Spiritual Intelligence

We’ve all heard of IQ, and you may heard of EQ, but have you ever heard of SQ? Probably not. Your intelligence quotient and your emotional quotient might measure how intellectually-smart or emotionally-smart you are, but Kris Valloton is proposing a third dimension of intelligence: a Spiritual Quotient. It may be surprising that a neurologist, not a pastor, is writing the forward to such a book. There’s an entire chapter dedicated to the “law of spiritual physics.”

More surprises: while this book is not a book on apologetics, it felt like it many times. On the bookshelf, if you’re a theologian, I would put this book next to Strobel’s A Case for Christ. For me, describing experiences of the divine or connecting to Christ and calling it “SQ” seemed to be a way to appeal to skeptics or seekers, or even a way to try to prove the point that science and faith do not have to be at war with one another; they can co-exist in peace, easily.

I would recommend that any pastor or seminary student, of any Christian denomination, read this book to better understand those you will serve who are science-minded. This book shows how having a strong Christian belief does not have to mean surrendering a belief in science. Your friends and family who love science will love this book. It lost me at times. Even though it does not get too deep with these concepts, this book is smart.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

If God is Good Faith and Suffering in the Midst of Evil

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If there is a God, why is there so much suffering in the world?

Wouldn’t a good, supreme being do something about the evil and pain in the world?

This question, or variations of it, is one of the oldest that humans have struggled with. It’s a tall order for anyone to sufficiently answer. However, Christian author Randy Alcorn has taken on the challenge in what is a lengthy, yet meaningful, contribution to apologetics in his new book If God is Good Faith in the Midst of Suffering and Evil.

In what is about 500 pages, Alcorn makes his case. His theology includes ideas on how a loving God can exist and not stop heinous crimes. Alcorn also theorizes why God doesn’t stop diseases, disabilities, car accidents, and other tragedies from inflicting pain on humanity.

I read Christian books often but I have never been so thoroughly challenged by a book since I was a college student. The material is dense and I did not understand – or agree with – all that Alcorn was saying. But, he frequently cites Scripture to back up his ideas and there were a few times that I had to check his claims against the Bible to see if he was correct. I was shocked to learn in a few instances that Alcorn was correct, and I learned some things about the Bible that I had never heard before.

If God is Good will not give an easy, comforting answer for suffering, nor will it calm the objections of atheists. However, for Christians seeking a thought-provoking book to shape their theology on suffering and evil, it is a well-structured, Scripturally sound reference book.

FTC Disclosure: I received a free copy of If God is Good from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.