Synopses & Reviews
What happens after we die? Philip Gulley and James Mulholland grew up believing that only a chosen few would be saved and go to heaven, while most people would be damned. Even while studying to become pastors, they maintained this traditional view of human destiny. But as they experienced the pain and joy of their parishioners, each of these pastors began to hear a small but insistent voice speaking to them of God's boundless love and extravagant grace, calling them to a new understanding of divine will and human destiny. As each sought to be faithful to their experience of a loving God whose grace is unlimited and unconditional, both men arrived separately at the same truth: God will save every person.
In If Grace Is True, Gulley and Mulholland describe their journey to this controversial view and proclaim their belief in a God of love, rejecting the prevailing view of a God who saves some and rejects others. This provocative theological stand has not been easy for them to maintain, just as those who have advocated universal salvation have struggled since the days of the early church. Proclaiming this message of love has put both men's pastoral calls in jeopardy and caused them to face censure from friends and colleagues -- even within their own Quaker community, with its history of honoring individual revelations. Nevertheless, they persist in their courageous proclamation of grace, hoping their message will be heard by the millions of Christians who are trying to reconcile their love for Christ with their love for non-Christians. For seekers, for thoughtful Christians, and for those who have suffered the loss of a loved one, Gulley and Mulholland offer a beautiful message of hope.
"Now I have a new formula. It too is simple and clear. It is the most compelling truth I've ever known. It is changing my life. It is changing how I talk about God. It is changing how I think about myself. It is changing how I treat other people. It brings me untold joy, peace, and hope. This truth is the best news I've ever heard, ever believed, and ever shared. I believe God will save every person."
“Gulley and Mulholland stick to their guns as they tell their stories...with compassion, hope, kindness, and grace.” Booklist
“Gulley and Mulholland have extended and deepened the meaning of Gods grace in decidedly thoughtful and lovely ways.” Arkansas Democrat Gazette
“[T]his loving little book . . . is easily read and understood, a thought-provoker for any Disciple.” DisciplesWorld
“[A] stirring manifesto on the central role of universalism in Christianity ...” Publishers Weekly
“An easy read full of interesting stories and attractive assertions.” Dallas News
“One of the most helpful books on this subject to emerge in years.” Crosswalk.com
“The authors celebrate Gods extravagant grace in ways that remind us of the amazing thing we often sing it is.” Ethicsdaily.com
“Gulley and Mulholland . . . have honestly faced the churchs traditional doctrines of salvation and eternal justice.” Christianity Today
Philip Gulley and James Mulholland's provocative theological stance that all people will be saved by God's universal and eternal grace has not been an easy one for them to maintain. Their belief put Mulholland's pastoral call in jeopardy, led to the termination of Gulley's contract with his publisher, and caused them both to face censure from former friends and colleagues, even within their own Quaker tradition.
But Gulley and Mulholland persevere with their wish to reach out to the millions of Christians who are trying to reconcile their love of God and their love of someone who is not Christian. For seekers, for thoughtful Christians, for those who have suffered the loss of a loved one, Gulley and Mulholland offer a beautiful message of hope.
“Gulley and Mulholland have extended and deepened the meaning of Gods grace in decidedly thoughtful and lovely ways.” — Arkansas Democrat Gazette
In this controversial bestseller, authors and Quaker ministers Philip Gulley and James Mulholland expand upon their belief in eternal salvation for all through Gods perfect grace. For seekers, for thoughtful Christians, and for the simply curious, Gulley and Mulholland offer a beautiful, timeless message of hope.
About the Author
I was born in February of 1961. My mother went into labor while she and my father were watching Gunsmoke.
My father was taken with that program and wanted to name me for one of the characters. Unfortunately, my cousin was named Matt, which left the name Festus for me. My mother, a Catholic, wanted to name me after her favorite pope, Cletus. They compromised by naming me Philip, the guy in the Bible who became a disciple of Jesus and was never heard from again.
I live in the same town where I was born. I moved away at the age of 19 to work, where I met my wife, Joan Apple. We were married on June 2nd of 1984 at the Quaker meetinghouse in Paoli, Indiana. I began attending Marian College in Indianapolis where I studied theology and sociology. I then enrolled at Christian Theological Seminary where I graduated with honors, to the utter amazement of everyone who knew me.
While in seminary, I became the pastor of Irvington Friends Meeting in Indianapolis. While there, our two sons were born, and I began writing essays for our church's newsletter. One Sunday, Paul Harvey, Jr. and Dina Kinnan attended our meeting for worship and began receiving our newsletter. A few months later, they were approached by a publisher with an offer to write. Already committed to a publisher, they recommended my writing instead. I was invited to send the newsletters I'd written to the publisher, who agreed to publish them. That was my first book, Front Porch Tales. I've been writing ever since.
In 1998, my family and I moved back to my hometown. I took a year off to write, then agreed to become the part-time pastor of Fairfield Friends Meeting, a small Quaker meeting near my home, where I continue to minister.
I write five days a week, usually in the morning. I knock off for lunch and a nap, then am back at it until my boys get home from school. Once a week or so, I travel somewhere to give a speech. This is not nearly as exotic as it sounds. If humanity has invented a more dismal way to travel than the airplane, I'm not aware of it.
I don't work on Saturdays, unless I've goofed off through the week and need to catch up, a not uncommon occurrence. Sundays are spent at Quaker meeting for worship and in my recliner, asleep, with the newspaper in my lap. I have single-handedly raised the Sunday afternoon nap to an art form.
This marriage of pastoring, writing and speaking is one that appeals to me. Each activity complements the other. I once spent a summer during college working for the state highway picking up roadkill. Compared to that, what I do now is a breeze.