Review: United: Captured by God’s Vision for Diversity

United: Captured by God's Vision for DiversityUnited: Captured by God’s Vision for Diversity by Trillia J. Newbell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I watched Trillia speaking to Thabiti Anyabwile in an author interview and decided I wanted to buy this book. Ms. Newbell impressed me with her bright Christian countenance and her thoughtful, personal approach to a difficult issue.

This book tells her personal story of inter-ethnic Christian friendship and church ministry, and it would be a good book to give to someone (perhaps especially a woman—simply because Trillia writes a lot about deep Christian friendships with other women) who needs to be initiated into the simple idea that if God wants people from every tongue, tribe, and nation to praise Him in the eschaton, why not now? And, importantly, why not together now?

However, and this is no criticism of the book, I would direct someone who already gets that idea and agrees with it to the greater theological substance of John Piper’s Bloodlines, which had a far bigger impact on me than this book because it was so richly scriptural. It’s not that Trillia’s writing is superficial; she just didn’t aim at lengthy scriptural exposition. Her aim seemed to be more autobiography-with-Scripture-proofs. That is valuable in itself; you just need to know what you’re getting going in.

Ms. Newbell placed an appendix in this book which I found to be equally as valuable as her own story. She transcribes an interview she did with Thabiti Anyabwile in which he discusses the faulty concept of “race.” He offers a short reading list on the issue which I’m excited to tackle.

I hope Ms. Newbell will not stop writing. I have a feeling there is more wisdom to be had from her, and I am thankful she put forth the effort to serve Christ’s body in this way.

Author: Mark Ward

PhD in NT; theological writer for Faithlife; former high school Bible textbook author for BJU Press; husband; father; ultimate frisbee player; member of the body of Christ.

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