New Books–September 2015

New Books–September 2015

Complete New Book List

September, 2015           

Onward: Engaging the Culture Without Losing the Gospel, by Russell Moore. Russell urges us to keep Christianity strange! As the culture changes all around us, it is no longer possible to pretend we are a Moral Majority. That may be bad news for America, but it is good news for the church. As Christianity seems increasingly strange, and even subversive, to the culture, we have the opportunity to reclaim the freakishness of the gospel which is what gives it its power in the first place. As we seek the kingdom of God, we need to remember that our mission is to oppose demons, not to demonize opponents.

HISTORICAL NON-FICTION: The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal, by David E. Hoffman. The true story of Adolf Tolkachev, an engineer in a Moscow military design bureau, who used his high-level access to hand over tens of thousands of pages of technical secrets, allowing America to re-shape its weapons systems to defeat Soviet radar on the ground and in the air, giving the US air superiority in the skies over Europe. Until his betrayal by a corrupt ex-CIA official in 1986, the value of the information Tolkachev provided beginning in 1978 was estimated in the billions of dollars. His motivation was purely his opposition to Communism and the Soviet system. This is as much of a riveting page turner as any spy fiction—and is completely true with photographs of the individuals involved. The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy, by David E. Hoffman. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, this is a suspense-filled account of the people who sought to brake the speeding locomotive of the arms race, then rushed to secure the nuclear and biological weapons left behind by the collapse of the Soviet Union, a dangerous legacy that haunts us even today. Brings the characters alive, especially Reagan and Gorbachev, and reveals never-before reported aspects of the Soviet biological and nuclear programs. By the same author of The Billion Dollar Spy, this book reads like a fictional thriller.

Women and C.S. Lewis: What His Life and Literature Reveal for Today’s Culture, edited by Carolyn Curtis and Mary Pomroy Key, with contributions by Randy Alcorn, Alister McGrath, et al. Many critics have labelled Lewis a sexist, or even a misogynist. Did his writings portray attitudes that are today unacceptable? The younger Lewis was criticized for a mysterious living arrangement with an older woman, but his later marriage to American poet Joy Davidman became a celebrated love story. He was a member of the celebrated literary group, the Inklings, which included no women. In this book, which is called “a remarkably fine tribute to C.S. Lewis” by Walter Hooper of the C.S. Lewis Estate, academics and writers come together to investigate these accusations.

The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings: J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Owen Barfield, and Charles Williams, by Philip Zaleski and Carol Zaleski.  Lewis is the 20th century’s most widely read Christian writer and J.R.R. Tolkien its most beloved mythmaker. For three decades, they and their closest associates formed a literary club known as the Inklings, which met every week in Lewis’s Oxford rooms and in nearby pubs. They discussed literature, religion, and ideas; read aloud from works in progress; took philosophical rambles in woods and fields; gave one another companionship and criticism; and, in the process, rewrote the cultural history of modern times.

Unstuck: Moving Beyond Defeat, by Amy Hernandez. Amy and husband Joel attended CBC when Joel was at DTS. They now minister at Emmaus Bible College where Joel teaches. In her new book, Amy focuses on the tactics of the flesh in order that you can give it the only thing it is good for—a death sentence.

The Baptist Story: From English Sect to Global Movement, by Anthony L. Chute, Nathan A. Finn, and Michael A.G. Haykin. A narrative history spanning over 4 centuries of a diverse people among distinct cultures on separate continents finding their identity in Christ and expressing their faith as Baptists.

Joy: Poet, Seeker, and the Woman Who Captivated C.S Lewis, by Abigail Santamaria. Eric Metaxas says “a biography about the brilliant and brash New Yorker who captured C.S. Lewis’s heart was long overdue…her highly readable book should be the definitive biography of Joy Davidman for a long time to come”.

Return to Me: A Biblical Theology of Repentance, by Mark J. Boda (New Studies in Biblical Theology). Repentance concerns the repair of a relationship disrupted by sin, and a return to intimate fellowship with the truine God. Two recent divisive debates within evangelicalism—over “lordship salvation” and “hypergrace”—had repentance at their core. However, although the theme of repentance is evident in almost every OT and NT corpus, it has received little sustained attention over the last half-century of scholarship. This book offers a comprehensive overview.

Restoring All Things: God’s Audacious Plan to Change the World Through Ordinary People, by Warren Cole Smith and John Stonestreet. Eric Metaxas says: “For those convinced that ‘all is lost’ for Christianity, I say, ‘Read this book!’. Stonestreet and Smith aim to restore some balance to the doom and gloom narrative by pointing us to stories that prove that God is still at work today, through people who are addressing the brokenness and taking the opportunities right in front of their noses. Inspiring!”

The Colson Way: Loving Your Neighbor and Living with Faith in a Hostile World, by Owen Strachan. Uses the legacy and wisdom of Charles Colson to show a way of living a public faith with conviction and generosity toward all. Colson served prison time after being convicted in the Watergate affair in the mid-1970s, but while in prison was converted to Christ. After his release, he lived a public faith in many areas, including the founding of Prison Fellowship. This book introduces Colson (1932-2012) to a generation “who knew not Chuck”.

Side by Side: Walking with Others in Wisdom and Love, by Edward T. Welch. Reminds us of our call to friendship ministry and unpacks what it looks like. Builds a vision of a Christian community that moves beyond platitudes.

A Christian’s Pocket Guide to Loving the Old Testament: One Book, One God, One Story, by Alec Motyer. Recommended by Tim Keller and D.A. Carson.

Reversed Thunder: The Revelation of John and the Praying Imagination, by Eugene H. Peterson. An eloquent meditation on Revelation which engages the imagination to the relevance of the last words on scripture, Christ, church, worship, evil, prayer, witness, politics, judgment, salvation and heaven.

Day of Atonement: A Novel of the Maccabean Revolt, by David A. deSilva. In the blank period between Malachi and Matthew, the course of an entire nation was changed. This novel was written by an internationally recognized scholar of the period between the Testaments. Invites readers into the tumultuous years of Judea leading up to the Maccabean Revolt, and sheds light on what was at stake in the ministry of Jesus and the preaching of Paul.

Paul’s Spirituality in Galatians: A Critique of Contemporary Christian Spiritualities, by P. Adam McClendon, Foreword by Donald S. Whitney. Provides a context for understanding Paul’s foundational components for Christian spirituality within the book of Galatians, while at the same time dismantling a number of contemporary models of spirituality.

For Such a Time, by Kate Breslin. This first-time novel is a “powerful retelling of the biblical story of Esther set during WWII. Blonde and blue-eyed Jewess Hadassah Benjamin must save her people, even if she cannot save herself”.

JUVENILE BIOGRAPHY: Bonhoeffer Student Edition: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy, by Eric Metaxas. Abridged edition for ages 11-14, telling the story of the German pastor who was executed for his participation in plots against Hitler.

MORE ADULT FICTION: The Butterfly and the Violin, by Kristy Cambron (Hidden Masterpiece #1); Esther: Royal Beauty, by Angela Hunt; Stress Test, by Richard L. Mabry.

COMMENTARIES: Psalms 1-72, by C. Hassell Bullock (Teach the Text Commentary Series); Galatians, by Martin Luther (Crossway Classic Commentaries).