Blogger Tim Challies has a new book out, The Discipline of Spiritual Discernment, that deserves your attention. A lot of bloggers out there claim to be defending the faith against all sorts of modern-day heretics, but what the rest of us see are angry, mean-spirited, hypercritical legalists who can’t pass the most basic test of Christian faith: “By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:35 NAS)
To promote the book, Mssr. Challies is “appearing” on various blogs, where he answers a question in true talk-show fashion. And Justin Taylor of Between Two Worlds asked a great question: “As the World’s Most Famous Canadian Reformed Blogger, you seek to practice discernment as you critically engage culture and review books. Having now extensively studied the concept of biblical discernment, I wonder what implications you think this has for ‘discernment blogging’? In part, I’m thinking of ‘watchdog’ blogs and bloggers that have ‘discernment’ as their primary focus. Speaking generally, what are they doing right, and where do they need correction?”
Challies’ response begins with refreshing candor: “One of the questions I was forced to ask as I wrote a book on discernment was this one: ‘Why are so many discerning people so mean?’ If you go looking on the Internet for discernment ministries or discernment blogs, you’ll quickly realize this is exactly the case. There are many people out there who, to borrow a phrase from one of my favorite bloggers, ‘give discernment a bad name.’ Many, and perhaps most, of the people who emphasize discernment do so in a way that seems entirely lacking in grace.”
To read the rest of Challies’ reply, click here.