Pastor Larry DeBruyn’s Review of Love Wins

I’ve spent the last thirty or so minutes reading Pastor Larry DeBruyn’s review of Rob Bell’s Universalism promoting book, “Love Wins.”  I’ve linked to it below.  As usual, I’m posting a small snippet, but you can read the rest of it after the jump.

The Quantum Spirituality of Rob Bell: A review of “Love Wins”

Rob Bell, Love Wins: A Book about Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived (New York, NY: Harper One, 2011) xi + 198 pages, Acknowledgments and Further Reading. The back cover blurb first states and then incredulously asks: “God loves us. God offers us everlasting life by grace, freely, through no merit on our part. Unless you do not respond the right way. Then God will torture you forever. In hell.” Huh?

Recommended by a who’s who of emergent leaders, Rob Bell’s book Love Wins has, as it is calculated to do, stirred-up controversy. Recently, Time ran a front cover story on it.[1] Eugene H. Peterson lauds the book as being born out of a “thoroughly biblical imagination,” and a book “without a trace of soft sentimentality and without compromising an inch of evangelical conviction in its proclamation of the good news that is most truly for all.” (Front Cover Flap). Open theist Greg Boyd calls the book, “bold, prophetic, and a poetic masterpiece.” (Back Cover Flap). Andy Crouch sees Bell as “a central figure for his generation.” (Back Cover).

To read the rest of this review, please click here.

7 thoughts on “Pastor Larry DeBruyn’s Review of Love Wins

  1. Javanut

    A most thorough review. I especially noted that after Bell took a cursory skim of Scripture to make a point – the point fails miserably upon examination of the context – such as the illustration of “rocks everywhere”.

    Thank you for sharing the review with us!

  2. Darrel

    Thank you, Pastor Larry. A very precise, to the point dismantling of the vain and deceitful philosophy of an apostate. Doubtless there were many questions in your mind that could have been brought forth and posed to Mr. Bell. Such as: if all are to be “saved” anyway, what need is there for us to “be good”? or to love our fellow man? or to seek after God? or to pray to Him who loves us no matter what we do on earth? or to consider Jesus Christ being little more than just a man who’s death was meaningless?

    Bell never considered Jesus Christ as God in human flesh (I John 4:1-3). The fact of His virgin birth is excluded. And most important of all His resurrection from the dead is missing from Bell’s thoughts and writings.

    The sloppy, soupy, sentimental “love” of the god that Bell has created is no doubt his best effort. I will not disgrace the real Love that our Father has shown to us in Jesus Christ by attempting to compare the one to the Other.

    If there is universal salvation for all, would not God be rightly accused of being partial, unfair and unjust if the same courtesy were not afforded Satan and all the fallen angels? If Bell’s ideas are true, then where is vengence against sin and wickedness? and God does not (by Bell’s standards) have the right to judge His people. So we can rip Hebrews 10:30 from our Bibles and not be bothered by impending doom. While your’re at it, delete v. 31, no more need to be in fear of a non-vengeful, non-judging, and non-lethal god (may as well delete Luke 12:4&5 also).

    So the whole point of Bell’s latest (and really all) work is to bring questions, doubts, and lies about the real character of the God of creation and redemption. For those genuinely born again and yet are shaken by Bell’s words may I suggest that your read the Word of God more often. The Book of John is a great place to start. When you’ve finished reading John, then read it again. When you’ve finished the second time, read it again. You will slowly begin to understand, to put the pieces together, and more will become real to you. Just because you’ve heard or read John 3:16 four million times do not run through as though there is nothing else to be learned from it. The Holy Spirit WILL guide you into all truth and He WILL testify of Jesus (John 16:13 & 15:26)


    It’s sad to think that despite so many Christians writing warnings about Bell, there are some Christians who still venture to go where Bell goes and have no sense of discernment at all. Thank you posting this.

  4. Kiwi Dave

    That was a really great review from Pastor Larry DeBruyn, and right on the button! Even though these verses are referring to the Jews, the same afct appiles, that we as people must choose of our own free will to serve God:

    “Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD. And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:14 & 15 KJV

    This is also better explained in this quote of C.S. Lewis from that review:

    C.S. Lewis wrote of hell:

    “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.’ All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell.”

  5. Doug

    Another way to look at this is that God is working to make the ‘fakes’ obvious to true Christians. He gives us discernment, which helps us to know which ones are true-who is teaching sound doctrine. There’s a reason why Spurgeon still resonates with us a hundred years removed from his preaching. There’s a reason why “THEY” still cling to the teachings of the Rob Bells, the Creflo Dollars. I was once told by a friend that Sid Roth is a scripturally pure Christian. Nope.

  6. Carolyn

    I think the parable that best describes Rob Bell’s “everyone gets into the Kingdom” fallacy, from Christ’s point of view, is the parable about the wedding clothes.

    8 “Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding banquet is ready, but those I invited did not deserve to come. 9 So go to the street corners and invite to the banquet anyone you find.’ 10 So the servants went out into the streets and gathered all the people they could find, the bad as well as the good, and the wedding hall was filled with guests.
    11 “But when the king came in to see the guests, he noticed a man there who was not wearing wedding clothes. 12 He asked, ‘How did you get in here without wedding clothes, friend?’ The man was speechless.
    13 “Then the king told the attendants, ‘Tie him hand and foot, and throw him outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

    In relating this parable, which is representative of those who try to get into the kingdom without the “wedding garments” Christ is clearly saying that those that try to come to the wedding without them, will be thrown out. No arguing. All the arguing that Rob Bell and the Emergents have done against Christ’s exclusivity will be silenced. They will be rendered speechless as this man was.

    Also noteworthy, is that if we are not in Christ, our pass to the wedding is null and void. We can be different in many non essential points of belief but the one thing that is essential and nonnegotiable is that we come in Christ’s righteousness, not our own.

    Galatians 3:26-28
    26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

  7. Darrel

    To believe Bell or even consider that his statements in “Love wins” have merit one must also call Jesus Christ a liar.

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