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Sarah Young. Photo: Publisher.

Presbyterian Church in America debates appropriateness of popular “Jesus Calling” book

The Presbyterian Church in America is debating the influence of the book “Jesus Calling” by the late Sarah Young. Commissioners at the PCA General Assembly voted to approve Overture 33, which called on two denominational agencies to investigate the book.

The amended overture called on the Committee on Discipleship Ministries to make a report assessing the book’s appropriateness for Christians in general and to “outline its reasons for withdrawing the book from its inventory previously and not offering it for sale since.” Additionally, the amended overture called on Mission to the World, a PCA missions ministry, to investigate the ministry group’s relationship with the book and consider actions that it and the General Assembly should take in light of this study of the book and of the agency’s relationship to it.

Jerid Krulish, a teaching elder from Faith Presbyterian Church of Anchorage, Alaska, spoke against the overture, claiming it was “a fishing expedition” that was “a waste of the committees’ times.” “This book is a book that, as far as I can tell, no one in the PCA reads,” he said. “Ninety-nine-point-nine percent of us had no idea that Sarah Young was even a member of the PCA. It is not in use in the PCA; it is not published by any agency of the PCA.”

However, Teaching Elder Chuck Williams of the Christ the King Chapel in Wesley Chapel, Fla., argued that the book had had “destructive effects” on a church group of which he formerly was a part. “This book defies the sufficiency of scripture very clearly,” he said. “Scripture gives us much warning about people claiming to speak from God when they are not called.”

Some critics have expressed concern about the mystical nature of the devotional and how it could mislead people into believe they received divine revelation.

“The biggest problem with `Jesus Calling’ is very simple: Jesus did not speak these words,” Christian author Randy Alcorn said. “If it’s not (and it isn’t) on an inspired and trustworthy level like scripture itself, then it’s making a false claim. In fact, regardless of whether it’s biblically sound, it’s an entire book built on falsehood.”

–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice


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