In a time when we tend to accuse everyone who disagrees with us of heretical doctrine, Justin S. Holcomb’s Know the Heretics is a refreshing look at what heresy truly is. As he reminds us, even though some of the people that we disagree with may be wrong in our eyes on certain doctrines, through the lens of scripture, there are only so many doctrines that are essential to a saving belief in Jesus Christ.
However, some of the doctrines that have arose over the centuries are truly heretical in terms of what the essentials of the Christian faith are. Holcomb’s book examines these heresies. First, he defines the belief of the heresy. Then, he takes the heresy and gives a simple scriptural rebuttal. Finally, he takes the heresy and explains why it’s relevant to know and be aware of this heresy as a modern Christian. Holcomb also provides study questions and further resources in case you’re using this book in group discussions or are just interested in checking out more information.
This is a very valuable little book. It’s also a great companion to Know the Creeds and Councils. As my main complaint about reading the creeds and councils book was that Holcomb didn’t use any scriptural references to back up his arguments, this was a great volume to go in and see some of the scriptures that he was referencing and how they were misinterpreted by heretics. I also totally agree with his principal argument about heresy. What is a heresy isn’t determined by popularity. It is determined by scripture. This is a great little volume to read and perfect for for those who are wanting a closer, gentle introduction to church history.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book courtesy of Zondervan. I was not required to write a positive review.