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Extravagant Grace: God's Glory Displayed in Our Weakness
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Extravagant Grace: God's Glory Displayed in Our Weakness

4.24  ·  Rating Details  ·  405 Ratings  ·  76 Reviews
Why do Christians, even "mature" Christians, still sin so often? Why doesn't God set us free? We seem to notice more sin in our lives all the time, and we wonder if our progress is a constant disappointment to God. Where is the joy and peace we read about in the Bible? Speaking from her own struggles, Barbara Duguid turns to the writings of John Newton to teach us a theolo ...more
Paperback, 237 pages
Published September 20th 2013 by P&R Publishing (first published August 1st 2013)
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Josh Skinner
Aug 31, 2013 Josh Skinner rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is a book that is hard to read. At least it was for me. And, I am not saying “hard to read” in the manner of, “I just don't understand what she is saying!” No, I understood perfectly throughout. Mrs. Duguid is a brilliant writer. She conveys her points beautifully and clearly and leaves no worldly obstacles to overcome in understanding what she is saying. Her writing is fun and fluid and filled with humor, heaviness, and heart.

But it is hard to read. The content she covers is shocking. She
Aug 17, 2016 Jeremy rated it it was ok
See here for some comments on the "Contemporary Grace Movement" (comments made by Rick Phillips, the senior pastor at my parents' church in Greenville, SC). The reminder that God's grace is greater than our sin, even persistent sin, is a good one, and because of this important emphasis in the book, I did not ultimately give it only one star. Unfortunately, frequently the book seems to mock the idea of striving, or working, or pressing towards holiness. That mockery is dangerous, and Rick is righ ...more
Sep 01, 2014 Bookish rated it it was ok
I had really high hopes for this book, and I really want to love it. In the end, though, there were too many little details that unsettled me. This book had huge potential, but in my opinion, it missed the mark.

From the beginning, I found Barbara Duguid's personal story compelling. I really appreciated that she was so willing to be open and transparent with her own struggles with temptation and sin. That is a huge connector between people, to know that we are not the only ones struggling...and f
Julie Biles
Nov 23, 2013 Julie Biles rated it it was amazing
Why would Barbara Duguid write a book about the gospel that was so drenched in transparency, honesty and vulnerability? Why would she expose her own sinful tendencies with such candid, fearless abandon? There is only one reason, that we, the readers, might be forced to look at our own depravity and see not only our desperate need for a Savior, but that once we ARE rescued, we are wrapped up in the righteousness of Christ alone and when the Father looks at us, He sees only His Son and He is pleas ...more
Dec 22, 2014 Jkanz rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014
I picked up Extravagant Grace: God's Glory Displayed in Our Weakness (2013) on the recommendation of a friend who tweeted, "OK, so I didn't put together a Best Books of 2013 list, but if I had, this would have topped it." I received an Amazon gift card for Christmas and included this book as a part of my order.

Unlike my friend, I did put together a best books of 2013 list, BUT if I had read Extravagant Grace, this would also have topped my list. To me, this book was simply remarkable. Strongly
Sep 18, 2015 Loraena rated it really liked it
I highly recommend this book to all my Christian friends. Stylistically it does not deserve 5 stars (according to my personal rating system), but in theology & general helpfulness it absolutely does.

Mrs. Duguid is a presbyterian liturgical planner, biblical counselor, and pastor's wife. She and writes very openly and vulnerably with us about her personal struggles. I have heard her speak and was incredibly blessed by her personal testimony and lifelong study of the life and writings of John
Jan 19, 2014 Kate rated it it was amazing
Barbara Duguid's blend of theology and personal stories makes for fascinating, transforming reading. This book examines the ways in which the author's view of sanctification has changed over the course of her life. Barbara reveals moments in her life that beautifully illustrate her developing view of God's work in the life of the believer, not only through obedience and traditional methods of "spiritual formation," but perhaps more profoundly in the sin which leaves her realizing her dependence ...more
Bambi Moore
Jul 24, 2015 Bambi Moore rated it liked it
This book had some fantastic chapters and I was brought to tears at times at the author's beautiful descriptions of God's grace. I also loved her explanation of God's sovereignty in sin, and her transparency of personal sin habits was helpful and refreshing. I underlined a lot in this book, especially the first half, and read some chapters twice over, so probing and thought provoking was the message. However, I cannot shake several concerns and frustrating points where the author seems to slide ...more
Amy Kannel
Well. If the measure of a book is how much it makes you think, how much underlining and starring and scribbling in the margins you do...then this is five stars for sure. It took me six months to get through it because I felt I needed to answer the questions at the end of each chapter, and consider the arguments carefully.

