In a piece that reveals far more about the reviewer than it does about the resource, Simon Ward concludes that the course “cannot be recommended.”
He bemoans the teaching in which – horror of horrors! – “enquirers are encouraged to ‘Come to Jesus as you are… put your trust in him… put him in charge!’” He then complains that the actual terms “sin” and “repentance” aren’t used, failing to appreciate, a) that both concepts are thoroughly explored using appropriate synonyms, and b) John’s Gospel (on which the course is based) never uses the word “repentance” once. In the same breath he criticizes the use of a “sinners prayer” at the end of the course and makes an unsubstantiated broadside, claiming that “there is an absence of the free and sovereign grace of God in salvation.”
From these criticisms you’d think that Lee was Charles Finney himself rather than (I hope Lee won’t mind me saying) a conservative evangelical and thoroughly reformed thinker. He’s Scottish for goodness sakes – how much more sound does he need to be!
Given that the reviewer gives virtually no biographical information, I did a Google search and found only one relevant lead about his identity – a speaking engagement at a Strict and Particular Baptist Chapel. Those coming to hear Mr (Reverend?) Ward were encouraged to “Please bring AV Bibles and Gadsbys Hymns if possible.”
Culturally it seems that Mr Ward is coming from a very different place to a young evangelist reaching a new generation with a DVD resource. It would have been helpful if Mr Ward had declared his hand from the outset and revealed that he comes from a theology and practice of evangelism that is quite a bit different from both Lee McMunn and the majority of EN’s readership.
I for one would be fascinated to read Mr Ward’s approach to evangelism and might well find myself in agreement on certain issues. But those discussions should be kept away from the reviews so that Christians can get a clearer sight of the actual resources.