. His is a superb writer, as well, drawing the reader in from one topic and one chapter to another. I read this on a plane and finished each chapter so excited I could barely sit still! I was sad to have finished it, but I will read it again and again. Once through is not enough!
Wise, Insightful, Enlightening, and Funny! Jul 9, 2008
I'm not a real avid reader, and I have a bad habit of losing interest in books before even getting halfway through. So that when I say I enjoyed this book to the last page, it goes without saying that it's worth every penny.
Stoner's writing style is very personable. Reading things like CS Lewis, I feel as though I'm there to learn and sometimes have to read a paragraph 3 times to even get a clue about what he was trying to convey. Stoner, on the other hand, draws you in at a very personal level and makes you feel like you're sitting in a coffee shop having a heart-to-heart with him. He draws on scripture and a multitude of power-thinkers of the Christian world to drive home often forgotten or misunderstood truths about Jesus. I can say without doubt that I was deeply convicted and challenged several times during my journey through this book.
Also unlike a typical apologetics book, Stoner incorporates relevant life stories into each chapter. At times, you almost feel as if you're simply reading Stoner's blog and his personal reflections on what God taught him through the experience. I love this approach as it helped me relate these seemingly controversial concepts about Jesus into my own life quite easily. He brings the word down to earth in a very accessible way.
On top of the powerful content, Stoner has a very dry, subtle wit that sneaks into even the deepest discussion points of the book. In the midst of learning a great deal about Stoner's childhood and his reflections on scripture, a funny comment would catch me off-guard and have me busting up laughing out loud in the middle of a quiet room or plane flight.
To be fair, I do feel the need to acknowledge another review that referred to Stoner's writing as combative, especially towards Rob Bell and his assertions in Velvet Elvis. Having read bits and pieces of Velvet Elvis, I can honestly say that I see where the gray area is, and how a misinterpretation of both Stoner and Bell could take place. My advice would be to explore both books for yourself. They're both easy reads and well worth your time. And while some may feel that Stoner's commentary of Bell's book is misplaced, at any rate, what he says is still very true in a general sense.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone looking for a new look at their faith, and a few good laughs along the way.
For Such a Time as This Apr 10, 2008
I believe that Timothy Stoner's book has been written "for such a time as this." As a true watchman on the wall, the author is discerning the times that we are now in. I believe that God has poised Timothy "at the gates" as He did Mordecai in Esther 4. Mordecai overheard the words of the enemy, Haman, and his plan to destroy God's people, the Jews. Mordecai went to the gates of the king and had this word of warning brought to Queen Esther describing the evil plan of Haman. Esther was unaware of the destructive plan that was being devised right within the gates of the king's domain in which she lived. This book serves as that warning.
A "new" hip teaching has emerged carrying with it a unique, somewhat open-ended flare that sounds a bit more exciting than an "exclusive," holy, jealous and passionate God. The vague deception has subtly found its way into unsuspecting hearts and minds of a generation.
Thank you, Timothy Stoner, for standing as Mordecai did and sending out this very clear warning of a deceptive plot to rob Jesus of the worship and glory that He alone deserves. Someone needed to articulate this message and you have done it very well. This book is important, profound, God-honoring and Christ exalting. Thank you for sharing honestly with your readers of your struggles and lessons learned, and also, for balancing out your critique of some of the emergent church's weaknesses with their critically important call to social justice.