Books I Read in March 2015

The Tuesday feature of the Worldly Saints is all about reading. The post is meant to share some of my reflections from the latest book or magazine article or blog post I have or am reading. At times, I may post a book blurb (a wannabe book review) or recommend books to be read by others.


#1 – Twisting the Truth by Andy Stanley. This was supposed to be a book about learning how to be discerning, but never once did I read anything helpful on that important subject. Not only was the Gospel message incomplete (leaving out the holiness of God, repentance and Lordship), but dangerous statements were made throughout the book, which is becoming all too common for “this Stanley.” Saying things like “even if you don’t believe the Bible is true there are still things to gain from it” can lead an immature believer to a dangerous place of speculation and doubting the Scripture’s veracity. BOOK RATING: 1 out of 10 stars.

#2 – Pastoral Leadership for Manhood and Womanhood edited by Wayne Grudem and Dennis Rainey. While this book is not as exegetical as the book co-edited by John Piper and Grudem on manhood and womanhood, it is still worth having on your book shelf or in your e-readers. The topics and their authors include a pastor’s marriage (Kent Hughes and Paige Patterson), romance (Dennis Rainey), marriage issues (Danny Akin), small group ministry (Bob Lepine), me’;s ministry (H.B. London, Jr.), single adult ministry (Dick Purnell), fatherhood and the marriage ceremony( Timothy Bayly), church discipline (Ken Sande), roles of husbands and wives (C.J. Mahaney), homosexuality (Bob Davies), and domestic violence (Paul Tripp, David Pwlison, Edward Welche). BOOK RATING: 7 out of 10 stars.

#3 – The Daring Mission of William Tyndale by Steven Lawson. Admittedly, I didn’t know enough about Tyndale before reading this book. I heard the author give a presentation on this book at the 2015 Shepherds’ Conference and my appetite was properly whetted. Tyndale was the 1st to translate the Bible into English and, in some ways, helped further develop the English language. And all of this cost him his life. BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#4 – Who is Jesus? by Greg Gilbert. I cannot recommend this book enough. Recently, I read a book review where there reviewer said this is our generation’s More Than a Carpenter (a book written by Josh McDowell a few decades ago), and I couldn’t agree more. We ordered extra copies to give out to visitors at WBC and I am thankful for my friend who recommended this book answering the most important question we can answer, “Who is Jesus?” BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#5 – Putting Your Past in Its Place by Stephen Viars. When I 1st learned of this book last fall, I rejoiced in the topic! And as I read the chapters, I rejoiced in the book! This is an outstanding resource for counselees who struggle with how to biblically handle their past. The only criticism I would have is his four buckets illustration he uses throughout the book. Bucket #1 is about responding well to an “innocent form of suffering” (e.g., disease, death). Bucket #2 is about responding sinfully to an “innocent form of suffering” (e.g., hating God because of your cancer). Bucket #3 is about responding well to suffering brought on by yourself (e.g., repenting after committing adultery). Bucket #4 is about responding sinfully to suffering brought on by yourself (e.g., leaving your wife to marry your mistress). Every time he used the word “bucket” I got lost in the illustration. I think we would be better served with just the charts he used; leave out the “buckets.” BOOK RATING: 9 out of 10 stars.

#6 – Can I Really Trust the Bible? by Barry Cooper. There was nothing I read in this book I hadn’t read before and it was probably the briefest survey on bibliology I have come across. The author answers concisely three questions: (1) Does the Bible claim to be God’s Word? (2) Does the Bible seem to be God’s Word? (3) Does the Bible prove to be God’s Word? While there are other books I might recommend before this one on the same subject, it is a good introduction to the topic of the trustworthiness of the Bible. BOOK RATING: 8 out of 10 stars.

#7 – Compassion without Compromise? by Ron Citlau and Adam Barr. Books are starting to come out with more frequency on the issue of a Christian response to the growing gay agenda in our society, This book focuses more on the practical side of relationships with those who are homosexuals than the exegetical responses to their defense of Scripture. If you are looking for a biblical “how to” book with good counsel on maintain a good witness without confusing your convictions on homosexuality, this book will be useful. BOOK RATING: 8 out of 10 stars.


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