Manning, a popular writer and speaker, is considered by many to
be a kind of expert on the topic of God's grace. Philip Yancey,
editor for Christianity Today magazine, says "Brennan Manning
[is] my spiritual director in the school of grace." On the back
cover of Manning's book, Ragamuffin Gospel, Max Lucado
states: "Brennan does a masterful job of blowing the dust off
of shop-worn theology and allowing God's grace to do what only
God's grace can do - amaze." Few Christians would argue that we
need God's grace, and in fact it is only through that grace that
we can even approach God. Scripture is clear about this:
then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the
heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.
For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our
weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without
sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that
we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews
Yungen, author and research analyst, says of Manning:
appeal is easy to understand when one hears Manning in person.
His manner is very genuine and down-home. Many admire him for
his passionate and dynamic character. When he relates how his
mother mistreated him as a young child you cannot help but feel
his pain deeply. (A
Time of Departing, 2nd ed., p. 82)
adds, "However, despite all his admirable qualities and devotional
intensity, he teaches contemplative prayer as a way to God" (p.
82). And here lies the problem. When we understand the premise
of contemplative, we realize that it is impossible to promote
both grace and contemplative at the same time. Grace and contemplative
are on opposite sides of the pole. They completely contradict
each other. John Caddock, in his excellent article, "What
is Contemplative Spirituality and Why is it So Dangerous?"
discusses this ragamuffin view of grace: Click
here to read the rest of this article.