RED LIKE BLOOD: Confrontations with Grace – Joe Coffee and Bob Bevington (2011)

I got more than I bargained for when I set out to read Red Like Blood.  And I got less than what I bargained for.  I anticipated atonement themes; cross-centered reflections on the person and work of Christ. I looked forward to warm-hearted, theologically informed writing that gloried in blood of Christ that cleanses people from their sin.

But I was in for a big surprise.  This is not high-brow theology.  This is not a Martyn Lloyd-Jones exposition.  Rather, Joe Coffey and Bob Bevington write in a simple, earthy fashion – perhaps a bit too earthy for some.  But they tell it like it is and they’re quick to reveal the gory details.

Red Like Blood is about real life; life that is painful and filled with disappointment.  Coffey and Bevington write from different perspectives,  however both men are familiar with pain.  Both men understand loss.  Most important, they both understand grace.  Bevington adds, “… We’ve both learned that the brokenness God allows is always merciful and purposeful – because it’s designed to move our soul to a destination where we become more dependent on God alone.”  So God’s grace not only proves to be purposeful – it is powerful and effective.

Red Like Blood is a powerful book that highlights the grace of God in sinful creatures.  It should not be confused with a deep theological treatise – however it is a much-needed reminder to sinners; it is a vivid reminder that sinners are in desperate need of grace.  I guess I got more than I bargained for after all!

4 stars

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