New Books–December 2014

New Books–December 2014

Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More—Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist, by Karen Swallow Prior. Hannah (1745-1833) was a champion of literacy, an evangelical author of “cheap tracts” for England’s poor, an accomplished writer, and an opponent of the slave trade.

Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God, by Tim Keller. Prayer is the only way we experience deep change—the reordering of our lives. It is the way we know God, the way we finally treat God as God.

God Dwells Among Us: Expanding Eden to the Ends of the Earth, by G.K. Beale and Mitchell Kim. This is a popular-level distillation of Beale’s more scholarly work, The Temple and the Church’s Mission: A Biblical Theology of the Dwelling Place of God. Beginning with the concept of Eden intended as God’s dwelling place in Genesis, he traces the concept through the Scriptures as Eden is lost, its restoration promised in the prophets, Eden rebuilt with Jesus as the New Temple in the Gospels, the church as the New Temple in the epistles, and Eden restored and completely expanded in the New Heavens and New Earth of Revelation 21.

Miracles: What They Are, Why They Happen, and How They Can Change Your Life, by Eric Metaxas, author of the acclaimed biography of Bonhoeffer. A more current, personal, and anecdotal version of C.S. Lewis’ book on the subject. It is also a thoughtful response to the “New Atheists” who have not only asserted the impossibility of miracles and the supernatural but also the outright harmfulness of belief in them.

A New Heaven and a New Earth: Reclaiming Biblical Eschatology, by J. Richard Middleton. The author plunges into a treasured mis-reading of the Bible. Whereas Christians typically express their hope of an other-worldly heaven, the Biblical hope is for a new heavens and new earth, in which the existing earth is redeemed and transformed, and in which the Biblical prophecies of both the OT and NT are fulfilled.

Tyndale: The Man Who Gave God an English Voice, by David Teems. Biography of the gifted, courageous “heretic” who dared translate the Word of God into English, and who was burned at the stake by Henry VIII for his efforts. This is how the Reformation officially reached English shores, and the cost of bringing it there.

Mom Enough: The Fearless Mother’s Heart and Hope, edited by Tony and Karalee Reinke. Time Magazine asked the question: “Are you Mom enough?” But this was the wrong question. The more essential question is: “Is God God enough?” This short book on the daily trials and worries of motherhood shows how to treasure God and depend on His all-sufficient grace.

Jesus, Continued: Why the Spirit Inside You Is Better Than Jesus Beside You, by J.D. Greear. Explains why Jesus said it was to our advantage that He go and send the Spirit in John 16:7.

Discovering Romans: Spiritual Revival for the Soul, by S. Lewis Johnson, Jr. With a teaching ministry which included DTS and Trinity Evangelical Seminary, and 50 years of pastoral ministry including serving as teaching elder at Believers Chapel in Dallas, Johnson during his lifetime influenced an entire generation of pastors and Bible students. This is the first popular level guide by this outstanding Bible teacher.

John Rogers: Sealed with Blood—the Story of the First Protestant Martyr of Mary Tudor’s Reign, by Tim Shenton. Rogers was a former Catholic priest who was befriended by Tyndale, and converted to the Reformed faith. After Tyndale was martyr-ed, Rogers carried on his work and published Matthew’s Bible in England. When the Catholic Queen Mary (Bloody Mary) ascended to the throne, he was burned at the stake.

Vanishing Grace: What Ever Happened to the Good News? by Philip Yancey. Making a difference in an age of confusion. Yancey asks why Christians continue to lose influence, respect and reputation in our culture, while everywhere people thirst for grace.

Mere Believers: How Eight Faithful Lives Changed the Course of History, by Marc Baer. Biographical sketches of Oswald and Biddy Chambers, G.K. Chesterton, Dorothy Sayers, Hannah More, the Countess of Huntingdon, Olaudah Equiano, and William Wilberforce.

Hidden But Now Revealed: A Biblical Theology of Mystery, by G.K. Beale and Benjamin L. Gladd. How could Israel and its leaders-and even Jesus’ disciples—seem unable to grasp the messianic identity and climactic ministry of Jesus, especially since His true deity, death, resurrection and role in the establishment of the eternal kingdom were predicted in the OT? This book explores the biblical conception of mystery as an initial, partly hidden revelation that is subsequently more full revealed, and explores all the occurrences of mystery in the NT.

HISTORICAL NON-FICTION: Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War, by Max Hastings. Re-creates the dramatic first year of WWI and shows why it was inevitable that this first war among modern nations could not produce a decisive victory.

The Trinitarian Devotion of John Owen, by Sinclair B. Ferguson (Long Line of Godly Men Profile series). The Puritan great John Owen (1616-1683) was a pastor, theologian and military chaplain, and his writings show his Trinitarian passion that “the greatest privilege any of us can have is this: we can know God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit”.

The Pilgrim’s Regress: Wade Annotated Version, by C. S. Lewis, edited and introduced by David C. Downing. This allegory was the first book Lewis wrote after becoming a Christian, and remains one of the best records of how he went from cynical atheist to joyous believer. Downing’s annotations help make this classic more accessible to today’s readers.

COMMENTARIES: 1-2 Thessalonians, by Jeffrey A.D. Weima (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the NT); Mark, by Grant R. Osborne (Teach the Text series).

ADULT FICTION: Jayber Crow, by Wendell Berry (Port Williams series). Considered the most complete of the Port William novels, this tells the story of the man orphaned at an early age who abandoned plans to become a minister and instead became the town barber, told from his birth to old age. The focus is on the redemptive power of love and community, and the beauty and wonder of God’s creation.

ADULT AND FAMILY DVDs: Out of the Darkness: the Story of the English Bible, presented by Truth Remains.

BOOKS ON CD: Hannah Coulter, by Wendell Berry (Port William series). Berry is considered one of America’s finest writers, and has been compared to William Faulkner. In this novel, Hannah Coulter, now in her seventies, twice widowed and alone, has lived in the small Port William KY community for her entire life. She reflects on life, young love and loss, raising children, and changing seasons. Through her memories, Berry emphasizes the importance of community, family, and a love for creation.


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