Sunday, January 8, 2017

Review: "Speaking of Homosexuality"

"Speaking of Homosexuality" by Joe Dallas is probably the most expansive book I have yet read on the Christian perspective on the LGBT issue - so much so that I would love to read an expanded edition with more real-life examples (Dallas himself was once a "gay Christian") and in-depth discussion. As it is, the book provides succinct, organized and detailed arguments and counter-arguments. After spending a few chapters on the context and people of the conversation, Dallas covers everything from the "born that way" question to the same sex marriage controversy and several chapters' worth of what the Biblical view entails. Dallas makes a strong effort to explain the liberal viewpoint, including quotes from leaders of that movement. And while he maintains the traditionalist position, he builds bridges between opposing sides. Each chapter includes a bullet-point summary of his points - and there are many (enough that I have up on underlining and decided to keep the entire book for future reference).

*Disclaimer: I received this book for free. All opinions are my own.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Review: Essential Worship by Greg Scheer

In the first third of "Essential Worship," Greg Scheer makes some excellent points in defining worship and its part in God's plan. However, as the "handbook" progresses, Scheer gets caught up in obvious, minute details such as how to consider incorporating dance and the arts into a service and the best setup of chairs and stage space - topics which could be interesting in a philosophical and ideological realm, but not so much in technical descriptions (easy, but boring to read). The author's own reformed theology, while not bothersome to me, was also an obvious influence throughout. The book is certainly written with a worship pastor or worship student in mind, but the first half of the book is worth reading if you are trying to get a stronger perspective on biblical worship, and Scheer is very good about providing both recommendations for additional resources and about including diagrams and illustrations.

*Disclaimer: I received this book for free. All opinions are my own.

Devotional Review: Remember and Return

In "Remember and Return," John MacArthur lays out who Christ is, what He does for us, and how we should respond. The devotional is basically a plan of salvation for those who are not Christians and a "rekindling" of love for God for believers. It's nothing you haven't read before, but it's written with eloquence, and the topics are foundational to the Christian faith. This is the kind of devotional I can get behind. It's more than a page. It includes references to multiple Bible verses, their context, and their original Greek meanings. It is deep and thoughtful. And for those who actually like traditional devotionals, it still includes a daily verse and challenge.

*Disclaimer: I received this book for free. All opinions are my own.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Review: NKJV, Journal the Word Bible, Large Print

The NKJV, Journal the Word Bible, Large Print features lines in the margins for journaling. Do not be fooled by the sample image, though. The image features an example of "coloring-book" journaling, but any illustrations will have to be made by yourself. The large print could also be a a bit larger. But the hard cover is beautiful (and looks just like the picture) and good quality (it will last). I'm also grateful to have this in the NKJV. I have a similar journal Bible that is NIV, which is not my favorite version since the latest update to the translation.

*Disclaimer: All opinions are my own. I received this book for free.