Love Matters More, by Jared Byas, a Review

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Fear about being wrong in our beliefs has crowded out the clear message of Jesus’ life and death—the unmistakable emphasis in the Bible and in thousands of years of church tradition—love matters more.

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Love Matters More cover

Jared Byas has written a fantastic and engaging treatise on the need for Augustine’s hermeneutic of love. I find this call a necessary voice in our current communication between church and culture. The book is equal parts funny, heartfelt, inspiring, and convicting.

It’s interesting that those who do believe we can access absolute truth almost always also believe they are the ones who possess it.

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Yeah, But . . .

There were a lot of times in the book when I wanted to respond to Jared with a, “Yeah, but . . . ” “Yeah, but that’s not consistent.” “Yeah, but that’s not what it means.” “Yeah, but I don’t want to!” “Yeah, buts” usually turn me off from a book and make me want to quit reading. But Jared’s heart comes through stronger than every “yeah, but” I can throw at him.

Anytime something or someone collides with me, I have to make it mean something and let it expand my view of the world. I have to take what’s given to me and ask two questions: (1) What did the author intend to mean? and (2) What does it mean to me?

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The Price of Love Mattering More

It’s evident that this was not an easy book for Jared to write because he had to live it first–and much of the living of it was painful. Some of that pain was from those who value being right more than love. The fact that Jared came through that pain holding firm to the ideal that love matters more says a lot about who he is.

Everything, and I mean everything, is a tool toward love. If anything takes the place of love, it’s an idol. It has taken Jesus’ place as the authority in your life.

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Love Matters More quote

Speaking the Truth in Love

In the end, I don’t know if I can ever get exactly where Jared is in his hermeneutic, but I’m glad he’s there, and I value what he’s written. In a world where civil discussion is all but extinct, the call to Christlike conversation is in great demand. I don’t think it matters that you agree with this book as much as it matters that you hear it.

As Richard Rohr says, “Yes, ‘the truth will set you free’ as Jesus says (John 8:32), but first it tends to make you miserable.”

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Love Matters More

Love Matters More gets four stars from me because I’m pretty stingy with five stars (maybe stars matter more). It’s a quick read at 224 pages.

If you’ve ever thought of Jared as Ed McMahon to Pete Enns’ Johnny Carson, this will surprise you. He’s probably more akin to Pete’s Jiminy Cricket.