SAVED BY FAITH AND HOSPITALITY. By Joshua W. Jipp. Foreword by Christine D. Pohl. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company. Xiii + 206 pages.
Sola Fide! The declaration that we are saved by faith alone has been one of the hallmarks of the Protestant tradition. There has long been an aversion to “works righteousness,” but this too often has led to what Bonhoeffer called “cheap grace.” Perhaps, in our time, there is a need to reclaim a fuller biblical vision of salvation, one that is not merely individualistic, but that engages all of life, here on this planet. So, perhaps we would be well-served to speak of being saved by faith and “hospitality.” Such is the premise of Joshua Jipp’s profound and prophetic book.
Hospitality is a central theme in the biblical story, for good and for ill. Abraham and Sarah were commended for showing hospitality to the three strangers at the Oaks of Mamre, while the peole of Sodom and Gomorrah became known for their violent response to the strangers who came to their own community. Jesus' own ministry was defined by his Table Fellowship. Even when he was a guest, he became host. It was in the breaking of bread at Emmaus that the two disciples recognized him. Paul gave instructions to the church of Corinth so that they might show proper hospitality to all members, no matter their social class or gender. In Saved by Faith and Hospitality, Joshua Jipp, a New Testament scholar who teaches at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, speaks to this core theme, shedding light upon it in a powerful way. Thus, he has written an inspiring treatise for the church in our times.