Book Blurbs, August 2018

#1 – Lifted: Experiencing the Resurrection Life by Sam Alberry (published by P&R Publishing, 2010). Every Easter, preachers says things like “The resurrection changes everything,” but rarely do they tell you what it changes or how to live in light of Jesus’ resurrection. This book gives help to those missing components. The author uses his careful reason and humor to show how Jesus’ resurrection gives us assurance, transforms our hearts, gives us hope, and drives our mission.  BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#2 – Unparalleled: How Christianity’s Uniqueness Makes It Compelling by Jared C. Wilson (published by Baker Books, 2016). What this author does with clarity and simplicity is compare Christianity to a variety of world religions. I can see this book being useful for Christians wanting to begin conversations with their skeptic non-Christian friends.  BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#3 – The Gospel Comes with a House Key by Rosaria Butterfield (published by Crossway, 2018). What you will discover in this book is not a “how to” guide on practicing hospitality but the author showing how they practice hospitality from their own home. You will be amused, moved, and convicted to hear stories of this family’s Christlike love for the stranger. You might even gather ideas for your own home for future hospitality opportunities. BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#4 – The Final Days of Jesus: The Most Important Week of the Most Important Person Who Ever Lived by Andreas J. Kostenberger and Justin Taylor (published by Crossway, 2014). This is a book that details the final life of Jesus by harmonizing passages in the Gospels together and giving commentary on each section. While there are other works that are more detailed and contain much more historical background, this book is still useful for those looking for a timeline of Jesus’ passion week with brief explanations of each event. BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#5 – 18 Best Stories by Edgar Allen Poe edited by Vincent Price and Chandler Brossard (published by Dell Publishing, 1965). I will be content if I never read another story by Poe again. While his books are not scary, they are deeply disturbing. I lost count of how many times someone was buried inside of a house after they died (particularly in the walls of the house). Poe is clearly a gifted writer; his descriptions of people and places brings the stories alive, but the conclusions and ends were too dark for my taste. BOOK RATING: 6 out of 10 stars.

#6 – Fanny Crosby: The Hymn Writer by Bernard Ruffin (published by Barbour Publishing, 1976). What a lovely woman Fanny must have been! This engaging book about one of the most significant hymn writers in church history could be enjoyed by any level of reader. The stories about her life are compelling You will enjoy hearing some of the background for why she wrote hymns like “Blessed Assurance”, “To God Be the Glory” and “All the Way My Savior Leads Me.” BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

#7 – The Communicant’s Spiritual Companion by Thomas Haweis (published by Reformation Heritage Books, 2015). Do not mistake assume when you see the publication date that this book was written a few years ago. It was not; the author lived in the 1700’s. What you fill find is a contemplative resource on the “who, what, when, where and why” regarding the Lord’s Supper. There were occasions in the book when I found my mind drifting due to the ramblings of the author, but nothing in the book did I disagree with or find anti-biblical. I could see this book useful for ministers who are looking for fresh ways to officiate the Lord’s Supper for their congregations. BOOK RATING: 10 out of 10 stars.

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