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December 25, 2013


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How Moralism Suffocates Grace
Samuel C. Williamson

Is Sunday School Destroying Our Kids? How Moralism Suffocates Grace
  • Paperback: 102 pages
  • Publisher: Beliefs of the Heart Press (December 9, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1941024009
  • ISBN-13: 978-1941024003

(from Goodreads)
In this collection of pithy and thought-provoking writings, Sam Williamson shows why being saved by grace isn’t enough: we need—indeed we long—to live by it.
Several years ago I met with a woman distraught over her son’s rejection of Christianity.
She said, “I did everything I could to raise him right. I taught him to be like the ‘heroes of faith,’ with the faithfulness of Abraham, the goodness of Joseph, the pure heart of David, and the obedience of Esther.”
She wondered why he had rejected Christianity.
I wondered why it took him so long.
—From the book

People often reject Christianity simply because they can’t distinguish it from mere morality. The world needs morality—oppression thrives when consciences are abandoned—but we need more than that alone. We need the gospel of grace. A gospel that has largely been lost amid the dos and don’ts and preoccupations of religious culture.

People often pit grace against moralism. And they should. Moralism circumvents heart-changed morality. We need moral men and women, but moralism damages the foundation of heart-change. While it’s okay to pit grace against moralism, let’s not pit grace against morality. Grace is the source of real morality, and grace—thank God!—breaks the bars of moralism that imprison us.

Is Sunday School Destroying Our Kids exposes moralism for its false pretensions—the sham that it is—and it moves our hearts to believe the gospel, for the first, or the hundred-and-first, time.


I found parts of the book that went right to the core.  I believe that grace comes from the things you see and the way you are raised.  Not that a person cannot change as they get older but those informative years are sometimes hard to change.  I agree that a person needs grace in their lives in order to be at peace and to learn how to deal with people and the world in general. Grace comes from the heart. I believe that morality is very important.  If your morals are in the sewer then where is your grace.  I think grace is learned.  I don't believe that learning about the Bible and God's love is something that should be drilled into a person.  I was raised going to Sunday School,  church, twice on Sunday and once mid week.  I was in the choir and did all the events that went with church.  I've strived all my life to try my best to have that grace towards others.  I've found that I've fallen at times.  It's extremely hard to show grace again and again to people that know not what grace is and don't want to know. I believe a little church and Sunday school doesn't hurt anyone but I believe that the final decision on what you believe lies with the person.  Will they continue going to church or will they find God at home in their living rooms?  Grace is needed but so is morality.  Without one you don't have the other.   The author wrote a very thought  provoking book.  It makes you reflect a little.    I believe the world is scared and desperately looking for someone or something to save them. The problem is they don't want to change.  They go about their lives, a lot of the  time, thinking only of their own personal gain.  There's no grace in that.  There's no morality in that. Grace and Morality have all but been lost with the changing world we live in.  If you can keep grace in your heart then you are one of the few.  We all need to believe that there is a higher being out there, that loves us and forgives us.  I just think it's a personal decision on what you believe.  It can't be crammed down a person's throat.  Grace should step in once more. But does it?

I would give this book 3 HEARTS.

I was given a complimentary copy of this book from the author for my honest opinion.



Samuel C. WilliamsonSam Williamson is the son of a pastor, the grandson of missionaries, a speaker, a writer, and--he hopes--a thought-provocateur. He studied European intellectual history at the University of Michigan.

Finding no jobs in European intellectual history, he spent twenty-five years in the mundane business of business, the last two decades as an executive and owner of a software company.

After his twenty-five year stint in business, he felt called to ministry. He founded Beliefs of the Heart. Its mission is to help us examine the unexplored convictions that drive us. Why do we do what we do? What unseen forces motivate us? What is going on beneath the surface?

Sam and his wife, Carla, live in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and have four grown children and an ever increasing number of grandchildren. In his free time he loves sailing, skiing, and scuba diving.

He writes a weekly article on his blog, 


1 comment:

Samuel Williamson said...

Hi Gayle,

I am the author of the book you reviewed, and I'm honored and intrigued by the issues you raise.

I love your reviews because they pull no punches. You raise great questions, like "The problem is they don't want to change. They go about their lives, a lot of the time, thinking only of their own personal gain."

Thanks for your review,