I found so much of this to be rich and helpful. But reading it was also angst-producing, because never before have I read a book that simultaneously resonated so deeply with my
Nov 14, 2014 Sam rated it it was ok
While this book does have several good points, the glaring problems ruining it for me. In my opinion, the problems with this book are most clearly illustrated in chapter 10. Here the author discusses a situation where she is struggling to forgive another person who has sinned against her. OK, I'm tracking along. However, the author then moves into a conclusion how she has learned to have compassion on herself. In other words, she is struggling in her sin (OK, I'm with you), she knows what is rig ...more
Jul 11, 2014 Stephanie rated it did not like it
Shelves: christian-life, 2014
This book has serious problems.

Here is a much more eloquent review than I could ever drum up, with which I wholeheartedly agree. I hope that anyone who thought this book was amazing will take into consideration:

Duguid's purpose for writing the book is noble, and with this review I mean her no disrespect. Her aim is to encourage Christians who frequently struggle over their remaining sin and find themselves despairing. She bases many of her thoughts on con
Jul 27, 2014 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
Authentic, doctrinal, worthwhile. This is my recommendation for friends who have walked with Christ long enough to be weary of their own weak performance. Buy it, read it, savor it. Thank you, Barbara Duiguid for your honesty and humility
Jul 18, 2015 Jodi rated it it was ok
Read this for our women's bible study at church. She was too inconsistent in her theology, made broad, sweeping generalizations in one chapter but then flushed it out well. This book is definitely not for a new believer as it could cause a lot of confusion and misunderstanding. The other annoyance I had was she did not make it clear when she was referencing/paraphrasing John Newton or if it was her own thought. For me, I equate it to being too similar to the parenting book of Give Them Grace by ...more
Apr 22, 2014 Dean rated it it was amazing
First, I would like to thank the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals for rewarding me with this free book from their book giveaway hosted on the Mortification of Spin Podcast Series.

Though I have to turn a paper in next week, I have quickly skimmed and read the whole book and found it completely worth my time, even though I had thought it would benefit others more than it would benefit me. I would like to write a book review of this, but I am too lazy and have the excuse of an actual paper due n
Kara Larson
Jan 25, 2015 Kara Larson rated it it was ok
Eh... Relatively frustrating throughout bordering on Antinomianism, but it did help me to remember the wealth of this book to a Christian in a certain time in his walk with Christ.
I wish there had more of an emphasis on the following sentences of the book not found until the last chapter, "we are to strive for growth with all our strength and to work to put sin to death within us. But we are to do so in a way that is always mindful of our inability and weakness so that we do not despair."
Jan 12, 2014 Jodi rated it it was amazing
This book was put into my hands by someone I greatly respect, otherwise I may not have read this book on my own. There are countless books out there with grace as the main subject. This book has turned out to revolutionize the way I view sin and God's power over my sin. It's a book I could benefit from reading a few more times as well, though it was written in a reader friendly style. I appreciate the author's honesty and insight. A must read for sure!
Stephen Wolfe
Sep 09, 2014 Stephen Wolfe rated it it was ok
Classic antinomianism re-imaged with modern stories and modern helplessness. It is full of false dilemmas, equivocations, unidentified opponents, misrepresentations and failures to make distinctions. At times it even tries to sell a popular Calvinist caricature: fatalism.

Read Mark Jones' Antinomianism. It shows how this modern form of "free grace" is just the old antinomianism recycled.
Jan 29, 2016 Sally rated it really liked it
Interesting premise: God allows us to struggle with sin to cause us to rely fully on Him. It makes sense, but it's a hard premise to accept if you assume your salvation implies you are to be holy. So if you're holy, why do you keep sinning again and again, and mustn't God be sad and frustrated at your failures? The author wants Christians to understand that God loves us and is sovereign over both our salvation AND our sanctification, so He is always working on us, but maybe not the way/pace we w ...more
Amanda Rogozinski
Jan 18, 2016 Amanda Rogozinski rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
“Wherever you have sinned and continue to sin, he has obeyed in your place. That means that you are free to struggle and fail; you are free to grow slowly; you are free at times not to grow at all; you are free to cast yourself on the mercy of God for a lifetime.” Extravagant Grace Ch 9 pg 153

Do you believe that sanctification progresses in the measure you cooperate with God’s work in you? Do you believe that you should sin less, and be perfect more, the longer you’ve been a Christian? Do you be
Shawn Trautman
Jul 10, 2014 Shawn Trautman rated it it was amazing
A Great book on the God's grace in our sanctification.

In this book the author takes the writings of John Newton, couples them with her personal experience and applies them to the life of the christian today. It is a fantastic book, and makes clear the role of grace in life of the Christian.

