Readers will immediately sense this is intricate material, and Lafaut is upfront about the difficulty in mastering such a multilayered topic, writing that “knowing what humility is does not mean we are practicing it.” He uses the parable of the prodigal son to illustrate how pride can block love, and draws from it the lesson of the need to stop judging others in the name of religion. He also emphasizes that pride is based on outward appearances and control, whereas humility should be the pursuit of mutual respect and empathy. Lafaut argues that Jesus is the ultimate model of humility, urging readers to forgive others and avoid violence, in order to “[build] bridges on common ground.”
Although the text can be challenging, Christian readers will appreciate Lafaut’s reverence for biblical writing: he examines several beatitudes as they relate to humility—particularly the need to extend mercy to others and be willing to give freely—and dedicates plenty of space to clarifying the concept of salvation. Most importantly, he offers readers hope while normalizing the process of change, declaring that “all people have different degrees of humility.” Hands-on learners will appreciate the included quiz that measures their motives behind loving others.
Takeaway: An elaborate analysis of how to achieve humility, based on Christian principles and biblical writing.
Great for fans of: Robert D. Jones’s Pursuing Peace, Gregg R. Allison’s 50 Core Truths of the Christian Faith.
Design and typography: B
Marketing copy: B
Rene Lafaut shares his views on Christianity in Contrasting Humility and Pride: Bearing Good Fruit or Bad Fruit. He presents being humble and doing good as only being based on the power of Jesus Christ, which comes from abiding in His Word. Lafaut rejects the Penal Substitution Theory of redemption. In his view, Jesus was not punished for the sins of mankind, but His death was an act of love from the Father. Victory over sin does not come through keeping rules but from abiding in the True Vine, Jesus Christ. Throughout this book, Rene dwells on the fact that Christians need to abide in Christ and allow the victory over sin to come from this relationship. Some of the ideas in this book may seem new and strange to the reader, but the way they are presented is thought-provoking.
How does one become humble? If you strive to keep all the laws and do good things, will you be humble? Humility is not something people can truly achieve on their own. It is only attainable by abiding in Christ and letting Him control our lives. This is also true of all the fruit of the Spirit. We do not live the Christian life by striving in our own strength but by abiding in Christ. Rene Lafaut does not just accept the thoughts of others. He wants to know how things relate through his searching and researching. Rene presents the results of his study of Christianity and the Bible in Contrasting Humility and Pride. He concludes that only as one abides in Christ will one be able to live a Godly life. Read this book with an open mind and come to your own conclusions.