Book Review: Don’t Call it a Comeback

The worst thing about Kevin DeYoung’s newest book Don’t Call it a Comeback is the title. Why was it called, “Don’t Call It a Comeback?”  I figure it would become apparent to me as I read through the book but still have yet to see how it fits.

Ok, on to the interior of the book.  Should you read the book?  Yes. Should you own the book?  Yes (to read and lend out).  Will you love the book? I think so.

When I was reading this book at the Credo House and people asked what it’s about my typical response would be:

It’s a book by a whole bunch of authors, edited by Kevin DeYoung.  Half of the book focuses on Christian orthodoxy (right belief) and the second half focuses on Christian orthopraxy (right action).

For many people this wouldn’t sound like an exciting book you’ve gotta go out and buy.  Then the second question would come, sometimes comprised of only a glance conveying if it could possibly be worth their time to read.  Why do I think this book, stacked against the thousands of books you could read, is worthy of your time?

My response:

If I were to start doing a study with someone.  Maybe a mentor-type situation with a person in their teens, twenties or thirties this is one of possibly 3 books right now I’d consider reading with them.  The chapters are very short so you aren’t requiring a lot of the person you’re going through the book with.  The first eight chapters cover doctrinal matters in an engaging way.  In the journey of discipleship you need to cover the essential doctrines of the faith.  There were only a couple times where I felt the book lagged in this doctrinal section.  The final eight chapters walk through key issues where Christians, especially younger Christians, need to have a firm understanding.  200 years ago a chapter on gender confusion would be absurd.  Today it is crucial.   The final eight chapters wisely discuss life issues such as homosexuality, social justice and abortion. It’s a fun, informative, and heart stirring book to read with a friend.


11 Responses to “Book Review: Don’t Call it a Comeback”

  1. It’s a line from a fairly well known 80’s rap song– “Don’t call it a comeback, I’ve been here for years.”

    In the song, the rapper is saying that it’s not as if he faded into obscurity and that this song/record album is his comeback, but rather that he’s been around making music for years.

    Similarly, the author/editor/publisher is saying that this so-called “old faith” (the “new Calvinism”) isn’t some new trend, but that it’s always been around.

    You’re welcome.

  2. What if you don’t have any friends?

  3. What are the other 2 books you would recommend for this mentor-type situation?

  4. Michael, are you saying Tim is friendless or are you bemoaning your own situation? LOL j/k of course

  5. Ron,

    Thanks for the clarification. So what you’re saying is that for people to really understand the title they need to be familiar with a 1980’s rap song. Much of their target audience, however, were being born in the 80’s…not listening to rap.

    Anyway, I poke fun at the title…fortunately the adage is true, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover.”


  6. Mr. Patton,

    If you’d like I’ll be your friend and read through the book with you.


  7. Dr. Michael,

    One is Mere Christianity. I’ve successfully used this book in the past in a similar situation. I skip the first chapter, I find it’s too cerebral for most people and can set a bad tone for the book. It brings up excellent doctrinal discussion and still leads people into great orthopraxy-type conversations. His two chapters on sexual immorality are golden for people in their 20’s growing up in an age of sexting, etc…

    The other one right now that I’d like to read in a mentor situation is Crazy Love by Francis Chan. This book isn’t as clearly orthodoxy/orthopraxy as DeYoung’s but it will generate great Christian discussion. I think the three books together would be great for a beginning level of discipleship.


  8. I love this book as well, and I am only about halfway through it. The essays are well-written and clearly thought through, and I have learned a lot (even though I thought I already knew a lot!).

    Ron, thanks for the explanation of the title. I was also confused about it.


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