The Reformation's Conflict with Rome: Why it Must Continue!,
by Robert L. Reymond, Mentor, 2001, 155pp.
As the old saying goes, ‘You shouldn't judge a book by its cover'. And as far as this volume is concerned, the hoary cliche holds good. I mean, take a good look at the cover, ignoring the words for a moment. For starters it's purple, which alternates with pink as my teenage daughter's favourite colour. Then did you notice the little diamond motif? Everyone knows that diamonds are a girl's best friend. Taken together these two features might suggest that what we have here is a fine specimen of chick lit. But that ain't the case. Reymond is a bloke and his offering isn't about knitting, ponies or romance. So, you can't judge this book by its purple, diamondy cover. But you can judge it by it's subtitle, The Reformation's Conflict with Rome: Why it must Continue! Did you get that? It's not The Reformation's Conflict... What was all that About? or Why it was a bad thing and should Stop! Oh no, unlike some Evengelicals, Robert Reymond wants the conflict to continue. 'Why on earth is that?' You might ask. I'm not telling you.
Seeing as this is ostensibly a book review, you might expect me to attempt to summarise Reymond's monograph and offer an appraisal of his efforts. But, no. I'm not even going to use the review as an excuse to dilate on the subject in hand with some thoughts of my own. Not this time. What I'm going to do is list the kind of people who should give serious attention to this book. So, here goes:
If you think that the Reformation's conflict with Rome is is about as relevant today as a mobile phone that doesn't take photos, then you should read this book.
If you think that the difference between the Reformers and Rome on justification by faith alone or justification by faith plus works is of little consequence to sinners in the light of the day of judgement, then you should read this book.
If you think that it doesn't matter that Rome elevates its traditions and the 'infallible' declarations of the pope to the same level as Scripture, then you should read this book.
If you think that recent Protestant attempts at rapprochement with Rome like Evangelicals and Catholics Together are a jolly good idea, then you should read this book.
If you think that the Reformation's alone's are not needed to preserve the integrity of the gospel against Rome's and's then toll lege, take and read.
Even if you are none of the above, this monograph will help you to see with fresh eyes the momentous difference between Rome and authentic biblical Christianity. Your vision of the gospel of free grace will be clarified and enhanced. You too should read this book.
The trouble is, having said all that, the book is sadly out of print. You won't get a copy from the publisher, but Amazon.co.uk has one left in stock and some new copies are available from the Amazon Marketplace. Failing that, you'll have to make do with a diseased secondhand copy. I mean, have you never sneezed while reading? Be brave. Even if you can only get a scabby used copy, take the risk and read this refreshingly honest account of the Reformation's Conflict with Rome: Why it must Continue!