Book Review: The Plot To Kill God

The Plot To Kill God, by Edward F. Mrkvicka, Jr. with Kelly H. Mrkvicka

[Note: This book was provided free of charge by Outskirts Press in exchange for an honest review.]

In few cases of reading a book has there been such a drastic difference between reading the back cover text and reading the book itself. The back cover of this book begins as follows: “The War Between Good and Evil Is Almost at an End. Man Has this One Last Chance to Determine the Outcome. As we near the Second-Coming, the battle between good and evil intensifies. Sadly, the forces of evil are winning; mainly because too many Christians the churches they attend are going along to get along.” This text would seem to indicate that this work is highly dualistic in nature, with clearly heretical ideas about the equality of God and Satan. Reading such material before starting the book gave me a great deal of concern about its contents. It was to my considerable pleasure and relief when the book ended up being something entirely different, and more along the lines of what I expected to read about concerning a philosophically inclined book about God’s judgment on willful and persistent unbelief.

In terms of its contents, this is a short book that covers most of the points one would expect in a book promoting right-wing Christianity and the condemnation of immorality as well as the politics of the left. The book contains four chapters: the first talks about the character of God, the second focuses on abortion and homosexuality and the unwillingness of people to listen to God’s moral laws, the third looks at the application of the rules for radicals and how they are full of double standards and hypocrisy, and the fourth is a firing squad of favorite liberal targets. These four chapters make up an efficient book that runs about 120 pages–no padding for extra size here, just raw and fierce partisan politics for those who are so inclined. And, I should make it clear that this book does speak about horrors and does so passionately and accurately. The book, however, is a the combination of a particular type of Christianity with partisan politics that accounts for the dualistic tone of the back cover copy, which is a bit distressing even for some readers who may be fellow Republicans as well as passionate Christians.

There are two fundamental problems I have with the book’s approach. One is primarily tactical, and the other primarily theological. On a tactical level, this book errs by participating in a dialectic as the apologist for God’s justice as opposed to the leftist appeal to God’s mercy. There are several mistakes in this approach. One is that the best way to oppose a bias is not by counting that bias with an opposite bias in a satanic dialectic, but rather by showing the balanced truth, one that reflects justice and love, law and grace, and so on. It is the picture of the full balance that demonstrates most effectively how a given false worldview has gone astray, and rebukes it with a constructive alternative. Not only that, but choosing to be harsh and vindictive justice is the fastest road to unpopularity, since everyone who is not self-deceived, no matter how restrained they are, knows they are a sinner with dark struggles in dire need of God’s mercy. No one likes a killjoy who preaches harsh judgment and makes one wonder what dark sins they hide beneath a veneer of sanctimonious self-righteousness.

Even more pointedly, there is a serious theological problem here. The reason why the back cover strikes the reader as so obviously heretical is that dualism is the natural result of conflating one’s identity as a conservative Christian or a Republican with the fate of culture wars and political contests. Just because God is in control does not mean that life will be pleasant or enjoyable, or that His believers’ causes will be rewarded. God will still be in charge if horrible events come upon us individually or collectively. He will still be in charge if our civilization crumbles and our nation faces well-deserved judgment for injustice and immorality. He will still be in charge if we die horribly and alone, or if we are sold into slavery, or if we are vagabonds and exiles on the face of a bitter and harsh planet. Obviously, we would rather live happy and successful lives, but a writer who proclaims God’s harsh judgment, despite His love, needs to face the reality that this harsh judgment or refinement can come upon us as well, and most of us do not enjoy it when that happens. Why should we then relish the destruction of our enemies, when even God does not delight in the death of a sinner, but rather wishes for all to repent and be saved?

About nathanalbright

I'm a person with diverse interests who loves to read. If you want to know something about me, just ask.
This entry was posted in American History, Bible, Book Reviews, Christianity, History, Satan's House Divided and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Book Review: The Plot To Kill God

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