The End of the Pilgrimage: Your Judgment Seat Verdict and How It Determines Your Place in His Kingdom. By James S. Hollandsworth. NP: Holly Publishing, 2015. 167 pp. Paper, $12.99.
James Hollandsworth is Pastor of Tri-City Baptist Church in Forest City, NC. The back cover of The End of Your Pilgrimage indicates that “He is burdened to equip saints to reign with Christ.” JOTGES readers would surely be moved to consider this book both because of that statement and because of the title and subtitle of the book.
There are fifteen chapters. The chapters are not arranged in terms of logical connections. Rather, each chapter discusses an aspect of rewards theology. Those aspects include kingdoms in conflict (1), the difference between justification and sanctification (2), the nature of the salvation of the soul (3), the conditionality of ruling with Christ (4-6), judgment for sin (7), the New Jerusalem (8), wedding garments (9), the outer darkness (10), the last shall be first (11), the process of spiritual growth (12), rewards for overcomers (13-14), and a kingdom mindset (15).
While JOTGES readers might quibble here and there over minor points (e.g., the outer darkness as some actual place in Christ’s kingdom, pp. 101-113), they will find much to like in this book. While there is not much new information here that is not found in other rewards book by other Free Grace authors, the style is different and engaging. Those who’ve read Grace in Eclipse, Going for the Gold, A Life God Rewards, or The Road to Reward would surely find this a helpful addition to their library.
A Christian author tips off his emphases by how often he quotes various passages. That is certainly true with Hollandsworth. Here are some of the passages that he cites and discusses the most, with the number of pages on which he discusses a given passage put in parenthesis: 1 Cor 3:13-15 (x8), Matt 16:24-28 (x8), Rom 8:17 (x6), Heb 12:28-29 (x6), 2 Cor 5:10 (x5), Gal 2:20 (x5), 1 John 2:28 (x4), Rom 12:1 (x3), Gal 5:19-21 (x3), 2 Tim 2:12 (x3), and 2 John 8 (x3).
The author shows that the Bema will be more than an awards ceremony. He often mentions possible negative consequences at the Bema (e.g., pp. 37-39, 54-65, 70, 101-113, 118-23, 142-43).
The King James Version is the translation that Hollandsworth uses in this book.
I recommend this book. It is a strong presentation of the Free Grace understanding of eternal rewards.
Robert N. Wilkin
Journal of the Grace Evangelical Society