“You are closer than you think to a life that’s not diminished any longer. A life of true freedom. A life that fully radiates God’s glory.”
There are some problems that will not leave. Some obstacles rear their ugly heads over and over again. It doesn’t matter what we do, what we change, what we pray; they are always there. You can call them stumbling blocks. You can call them whatever small, cutesy name you want, but the reality is anything but. These problems, they are giants. Demoralising, life-stomping giants standing in the way of you and the life that you want.
To hope and say “one day, my giant will be slain” is to still leave you in the clutches of fear and despair. To say that “my giant was defeated in the past” sets us up feeling like the giant wasn’t really dead, or perhaps we somehow, accidentally, resurrected it. To speak of the giant’s demise in the past or future leaves us with strange and conflicting ideas. Because the truth is, the giant is dead. He must fall down. It can and will stay down.
In his latest book, Louie Giglio shows how we can live in this “now and not yet” victory. We are not stuck living with a giant hounding us day and night. We are not beat or destroyed by some violent oppressor that will not go away. Quite the opposite really.
We are victors. We can live free from the giants that hound us. Not in the past, not in the future, but now. The giants, called by name, have met their end. Goliath MUST Fall. Fear, Rejection, Addiction must fall, for they are defeated. Anger, and even Comfort, these giants too, do not have the reigning power of us. Now we need to live like it.
Goliath Must Fall tells us how we can live in this “now and not yet” victory as Louie Giglio shares a new spin on the classic David and Goliath story. With new personal stories and that iconic Giglio style, Goliath MUST Fall is the book that every Christian needs to read if they want to live out from the shadow and rule of a giant.
“We are not the David in the story of David and Goliath.”
I can’t say that Giglio’s revelation that “the whole of Scripture points not to our abilities, but to Jesus as Savior of the world (23)” is something new, but I can say that it is great to seem more and more preachers and teachers grabbing hold of this and sharing it. The story is not about us, or us conquering or defeating Goliath. It is, and always should be, about Jesus.
Every chapter, every giant that Giglio talks about is ultimately defeated already by Christ. What Giglio shares in his iconic style are how we should live in that truth. Because the giants are defeated, but still deadly. We cannot walk around in ignorance, Giglio makes that abundantly clear. Fear, rejection, addiction, anger, and even comfort are all destructive forces in our lives that are ripped of their power in Jesus, but they are still venomous. In telling a childhood story, Giglio compares these giants to venomous snakes that he killed. They were destroyed, but that didn’t mean that he could walk barefoot on their teeth. The venom would still hurt him, regardless of how defeated the snake was.
Most people won’t think that these five giants are the only ones that we face. Surely, there are more problems, larger than life issues that we deal with. But Giglio has wisely broken down each giant and illustrates how every major issue we face does fit into one of those five categories.
Each giant is given a chapter, explaining how this giant appears in our lives. With each explanation comes a story about how each of these giants has affected Giglio’s own life, punching the message with personality and relate-ability: everyone faces these giants, in one way or another, at some point in your life.
While Giglio does make connections and share how we can win the battle against our giants, this book isn’t without a problem.
I have no problem with Giglio’s assertion that anger is a giant that doesn’t have power over us. This is overwhelmingly true, and more people need to realise that and live in that. Anger is not a default emotion that you have to fall into. It is something that we feel, but still, it is only a feeling. We can, and should, have control over our feelings.
Giglio sticks with the David and Goliath story for imagery and states there are five smooth stones of truth that we need to remember and live out if we are going to see the giant of anger destroyed. While he is right in all but one, that one is troublesome.
The title is innocent enough, “We remind ourselves we aren’t perfect to begin with”, and theologically correct. We can be hurt. We can feel anger. But then Giglio shifts to the idea that someone has already been hurt and angry with us, and that Person is God. What follows is a discourse of how God is wrathful, alongside his love, and he has every right to feel this way. The implication is that God has dealt out his wrath before, or is currently, or will soon.
God’s judgment is long discussed in scripture. There is no refuting that God will avenge and make right the wrongs (Giglio mentions that as another of the five smooth stones of truth). But he places God’s wrath beside God’s love as if the two were the primary characteristics of God. God is love, and God is wrath.
To make this more confusing, Giglio makes a statement that undermines, then silently explodes, destroying any coherent train of thought about God and his wrath. “Really, God’s ‘wrath’ just means that he exists (155).” Is God’s wrath proof he exists? Is God in a perpetual state of wrath? While at the same time always loving? If wrath is just another word for existing, then wrath has no meaning when discussing anger either.
While this may seem to be a major blight on Goliath MUST Fall, it is only one problem in an otherwise fantastic book. Even in the other five smooth stones of truth, this was the only problematic one I found.
Louie Giglio does what he is known for, and does best: he preaches. He takes the truth of Scripture, shows people Jesus, and encourages them to run to Christ in worship. That still rings true of Goliath Must Fall. With Giglio’s emphasise from the start that we are not the David in this story, that we are a defeated, traumatised Israel needing saving from the giant(s), the focus is put on Christ the Victor. Yes, there are things that we can do to live like our giants are defeated, but it is not us that took each one done.
“…we need to immerse ourselves in that awesome reality. Jesus died one time – for all time…the work of defeating death and all hell’s power is finished. Completed. Done. Accomplished.”
While you may not have an issue with Giglio’s anger chapter as I did, I think most readers will agree that Goliath MUST Fall is fantastic. A Louie Giglio presentation, through and through, this books speaks to the modern Christian and the issues that each of them faces. The giants in all of our lives must come down, and Giglio is helping people struggling with fear, rejection, addiction, anger, and comfort see those Goliaths defeated through Jesus Christ.
I would have to give Louie Giglio’s Goliath MUST Fall at 4 out of 5-star rating.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <http://booklookbloggers.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html