• Disappointment with God

  • By: Philip Yancey
  • Narrated by: Jay Charles
  • Length: 7 hrs and 32 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (273 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Best-selling author Philip Yancey tackles questions Christians often wonder but seldom ask aloud. In his illuminating exploration, he uncovers true, real, and lasting hope in the midst of your darkness that will produce an even stronger faith than you had before.

Do you feel like you've been let down by God? Abandoned by the one who was supposed to come to your rescue when you needed it most?

You've come to the right place. Philip Yancey has a gift for articulating and answering some of the most honest, complex issues of faith. In Disappointment with God, Yancey poses three questions that Christians wonder, but rarely feel permission to voice:

  • If God is so hungry for relationship with us, why does he seem so distant?
  • If God cares for us, why do bad things happen?
  • If God's promises are true, why do they feel so far off from personal experience?

With clarity, honesty, and biblical assurance, this insightful and deeply personal book shows you the light in the midst of darkness - the hope that God offers right in the middle of life's disappointments. Yancey points you beyond the cynicism that is often bred in hardship to a stronger, wiser faith, a confidence in God's deep love, and a thirst to reach not just for what God gives, but for who God is.

Spanish edition also available.

©1988 Philip Yancey (P)2008 Zondervan

What listeners say about Disappointment with God

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

On the defensive

The premise of this book is that Richard, young acquaintance of Yancey's, lost his faith in the process of completing a degree at a Christian college-- prompting Yancey to embark on a two-week silent retreat in which he reads the Bible from cover to cover, attempting to find a response to Richard's questions.

What results is a fairly traditional set of theodicies (attempts to explain the apparent co-existence of God and of evil). There are many such theodices floating around. In Disappointment With God, Yancey posits three of them:

1. If God were more inclined to intervence in the world and to perform miracles, we would actually be less inclined toward faith-- we would gripe and be dissatisfied, as were the ancient Hebrews wandering in the desert with their pillar-of-fire God.

2. Things may SEEM to be going horribly for us, but God has a greater plan, just as was the case for Job. Everything will eventually work out for the best.

3. It may seem possible to explain the events of the world without God, but such a view is reductionistic, somewhat like characterizing a symphony in terms of its sound waves. (This discussion moves somewhat away from the Problem of Pain)

That these (or any) theodices are problematic has been discussed at length elsewhere, and there is no space to do so here. To Yancey's credit, he at least writes with empathy and with a reluctance to blame either the victim, or anyone else, for the existence of pain. I also sense that he is opening these questions to a community for whom they are taboo.


However, I dare say that Yancey ultimately fails to answer Richard's questions. His explanations for the Problem of Pain lead us to some rather terrible conclusions, in short, that for God, the end justifies the means and also the idea that to have faith un-bolstered by miracles is "worth" the sacrifice of human lives.

For a more interesting consideration of "God's point of view", I would recommend "God: A Biography" by Jack Miles.

8 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Be
  • 04-01-13

Good content

What did you love best about Disappointment with God?

The book is honest and tries to deal with this very hard question truthfully. It's given me some answers and I'm satisfied with them.

What other book might you compare Disappointment with God to and why?

I haven't read any other books on this topic but what I liked about it is that Yancey did not try to 'convince' people about the reality of God, but dealt with this question honestly, giving his own 'doubtful' experience.

What does Jay Charles bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He is a good reader but I guess his accent is difficult for me sometimes.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

No.

Any additional comments?

Good book overall. I was inspired by it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Yancey at his best. Extremely upliftting.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes. You will reconsider your times of doubt.

What other book might you compare Disappointment with God to and why?

Lee Strobel's

Have you listened to any of Jay Charles’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but this was very good.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It changed me and took many doubts in God away.

Any additional comments?

For any Christian who experienced disappointments and sometimes feel that God is silent in times of his/her crisis. This is highly recommended.

1 person found this helpful

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Classic Book Excellently Read

This is a great narration of this classic book. For anyone who has ever wondered, "Why doesn't God just..." or "Where was God when..." this is a must-listen. The reader conveys the book's meaning well.

1 person found this helpful

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Dissappointed with this book

This book is a clear representation of the overwhelming Bible illiteracy within Christian community. The disappointment is because of a flawed view of God; a God man has constructed in his mind. God does not perform for nor conform to man's expectation. God is sovereign, period.

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Seminary Entrance Requirement

This is certainly one of my favorite books. I have read through it with my hard back copy along with Audible (Jay Charles) frequently and often stopping along the way to study and colorfully underline certain parts almost like memorizing parts of the book as I do my Bible which is my very favorite book. I’ve also listened, without my book, to parts of it while driving or just sitting at home probably more than a dozen times. I absolutely love this book and my living through it so many times would not have been possible without Jay Charles. I’m almost inclined to believe he actually wrote it; that Jay Charles is a pseudonym for Phillip Yancey since he reads it with such clarity and conviction in certain places pausing and pronouncing with such expression drawing me in as with the sound of a siren. But in a good way. I’ve listened to other books I’ve loved to read but the narrators were not nearly as good.

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Men’s Bible study

My men’s Bible study went through this book this past year, 2021, chapter by chapter. This book helped many of us understand disappointments we have in life in our’s spiritual walk and relationships. Highly recommend this book!

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Hard to Follow

narration was excellent.
Very extensive Biblical text reading, recitation. Not what I expected. Was hoping for more interpretation to practical application.

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Spoke to my Soul

This book spoke to me in the midst of a season of silence from God. It helped grow and shape my perspective in a loving God who truly is concerned with me and in me despite my seasons of questions.

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Guess who moved?

Philip Yancey writes with so much dedication and love and brings God to life as our eternal friend desiring a relationship. I encourage everyone struggling with faith to listen, register and listen again to this book. You will surely be changed!