Every Christian struggles with sin and wants to be victorious in the fight.
Higher life theology—also known as Keswick theology—offers a quick fix for this struggle. It teaches that there are two categories of Christians: those who are merely saved and those who have really surrendered to Christ—or those who have Jesus as their Savior alone and those who have him as their Master as well. If Christians can simply “let go and let God” they can be free of struggling with sin and brought to that higher level of spiritual life. What could be wrong with that?
A lot, it turns out. In No Quick Fix, a shorter and more accessible version of his book Let Go and Let God?, Andy Naselli critiques higher life theology from a biblical perspective. He shows that it leads not to freedom, but to frustration, because it promises something it has no power to deliver. Along the way, he tells the story of where higher life theology came from, describes its characteristics, and compares it to what the Bible really says about how we overcome sin and become more like Christ.
This book packs an extraordinary amount of useful summary, critical analysis, and pastoral reflection into short compass. The book will do the most good, however, if it encourages readers in a more faithful way to pursue that holiness without which we will not see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14).
—D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; President and cofounder, The Gospel Coalition
Andy Naselli provides us with a thorough explanation of Keswick theology and uncovers its biblical and theological weaknesses. Naselli’s work is judicious but kind. The Keswick movement has done much good, and we are allies and friends in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Still, iron sharpens iron, and Keswick theology has too often produced discouragement and despair with its exalted and finally unbiblical view of sanctification. Naselli’s work helps us to see why Keswick doesn’t measure up, and he provides a more satisfying and biblically faithful alternative.
–Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation, Professor of Biblical Theology, and Associate Dean of the School of Theology, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Andy’s work on Keswick theology is first-rate. This is a model of scholarship serving the church. His analysis of Keswick's history and his tight theological work on sanctification are extremely valuable. I enjoyed this book. I learned from this book. I will be able to help my congregation as a result of reading this book.
—Kevin DeYoung, Senior Pastor of University Reformed Church (East Lansing, MI)
“Rather, the flesh is the Christian’s sinful disposition, and the Christian and the Spirit progressively mortify its sinful deeds.” (Page 80)
“The essence of the higher Christian life is separating justification from sanctification” (Page 12)
“Packer is right: ‘The Christian’s motto should not be ‘Let go and let God’ but ‘Trust God and get going!’ ’23” (Page 83)
“So letting the word of Christ dwell in you richly is a way to let the Spirit strongly influence you. That is a lifelong process.” (Page 65)
“it incorrectly understands the flesh to be an equally powerful nature alongside the believer’s new nature” (Page 79)