My initial excitement over reading Brian Barcelona’s “The Jesus Club” dimmed quickly as I began to explore the contents.
Selling out completely for the gospel, giving up the pursuit of a career or education is admirable & requires a great deal of faith. Still, I struggled to believe the contents of this journey in its entirety. Did God call the disciples out, tell them to leave their homes and take no cloak? Absolutely. And so, I found myself frustrated.
As a former youth pastor, I’ve attended many great youth gatherings, but none where every. single. person. in the room stood to accept Christ. Is it possible? Yes. Likely? No. Compounding my disenfranchisement is the fact the “sinner’s prayer” is found nowhere in scripture.
Were the thousands of decisions for Christ as testified in Barcelona’s book actual life changing events, or merely momentary emotional responses? Where are these kids now? His journey began in 2009 meaning many of these students are now entering adulthood, embarking on careers and starting families of their own, so why haven’t we seen the decidedly liberal climate in California begin to shift?
While I personally did not love the sophomorically written book, I cannot completely discount Barcelona’s faith and passion for the lost.
*A complimentary copy of the book was provided in exchange for this review.