Saturday, April 28, 2012

What I Am Reading...From The Back Cover (May '12)

Ever now and then, I want to highlight a few of the books I am reading before I read them. Here is a list of the books that are "on deck" as you might say. These are the books that I hope to be reading in the next several months. This is what the publisher says about each book on the back cover.

"Is it possible that we have left Christ out of Christianity? Are the faith and practice of American Christians today more American than Christian? Have we allowed the church to be taken captive to the prevailing culture? These are the provocative questions Michael Horton addresses in this thoughtful, insightful book. His analysis should give us pause as we consider the current state of Christianity--even evangelical Christianity--in America."

"Today we commonly see images of the cross adorning churches, dangling from necklaces, and gleaming from lapels. Yet the image that is so sanitized for us today was grotesque and abhorrent to those living int he first century. It was a symbol of evil, torture, and shame. It is this realistic and horrifying view of the cross that should call us to Christian ministry and compel us to share the Good News of Christ's triumph over death. Through his exposition of 1 Corinthians, D. A. Carson presents a comprehensive view of what the death of Christ means in preaching and ministering to God's people. He confronts the issues of factionalism, servant-leadership, shaping 'world' Christians, and the source of knowledge in order to help Christian leaders learn principles for dynamic, cross-centered worship."

"Historical theologian Ken Stewart is intent on setting the record straight about Reformed theology. He identifies ten myths held by either Calvinists or non-Calvinists, or both, and shows how they are gross mischaracterizations of that theological stream. Some key myths Stewart explores include: Calvin's opinions trump ever other viewpoint in Calvinism, including on predestination; The popular acronym T.U.L.I.P is the true yardstick of Reformed believers; Calvinists take a dim view of revivals; Calvinism holds that the redeemed will be saved regardless of their conduct; Calvinism has fostered racial inequality; Calvinism tends to lead to theocracy; and Calvinism undermines the creative arts."

"Pastor and ministry leader Mark Dever is known for his efforts to build biblically faithful churches. One practical distinctive of that work is to emphasize the centrality of expositional preaching--sermons purposefully rooted in a specific Bible text. In Preach, Dever and his former student Greg Gilbert, explain how God exercises divine power through the Word, making it the basis of any relationship we have with Him. The authors give practical advice on how pastors can decide what texts to preach on, how to prepare and outline their sermons, and how to deliver and review those presentations."

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