We often think we can pin God with a certain theological system; for example, Calvinism. We interpret Scripture, the world around us, and even God’s actions in our lives based on what we have been taught. Yet, our own imagined, discerned systems cannot fully comprehend God because God shows up in all the wrong (and, of course, right) places.
“God Is Stranger” is an addicting book. I had trouble putting it down once I picked it up. The stories and biblical applications are convicting; reassuring and riveting. Kandish deals with the dark, twisted, and “downright awkward” stories of the Bible that are not a part of the “treasure chest” for memory. For instance, when Adam and Eve sinned against God by taking a bite of the apple, God became one of holy judgment against creation as opposed to their once close friend. What are Christians to make of this when we often tell young ones that God is the only true “friend” you need in this world? What are we telling non-believers when we have not seriously engaged with this story (and others!) that depict God in a less-than-favorable light? We tell them we have avoided these stories. We neglect these young ones by not telling them there are parts of the Bible which make us uncomfortable. That is something else this book does: brings this underlying uncomfortableness to the surface. Soon, what you thought had been long suppressed is welling up from inside the depths of your soul.
Some of these chapters which have a high probability of making you squirm in your seat cover “Adam and the stranger”, “Abraham and the stranger”, “Ezekiel and the stranger”, “Jesus and the stranger”, and “You and the stranger.” My personal favorite chapters, and in my opinion the most convicting were the latter two in my list; Jesus, you, and the stranger. These chapters remind me of the constant need to be on the watch to be the hands and feet of Jesus to those around me, especially those who are different from me.
I hope you will get this book. It is absolutely fantastic and I have no doubt you will be convicted, challenged, and encouraged.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from InterVarsity Press. The opinions I have expressed are my own, and a positive review was not required. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.