Is This a Christian Book?

I just finished reading John Grisham’s latest novel, The Guardians.  Like his other books, this one is a bestseller and a commercial success.  I would maintain that it is also a Christian novel, and it will influence many like the leaven in the bread( see The Rub.)

If you do some research on John Grisham, you will find that he is a Christian and makes no secret of his beliefs.  The protagonist in The Guardians is also a Christian.  Cullen Post was once a lawyer, quit the law to follow his calling to become an Episcopal priest, and currently works for Guardian Ministries, an organization dedicated to exonerating prisoners who have been unjustly imprisoned.  It’s not full of biblical references, miracles or deep theology.  It does portray an individual Christian, living out his faith quietly in an authentic way.

Cullen works for a pittance of what he could earn as a lawyer, or even as a minister.  In the eyes of the world, he would be seen as foolish.  Yet, he reminds me of the apostle Paul, content with whatever he has.  He rubs shoulders with all kinds of people — lawyers and judges, ex-cons and liars, rich and poor.  He is able to identify and interact with each one by using his own experiences.  He doesn’t judge and he follows his calling to:

Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body”  Hebrews 13:3

This novel mentions prayer in a positive way, and guess what — no bad language!  Proving that we really don’t need that stuff to write a successful book that will appeal to all kinds of people.  (You may remember this is one of my pet peeves Joan’s Pet Peeve).

Maybe some will feel that Grisham sells out, because his novels don’t constantly remind you that they are Christian.  Personally, I think the best kind of Christian book is one that appeals to many and guides them toward Christ.  Who knows, some may read The Guardians and ask, what makes somebody give up their life to save others?  I hope so.  I give it 5 stars.




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