I have recently had the honor of participating in the launch team for Dr. Voddie Baucham’s new book, Fault Lines. Being a part of the launch team, I was able to access a copy of his book before the public release date for the purpose of helping review it. Here is my short review.
“Fault lines, where most earthquakes occur, are cracks in the earth’s surface where tectonic plates meet and slide past each other. Usually, they are moving too slowly for us to notice, but when stress builds up, they’ll suddenly slip, causing an earthquake.”Dr. Voddie Baucham, Fault Lines
On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. boldly proclaimed, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
Fast forward to Boston University on March 19, 2019 and Robin DiAngelo, one of the leading proponents of critical race theory and social justice and author of White Fragility (you may recall hearing about DiAngelo giving Coca-Cola employees lessons on “How to be less white,” among other things), “explained how white people who see people as individuals, rather than by their skin color, are in fact, ‘dangerous.’ Meaning that it took only half a century for Martin Luther King’s vision to be exactly inverted” (Madness of Crowds, pg. 173)
By this standard, Martin Luther King Jr., himself, would be dangerous… and his “dream” that for so many years served as a beacon of societal ideals for our nation, well…. Repulsive.
DiAngelo is advocating for a belief system that looks at the world through the lens of race, gender, sexual orientation, and more. She is not alone in this endeavor, but is among the ranks of many who are now calling for a revolution that not only usurps Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream, but is also in opposition to a Biblical worldview and a common-sense understanding of the world.
Racism exists; Injustice exists. But does this new version of justice being peddled by DiAngelo and the Social Justice Movement 1) Accurately identify and diagnose the true issue(s) and 2) Provide a just and healthy solution?
The Fault Lines
Amidst all this derangement and confusion is where Fault Lines by Dr. Voddie Baucham comes in. In an attempt to help Christians understand and grapple with the deranged and confusing dogmas of the moment, Voddie identifies what he calls the “fault lines” in the evangelical realm. On one side of the fault are those standing for Biblical sufficiency and justice, and on the other side are those heralding the social justice movement, along with its ideologies (critical theory, critical race theory, “antiracism”, and intersectionality).
Fault Lines is a book primarily addressed to evangelical Christians. Consequently, there are many times throughout the book in which Voddie addresses the words and writings of mainstream evangelical pastors, teachers, and leaders–as so many are being led astray, and their followers are never far behind them.
However, acting counter to our culture of incessant canceling, Voddie does not “cancel” them, but rather firmly and lovingly points out where they’ve strayed from a Biblical worldview and have allowed–in many cases–for the sufficiency of Scripture to be slowly eroded. He does this with sincere love and hope for a return to a Biblically faithful view of justice.
The Social Justice Movement as a Worldview
Dr. Voddie Baucham confronts and handles the social justice movement and all the ideologies that it encompasses (critical theory, critical race theory, “antiracism”, and intersectionality) succinctly, concisely, logically, and most importantly, Biblically. Voddie then attempts (I believe, quite effectively) to argue that these ideologies operate not as analytical tools or helpful guides, but as worldviews that are antithetical to a Biblical worldview.
Furthermore, these worldviews pose a grave threat to evangelicals and the whole of our society because they are rooted in Marxism and a postmodern worldview that perpetuates division, hatred, and vengeance with no real solution for reconciliation, restoration and unity. They are incompatible with the Gospel, deny the sufficiency of the Word of God, and fail to provide us with a logically consistent, sound, accurate and unified explanation for the whole of life.
The Way Forward
Dr. Baucham concludes with what he calls “The way forward.” It is the way to true racial and ethnic reconciliation, fulfillment, joy, justice, peace, hope, forgiveness, and salvation.
This “way forward” is the Gospel. The Gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection acknowledges that all men and women dehumanize others; All elevate themselves and act out of selfishness and for self-advancement; All hearts are “deceitful above all things, and desperately sick” (Jeremiah 17:9) apart from Christ.
“This is not the state of white men,” writes Voddie, “It is the state of all men.”
However, whereas the world exchanges hatred for hatred, murder for murder… The Gospel (the good news of Jesus Christ’s coming, death, and resurrection) provides forgiveness and hope.
“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14).
The Bible tells us that “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8) and that “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13). This is the Gospel (the good news):
All–regardless of your ethnicity or your skin color, no matter whether you’re black, white, red or yellow–but all who put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ, repent of their sins and rebellion against God, will be saved. This is the path to true restoration of a broken, tainted world; This is the path to salvation.
We can celebrate the fact that God’s restoration plan for mankind involves people of every ethnicity, tribe, and nation:
“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’ And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, saying, ‘Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen.’” (Revelation 7:9-12)
I recommend this book for three primary reasons: 1) That you would be able to better understand and discern our times from a Biblical worldview 2) That you could actively participate in equipping other Christians to do the same, and 3) That you might better understand the difference between social justice and Biblical justice and therefore have a more clear understanding of the Gospel and its implications.
As Paul writes in Colossians 2:8, “See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.”
For all of these reasons and more, I highly encourage you to read Dr. Voddie Baucham’s book, Fault Lines which you can order here.