**I received this book from InterVarsity Press (IVP) in exchange for an honest review. The following is my personal review of the book.**
Roger Olson’s The Mosaic of Christian Belief is an excellent example of an honest and orthodox overview of the main theological concepts within the Christian faith. This book would be an excellent read for anyone new to the faith, anyone wanting to learn more about what Christians believe and why, and those Christians that wish to deepen their faith and understanding of theology. Overall, I would recommend this book highly to anyone in these categories or others that I may not have mentioned.
Reading this book, I felt his generosity towards those who may not agree with this particular beliefs to be refreshing and fair. There are moments in the book where Olson discusses which of his “diverse” beliefs he most associates with and why, but it is never in an overly unbiased way. I also enjoyed, in particular, his thoughts on the holy spirit, which are unique to the revised second edition. His treatment of these debated topics is thorough, while at the same time keeping each concise — A difficult task for something as vast as Christian doctrine.
There were times when I was reading the “alternative” beliefs (those ideas Olson deems are outside of Christian orthodoxy) and questioned whether they were heretical or simply disagreeable to Olson. I think, in other readings and class discussion, I have found that Olson is pretty spot on with these claims.
Each of us take scripture and theology with a slightly subjective lens and read into it our own perspectives, which creates a bias towards certain beliefs. Olson, while carrying his personal bias, does an excellent job of giving an objective and thorough picture of many of the foundational Christian doctrines that are debated today.