Fault Lines by Voddie T. Baucham Jr – A Review

“This book was hard to write. I knew that no matter how careful I was, how irenic, differential, or gracious, the very content of this book would be deemed offensive, unkind, and insensitive. Some will go so far as calling it ‘violence.’” – Voddie Baucham

In case you haven’t been paying attention, the Social Justice Movement, armed with its doctrines of Critical Theory and her children, Critical Race Theory, Critical Gender Theory, Conflict Theory and Intersectionality have been hot issues as of late. What you may not know is that these theories are not new but have been presented in the academy for at least 40 years, perhaps longer. In this book, Pastor Baucham not only explains what lies behind the Social Justice Movement and the doctrines and worldview that drives it, but he does so, in this reviewers opinion, in a way that leaves no honest individual able to deny the potency of his claims. Voddie T. Baucham,Jr. is a pastor and church planter, is the dean of the School of Divinity at African Christian University in Lusaka, Zambia, where he and his family have lived since 2015. Married more than 30 years, Voddie and his wife, Bridget, have nine children and two grandchildren and are committed home educators. (Bio taken from the back of Fault Lines: The Social Justice Movement and Evangelicalism’s Looming Catastrophe)

Right away Pastor Baucham starts with a history of Critical Theory and Intersectionality and its connections to Marx, the Frankfurt School, and several other Communist theories of social science. Those first few pages before the Introduction labeled “Thought Line” lay the backdrop for the entire book so if you’re in the habit of skipping prologues, don’t skip this one.

From the starter’s pistol, Baucham begins naming names of prominent Evangelical leaders, voices and organizations who have drank the proverbial woke kool-aid, not only breaking what he refers to as the “11th Commandment” but smashing it. If the 11th Commandment is “Thou shalt be nice” then naming names must be the unpardonable sin of the American Evangelical Church. I won’t drop those names in this review but instead will encourage you to buy the book and read it yourself, however, I don’t believe his intentions in revealing the names of these individuals and ministries were malicious being that I have followed Baucham’s ministry for several years now. I do believe that his purpose was to cite the use of Critical Race Theory/Intersectionality (CRT/I) among the brethren and how pervasive that it can be and the only way to do that is to cite examples rather than to vaguely bat at ghosts. Using evidence and sound argumentation is one thing that Baucham is known for.

The next 2 chapters are marked by Baucham first explaining his experience as a black man in America and next as a black Christian. This was a brilliant move on his part as Standpoint Epistemology as its commonly known as or “Ethnic Gnostocism” as Baucham has referred to it as for over a decade, is one of the main tactics used by the followers of this popular religion. Phrases like “You can’t speak to my situation because you’ve never been a (insert race/gender/sexual orientation here)!” are one of the most common arguments used to diffuse any argument against a minority person’s position regardless of whether or not it is rooted in logic or reason. Starting from this position, Baucham establishes that those points can’t work on him because he’s black, he was not raised Christian, he was raised by a single, Buddhist mother in South Central LA and despite all of the supposed disadvantages stacked against him, he still managed to grow up to be a successful man in America. The Left hates stories like his and Thomas Sowell and Larry Elder and Clarence Thomas and Herman Cain and Ben Carson and so many others that smash their narrative because according to those who bang the drum of CRT/I, if you’re black in America, you can’t be successful because racism is in our national DNA, there is much more to his story in these 2 chapters than I can fit in a brief review, all I can say is buy the book and read it.

The next 4 chapters compare justice according to the word of God and “social justice” according to the new Marxist religion of CRT/I. Eye opening. Baucham essentially argues that what many of us in the Evangelical Church have failed to realize as we approach this matter is that CRT/I is not merely an in-house debate or an argument of heterodoxy but in fact, it is a new religion that has corrupted the very nature of gospel. On page 67 of the book he states that “The new cult has created a new lexicon that has served as scaffolding to support what has become an entire body of divinity complete with its own cosmology (CT/CRT/I); original sin (racism); law (antiracism); gospel (racial reconciliation); martyrs (Saints Trayvon, Mike, George, Breonna, etc.); priests (oppressed minorities); means of atonement (reparations); new birth (wokeness); liturgy (lament); canon (Critical Social Justice social science); theologians (DiAngelo, Kendi, Brown, Crenshaw, MacIntosh, etc.); and catechism (“Say their names”).” Baucham masterfully peels back the curtain and reveals that what many Evangelicals are accepting out of a sense of guilt is nothing more than a false gospel that offers no redemption but only condemnation and bondage.

The last 5 chapters are dedicated to explaining the ramifications of this situation, the devastation that lies ahead for the Evangelical Church as a result of our toying with this serpent but also, how as always, our hope is never in our understanding, our programs, in government or in any other system created by men but always in our great God and King Jesus Christ. While there are no doubt rifts, chasms and splits bound to occur due to these fault lines, it is for those of us who truly love Jesus to remain in the truth, regardless of our race, ethnicity, sex/gender, financial situations, locality, or any other external force; we must stand firm in the faith always, be still and know that He is God. While this review is not exhaustive of every chapter, that’s not the kind of reviewer that I am. Whether I loved a book or hated it, I still encourage you to be the judge. I have no problem giving my opinion and I think it’s obvious that as one who has gleaned much from Pastor Baucham’s ministry over the years that I thoroughly enjoyed this book and highly recommend it, but you should pick up a copy and judge it yourself.

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