Amazing Grace by Steve Turner
by John Bradley
This is a well-written, easy-read, and yet informative book about an amazing song! …a work of history that reads like a good mystery novel! I couldn’t put it down until I’d read it from cover to cover. This book has everything…a great redemption story, both for the man, Newton–and his song, which didn’t really take off until someone put the perfect tune with it a hundred years later. Turner manages to present the context of Newton’s theology in a scholarly way that will be informative, but not off-putting to those who are not into theology. The secular life of the song is fascinating…to see how this song was popularized, largely through the pop scene in the US, and now touches millions. To me this song has what we want all music to have, a good tune and something that touches our insides in a way we can’t describe. And the biggest surprise of the book?…Newton became a slave-trader AFTER his conversion, and only opposed slavery much later in life. Considering how slowly America has been addressing its historic racism, there may be a lesson for us all as we see the sanctification that occurred over time in Newton’s life.