Grace Callaway Biography & Facts
What's So Amazing About Grace? is a 1997 book by Philip Yancey, an American journalist and editor-at-large for Christianity Today. The book examines grace in Christianity, contending that people crave grace and that it is central to the gospel, but that many local churches ignore grace and instead seek to exterminate immorality. What's So Amazing About Grace? includes Bible stories, anecdotes from Yancey's life, accounts of historical events and other stories. These include a modern retelling of the Parable of the Prodigal Son, an account of Yancey's friendship with Mel White who came out as homosexual, a comparison of the teachings of early Christians Pelagius and Augustine of Hippo, and a summary of Karen Blixen's short story "Babette's Feast".
Yancey was inspired to write What's So Amazing About Grace? after President Bill Clinton asked him, "Why do Christians hate so much?" Although Yancey initially intended to call the book What's So Amazing About Grace: and Why Don't Christians Show More of It?, Zondervan, its publisher, objected to this title despite the author's contention that he wrote the book to communicate the belief that grace is one of the best quality Christians, like himself, have to offer but are not necessarily identified with it. The book was successful at secular and Christian stores, selling more than 15 million copies by 2006 and becoming Yancey's best-known book. In it, Yancey coined the phrase "scandal of grace", referring to the idea that God forgives some of the worst people, citing the conversion of Paul the Apostle.
What's So Amazing About Grace? was named Book of the Year by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association in 1998. In 2006, it ranked 17th on Christianity Today's list of fifty books that have shaped Evangelicals the most. In a Publishers Weekly review, Henry Carrigan notes an anecdotal style that can be frustrating but ultimately worth reading. For the Presbyterian Record, Canadian Christian writer Phil Callaway writes that he found the book refreshing and inspirational. What's So Amazing About Grace? has been endorsed by a number of public figures, including Irish musician Bono, British adventurer Debra Searle, and World Vision Australia CEO Tim Costello.
Philip Yancey, an American journalist based in Colorado, was inspired to write a book about grace in Christianity when he went to the White House to interview President Bill Clinton. Clinton, a Southern Baptist from birth, told him, "I've been in politics long enough to expect criticism and hostility. But I was unprepared for the hatred I get from Christians. Why do Christians hate so much?" Yancey later said that, although there are many reasons for Evangelical Christians to disapprove of Clinton's policies and lifestyle, hating him was not a valid option for Christians.The author was further prompted to write about grace when a friend told him about encountering a homeless prostitute in Chicago who began to cry as she told him that she had raised money for drugs by prostituting her two-year-old child. When Yancey's friend asked the woman if she had sought help at a local church, she answered, "Church? Why would I ever go there? I was already feeling terrible about myself. They'd just make me feel worse." This story convinced Yancey that Christians are doing a poor job of communicating the message that God is willing to accept people, regardless of what they have done; the story haunted him, he said, because the woman was "the type of person who would have gone to Jesus. The more unrighteous a person was, the more comfortable they felt around Jesus".Yancey researched the subject of grace, asking non-Christians what they associated with Evangelical Christianity. None of their responses mentioned grace; most cited political stances, such as opposition to LGBT rights and abortion. The author initially intended to call his book What's So Amazing About Grace: and Why Don't Christians Show More of It? Zondervan, its eventual publisher, objected to the title's forcefulness, despite Yancey's argument that he wrote the book about how "we Christians are simply not known by the greatest gift we have". On February 3, 1997, Christianity Today published an essay by Yancey, the magazine's editor-at-large, with the title "A State of Ungrace", saying that it was the basis of two chapters of Yancey's upcoming book with the working title of What's So Amazing About Grace and Why the World Needs More of It. The book was published later that year with the shorter title What's So Amazing About Grace?
According to the author, he began writing the book in the same way he began most of his books: by exploring a question that was unresolved for him. In this case, the question became the book's title. In What's So Amazing About Grace?, Yancey answers this question by writing that God gives grace to people unconditionally, without their need to earn it. His book includes Bible stories, anecdotes from Yancey's life and accounts of historical events. Similar to his other works, What's So Amazing About Grace? has a self-deprecating tone. It describes Yancey's upbringing in a judgmental church, a theme Yancey previously explored in The Jesus I Never Knew and later returned to in Reaching for the Invisible God and Soul Survivor.What's So Amazing About Grace? sold well at secular and Christian stores. Its popularity in the United Kingdom grew in 2003, when the impending Iraq War boosted sales of religious literature in the country. That March, it was the seventh-bestselling religious book in the UK, behind Rick Warren's The Purpose Driven Life, John Ortberg's If You Want to Walk on Water, You've Got to Get Out of the Boat and Eugene H. Peterson's The Message. What's So Amazing About Grace? is Yancey's best-known book, having sold more than 15 million copies by 2006. Initially, the book was especially popular among baby boomers. Its popularity helped increase sales of Yancey's 2000 book Reaching for the Invisible God, which appeared on religion bestseller lists immediately after publication. What's So Amazing About Grace? is one of several books by Yancey that have become international bestsellers.
In What's So Amazing About Grace?, Yancey discusses grace, calling it "our last best word". The book's thesis is that, although people crave grace and it is centrally important to the gospel, many local churches ignore grace in their quest to exterminate immorality. Yancey uses the word "ungrace" to describe actions that fail to demonstrate grace. According to the author, the greatest gift the Christian Church can give the world is grace, but the church sometimes offers ungrace instead. Yancey writes that there are secular analogues to most Christian activities benefiting the world, such as social justice work and community service, but that "grace is theological; it comes from God. It's one thing the church can offer that isn't found anywhere else". He describes his experiences att.... Discover the Grace Callaway popular books. Find the top 100 most popular Grace Callaway books.