"The Myth of Certainty" by Daniel Taylor encourages the reflective Christian, the one whose faith is such that he is willing to ask the hard questions. Like C. S. Lewis', "A Grief Observed," Taylor is free to acknowledge sometimes he has doubts in the midst of his faith. This paradox, says Taylor, is an indication of great faith, and through this questioning, the Christian can become strong, and more capable of serving God. The reflective Christian, with a tested faith, has a more honest witness.
To start the book, Taylor asks 16 questions. Reader of Mark Noll's "The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind," will resonate with many of them, like #4, "Have you ever felt intellectually embarrassed to admit you were a Christian?"
Taylor is a literary man, citing writers as far ranging as Hopkins, Eliot, Pascal, and even Lenny Bruce ("People are leaving churches and returning to God"). I suspect his intention was to broaden and challenge readers who might be in accord with the quote, but not the one quoted.
He introduces Alex Adamson, a fictitious man who exists to establish anecdotes and parables quite effectively. As Luci Shaw is quoted in a back cover blurb, "I recognize myself on every page." Alex struggles with existentialism, moral choices, and all kinds of philosophical dilemmas common to our modern generation.
Taylor is critical of both liberal Christianity's allowal of the secular world to determine their agenda, and of conservative Christianity's too often denial of free thinking. Also, the secular world, he contends, only allows Christianity so long as it doesn't affect your judgments. He dashes off no easy answers, but enters into a compelling dialogue with the reader.
Taylor's message in "The Myth of Certainty," is like Mark Twain's in "The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg" that our personal and corporate faith as a Christian needs to be challenged, that it must be reflective, and never arrogantly complacent, lest it be built on sandy soil. The risk of asking -- even as a mature Christian believer -- "What is Truth?" is far less than the risk of ignoring the depth found in discovering truth.
I fully recommend this as both personal reading, and in a small group book study context.