90: Redeeming Love and the Problem With Evangelical Novels

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*Trigger Warning: This episode contains reference to childhood rape, every manner of sexual abuse and violence toward women. We encourage you to proceed with caution and kindness toward yourself if these are areas of personal experience or concern.

Francine Rivers’ novel Redeeming Love, released to a Christian audience in 1997, made an enormous impact on white evangelical women in the 90s and 00s. Pastors gave it to women to read, mothers passed it on to their daughters, and many of you tell us it was a taste of God’s love you’d never experienced before. 

With the movie out now, it’s a perfect time to revisit this book to ask some questions. What is this saying about women? What is it saying about “sexual sin”? Does this book have any similarities to the book of Hosea in the Bible? We have big thoughts – we’re sure you do to.  

Full show notes here

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Show Notes:
An Exclusive Personal Interview with Francine Rivers
I Was Addicted to Romance Novels (CT)
The Call to Mastery with Jordan Raynor (Francine Rivers interview)
Episode 356: Francine Rivers + Redeeming Love (with Annie F. Downs)
Christian Romance – UNSUITABLE (
How did Redeeming Love impact you when you first read it? (Instagram post)
The Prophetic Imagination by Walter Bruggemann (Koorong)
Maid (IMDB)
Ruining Love by Prophetic Imagination Station (Krispin Mayfield and D.L. Mayfield)