'American Pharisee: Overcoming the Beliefs That Deceive' is a true story about the reality of suffering and the promise of redemption for those who chose to follow Christ in faith.
The American Dream of happiness, comfort, and success is constantly competing against the believer’s pursuit of Christ. Over time, the believer begins preferring the American Dream over God. Similar to the Pharisees in Jesus’ day, American Pharisees believe they are worshiping God, but in reality, they are worshiping with their words and not with their hearts. The end result is a person who experiences a distant relationship, or no relationship with God because they are more focused on living a pleasant life now instead of living for eternity.
Author Kevin Hover used to be an American Pharisee until he broke free from these misguided beliefs. But freedom always comes with a price, and that price is usually some sort of suffering. In the midst of his suffering, Kevin discovered that pursuing Christ is far more rewarding and fulfilling than pursuing the American Dream.
Are you experiencing a distant relationship with God? Could you be an American Pharisee? Maybe you have been deceived by your own beliefs.
Idea/Concept: This work offers an ambitious and intellectually stimulating concept, although the audience for the work may be somewhat limited.
Prose: The author writes smoothly and effectively, relaying his own experiences of grappling with the nature of his religious faith, while integrating biblical passages throughout.
Originality: This book is highly unusual in its concept and execution. The author approaches the work with the belief that the Pharisees, of old and today, "worshipped God's law instead of worshipping God." The author explores pertinent topics relating to faith, including clearly defined varieties of suffering, and encourages the faithful to continually pursue God and to reevaluate their faith.
Execution: The book is quite convincing, aiming to persuade readers to change their relationship to God and Jesus and to change their lives and their prayers accordingly. While not all readers will be in the position to emulate the author – or will prioritize their faith as strongly -- Hover's examples from his own life are moving and meaningful.
Date Submitted: December 30, 2019