ESCANABA - Swedish native Bo Lange, a former pastor at Grand Lake Community Chapel and now a resident of Escanaba, has recently released a book on Christian faith.
The book, called "Simple Faith," touches on Biblical Christianity in the culture of religions and secularism, as noted in the book's subtitle, and stemmed from a book Lange wrote in his native Sweden.
"Simple Faith" offers a look at Christian faith "as represented solely in the Bible," according to an overview of the book on publishing company WestBow Press' website. Lange said "Simple Faith" is essentially about having confidence the Bible is God's word, as he is concerned with secularism and religion dominating our culture, which has led him to reintroduce the Bible to readers.
The book breaks down arguments about Christianity "to the most basic yet powerful aspects of the Christian faith," according to the overview.
"I have the preconceived idea that the Bible really is the word of God, which means you can still trust it," said Lange, adding, if the Bible truly is God's word and "it is the revealed word of God to man," that makes it no ordinary book. He said the word "simple" helps define the concept behind faith, and also represents his own mind.
"I have a simple mind," said Lange. "Some people, especially those who are more sophisticated, they have a hard time with me, because I'm so simple. So I decided to write the book about simple faith by a simple mind."
By simple, Lange does not mean simple in the way of "easy believism," where if you believe, then you're a Christian, but "simple" as in the concept of faith itself.
"First of all, one of the chapters has to do with 'How does a person reconcile with God,' or how is a person, like they usually say, 'saved'?," said Lange. "And I say, it's only by faith. Very simple."
He said "Simple Faith" is based on an earlier book he wrote in the Swedish language, about the Christian faith in the Swedish philosophical world, which was called "The Dividing Line." That book discusses the dividing line between religion and Christian faith. "Simple Faith," which he finished writing this last year, essentially evolved from "The Dividing Line," he said.
"Coming from a secularist society and humanistic parents, I have gone through all these issues," he said. "You wonder how in the world did you come up with an idea like that if you grew up in a very liberal, progressive country? And I still believe it, so that's why I decided I'm going to write it and say, 'You can still believe this.'"
Lange said the book is for those seeking to figure out whether they can believe the Bible, for those who have just become Christians, for those long-time Christians as a reminder they can still believe the Bible, and for "sophistic philosophers" such as priests or pastors who have gone away from this message.
The process for getting the book published this time was different from what he did on his first two books in Sweden, he said.
"The two first ones I wrote in Sweden, I went to the printer and said, 'This is what I want you to print,'" said Lange. "So this time I did a lot of Web searching, and I found this WestBow Press, which I had heard a little bit about before. And they do all the publishing."
WestBow is a Christian book company, with all books published having Christian messages, said Lange. Though he had a friend from Marquette edit the book, he said WestBow has cut out a lot of the work he had to do from the first two times he was published.
"The second book in Sweden I printed 1,000 copies and I had to distribute them and it was so hard, so they (WestBow) do the distribution on Amazon.com and Barnes and Noble, and it's an eBook."
He said the company will print the book according to needs, and keeps 50 percent of proceeds from each book, which costs $9.95.
Lange comes from an Evangelical Covenant Church background and said he has been a confessing Christian since his childhood. He also has served 38 years as a pastor, serving both denomination and non-denomination congregations.
Currently he resides in Escanaba with his wife, Diana, and has recorded Scandinavian music on both cassettes and CDs. He has also helped organize area Scandinavian festivals, teaches Swedish classes at the University of Wisconsin in Marinette, and also teaches Swedish online.
For more information on "Simple Faith," search for the it online at westbowpress.com.