A Review Of Heath Lambert, “Finally Free: Fighting For Purity With The Power Of Grace” -- By: Godwin Sathianathan

Journal: Journal for Biblical Manhood and Womanhood
Volume: JBMW 18:2 (Fall 2013)
Article: A Review Of Heath Lambert, “Finally Free: Fighting For Purity With The Power Of Grace”
Author: Godwin Sathianathan

A Review Of Heath Lambert, “Finally Free: Fighting For Purity With The Power Of Grace”

Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2013. 176 pp. $14.99.

Godwin Sathianathan

Associate Pastor
South Shore Baptist Church
Hingham, MA

For six years I had the privilege of working with college students on Michigan State University’s campus. The topic of sexual temptation and pornography would inevitably come up as I counseled and discipled young men. I tried to provide the support that was needed. While I saw some fruits of repentance, more often than not I fumbled around with my counsel. I would boldly exhort hardened hearts toward holiness, with little mention of blood-bought grace. Or I’d remind the guilt-ridden of God’s lavish grace, without encouraging them toward practical change. My counsel was well-intentioned but sometimes ineffective. All the while I wondered: How do I connect the dots between gospel grace and the trench warfare of sexual temptation?

Enter Heath Lambert’s recent contribution, Finally Free: Fighting for Purity with the Power of Grace. This book is all about “the amazing power of Jesus Christ to free you from pornography” (12). The book begins with a foundational chapter on gospel grace, and then offers eight gospel-shaped strategies for killing sexual sin.

Theology is for the soul. Biblical exegesis is for life change. Lambert understands these truths well. Finally Free is thoroughly biblical and grounds its principles in careful exegesis. Lambert lets the Bible speak for itself. Every chapter digs into one or two biblical texts and pulls the reader into God’s vision for sexual health and holiness.

That vision begins with the cross of Christ. Christians know forgiveness comes from the Cross. But where do Christians get resources to fight sin? One of the most helpful emphases in this book is that blood-bought grace not only forgives but empowers. Through Christ, God provides resources to cover our shame and enable real change. “Grace isn’t just unmerited favor. Grace is power” (23). How heartening for those enslaved in sexual sin to believe this!

Embracing God’s forgiving and transforming grace is just the beginning. Thankfully, Lambert works from the assumption that killing sin, not just managing it, is possible and expected (see Rom 6:1-14; 8:13). The majority of the book is dedicated to exploring how the grace of the cross helps Christians put to death sexual sin.

Lambert contends that addressing the heart is essential in the fight for purity. He speaks about the critical role godly sorrow, t...

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