I found this book exceptionally helpful in the midst of all the controversy and misunderstanding today on sanctification and justification. I often observe that people are so afraid of legalism that they off
Feb 13, 2014 Teresa rated it it was amazing
Wow! For years I've wondered why I struggle with certain sins. I wondered what was wrong with me and would try even harder. My family has suffered some serious health problems for many years, including my 2 children. There were times when I really thought God was punishing me or was angry with me. A friend sent me this book, and what a blessing it has been to my spiritual life. Thank you Barbara Duguid for writing this wonderful book. It had opened my eyes to the true nature of God and his uncon ...more
Apr 22, 2014 Patty rated it it was amazing
This is the best and most important book you may read in your Christian life. Barbara is transparent in sharing with you God's grace in her life. For those of us who have dealt with the guilt of our sin and questioned the assurance of our faith, she offers the love of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to strengthen, encourage, and guide us in our daily walk with the Lord. Our sin is indeed vast, but the love of our Father is even vaster. For every glance we give to our sin, cast 100 glances at ou ...more
Jun 03, 2015 Anita rated it liked it
A good book, especially for those who struggle with knowing God's grace and living in it. I feel there is a pendulum swinging between grace alone and by grace we work. I feel this book, in my understanding, was swung a bit too far toward grace. People could read and take away that we do not need to change our lives at all. And it is God who works the change in us, but there will be change. So, while I did like the book and thought the message was needed for some, I felt it was a bit too strongly ...more
Dec 18, 2014 Shannon rated it liked it
Extravagant Grace is a book written by the pastor’s wife of the church I attended for two years at Grove City. It seems to be selling well, and a lot of people who are not grovers are reading it. Matt and I read it with another married couple as part of a weekly bookclub and my feelings toward it are very mixed.

Duguid takes the reader through the tenants of sanctification and the issues of besetting sins in mature Christians. There were some lines that I so needed to read that I had to sit back,
In many ways this book was a balm to my soul. It is an exploration of John Newton's teaching on sanctification, which stands as a rebuke to triumphalistic claims of victory over sin. By contrast, Newton advised the recipients of his pastoral letters that the purpose of sanctification is not that we sin less and less in this life, but that we increasingly see our absolute need for Jesus.

This has a lot of implications for one's daily walk. It means taking a high view of the Holy Spirit's sovereign
Kelly Schulz
“Perhaps our greatest problem (as Christians) is not the reality of our sin, but our unbiblical expectations of what Christian growth should look like.”
Barbara uses her book to unpack the encouragement of applying John Newton's teaching on Grace to the process of our progressive sanctification through the Holy Spirit's ordaining work.
This book helped me to prayerfully cultivate a stronger biblical posture towards my own besetting sin struggles and weakness as constant opportunity for a deepened
Nov 03, 2013 Kara rated it it was amazing
“What if growing in grace is more about humility, dependence, and exalting Christ than it is about defeating sin?”

An unsettling thought, isn’t it?

This is the premise of Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in Our Weakness by Barbara Duguid. It’s based largely on the writings of John Newton (of Amazing Grace fame), and is basically an overview of his writings on sin and sanctification. As Mrs. Duguid unpacks Newton’s theology, she is incredibly frank about her own struggles with sin, using t
Lisa Pratt
Dec 07, 2013 Lisa Pratt rated it it was amazing
At the conference I recently attended, I had the privilege of unexpectedly meeting the author of this book just after having purchasing it. I had not read it yet, for which I am thankful, because if I had, I may have made an emotional embarrassment of myself in front of her and those who were around. God has used this book to help establish in my heart the beautiful truth about who He is, and I wish to share it with you.

In her book, Extravagant Grace, Barbara Duguid expounds upon the writings of
Roger Leonhardt
Oct 16, 2013 Roger Leonhardt rated it it was amazing
What is Sanctification? Barbara Duguid, not only answers that question, but she also gives us examples from real life.

Many think that sanctification means a person sins less and less until they are almost perfect. Duguid shows us that, as we get closer to God, we see more of our sin. It is a humbling experience.

Who performs sanctification? God or man? She shows in this book it is us who live the life, but God gives us the ability through His grace.

God desires to change us. He shows us our failin
Mar 18, 2015 Coyle rated it it was amazing
We’ve all heard the testimonies at church:
I was a terrible sinner headed straight for hell until someone shared the Gospel with me, and now I’m a Christian!
One problem with many modern Christians is that we hear this narrative and assume that “now I’m a Christian” means that the “I was a terrible sinner” part no longer applies. We assume that once we come to the faith, the “sin” business is over and done with and all we have to worry about is whether we’re as fully happy as we should be. Whic
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Barbara Duguid is a counselor and ministry assistant at Christ Presbyterian Church (ARP) in Grove City, PA where she crafts the weekly liturgy. She is a pastor’s wife and the mother of 6 children, and she holds an advanced certificate in biblical counseling from the Christian Counseling and Educational Foundation (CCEF) in Glenside, PA.
She is married to Iain M. Duguid.
More about Barbara R. Duguid...

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“Every week I counsel young people from solid Christian homes who are undone by their sin. As parents, we are sometimes more invested in protecting our children from the sinful influences of this world than we are in preparing them for the deep sinfulness of their own hearts.” 9 likes
“Joy blossoms in our hearts not as we try harder and harder to grow, but as we see more clearly the depth of our sin and understand more fully our helplessness.” 8 likes
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