Does it matter if we have free will? Does it matter if Calvinism is true? And does what you think about it matter? No and Yes.
No, it doesn’t matter because God is who he is and does what he does regardless of what we think of him, just like the solar system keeping spinning around the sun even if we’re convinced it spins around the earth. Our opinions about God will not change God. But they can most certainly change us. And so yes, it does matter because the conversations about free will and Calvinism confront us with perhaps the only question that really matters: who is God?
This is a book about that question—a book about the Bible, black holes, love, sovereignty, hell, Romans 9, Jonathan Edwards, John Piper, C.S. Lewis, Karl Barth, and a little girl in a red coat. You’ve heard arguments, but here’s a story—my story, my journey in and out of Calvinism on a trip to the center of the universe.
“With this book, Austin Fischer brings fresh insights to a very old conversation with a perspective that is at times piercing, at times deeply personal, and always thoughtful and rooted in scripture. He invites readers to wrestle along with him with some tough questions–questions that, no matter where your theological journey takes you, are worth asking with this kind of humility and care.”
-Rachel Held-Evans, Author of Evolving in Monkey Town
”By sharing his own journey in and out of Calvinism, Fischer provides readers with an honest, interesting, insightful, and very compelling critique of the self-absorbed ‘black-hole God’ of Calvinism. With a disarmingly laid-back style, Fischer crafts a series of clear and astute arguments that demonstrate the unbiblical and irrational nature of each of the central claims of Calvinism. Just as importantly, however, Fischer helps readers discover the humble, other-oriented, self-sacrificial God revealed in Jesus Christ . . .”
-Greg Boyd, Princeton Theological Seminary
”Young, Restless, No Longer Reformed fills a gap in contemporary literature about Calvinism. Here is a young, dynamic, evangelical pastor, well-educated theologically, who discovered the fatal flaws in Calvinism and reluctantly shook it off. This is his story, including his well-articulated reasons for that transformation. I cannot recommend this book highly enough, especially to people interested in the ‘new Calvinism’ and why a biblically committed young Christian might bid it adieu.”
-Roger E. Olson, George W. Truett Theological Seminary, Baylor University
”This book tells Austin Fischer’s story, and I hope you read it, and I hope you get a bunch of friends to read it together. Talk about it and ask [the] question, . . . ”Is the Calvinist God the God we discover when we look into the face of Jesus, the incarnation of God?” Austin tells his answers to [this question] at the age many need to begin answering [that] question.”
-Scot McKnight, Northern Seminary