It is very seldom that you can find such profound truth explained so thoroughly in such a small book. However, that is what I have found in Joshua Harris’s new book, Humble Orthodoxy. Joshua takes a look at the importance of adhering to orthodoxy for us as followers of Christ. His ultimate idea is summed in this statement found on page 5, “truth matters…but so does our attitude. This is what I mean by humble orthodoxy: we must care deeply about truth, and we must also defend and share this truth with compassion and humility.” How true are these words? With our current cultural landscape being one where you find either those who are arrogantly boastful of their command of knowledge in orthodoxy, or the exact opposite where you find those who are nearly heretical in their unorthodoxy, a book like this is vitally important.
I love the fact that this book is so accessible. It is short enough that you can read it in and hour or so, but it is practical enough that you can take what you learn and immediately apply it. It was very thoughtful in its approach to pointing out the fact that our attitude is a huge part of the way that we teach, correct, and inform others in orthodoxy. It is very easy to fall into the trap of becoming overly critical of those who disagree with “your” orthodoxy. It is so true when Joshua writes on page 26, “if being right becomes more important to us that worshiping God – then our theology is not really about God anymore. It’s about us.” This is an integral idea of the entire piece. Humble orthodoxy is all about Jesus, and really has nothing to do with us.
Harris ends the book with a challenge. What are you going to do when your orthodoxy comes into question? He writes on page 61, “We must be humble even as we contend for the truth and seem to be losing. God hasn’t commanded us to win. He has told us to trust him and do as he has taught.” It is difficult sometimes to keep this mindset when you are so ardently passionate about the truths of God, but God doesn’t need us to fight the battles for him. Overall, Humble Orthodoxy is a great book. I would highly recommend it for those who are ministry leaders and those who are sitting in the pews from week to week. It is good for every Christian to understand how to defend our faith in a way that draws people to our Savior, not offend and push them away.