Since Bookwi.se now has more than 600 book reviews, I felt it was time to start making the back catalogue a bit more useful. I will continue to add to these topical indexes as trends arise and I have time. Links are the the longer book review.
So far in my reading about how to appropriately disagree among Christians, the best book I have read is Uncommon Decency: Christian Civility in an Uncivil World by Richard Mouw. His basic point is that we should start with our own sinfulness in mind and not ‘the wrongness’ of the other. This book is more about holding to a standard of decency when dealing with non-Christians. But it is relevant to Christians as well. One of the important thoughts in this book is that we need to be clear about not only what we are for, but the methods of how we communicate what we are for.
Since Bookwi.se now has more than 500 book reviews, I felt it was time to start making the back catalogue a bit more useful. I will continue to add to these topical indexes as trends arise and I have time.
Bookwi.se has reviewed a lot of books on prayer. By my count there are 22 books that are directly about prayer, not including several others that are indirectly about prayer. Unlike most of Bookwi.se topical indexes I will not give a description and summary review of every book but instead divide the list into recommended books and less recommended book on prayer.
If you really are serious about wanting to read about prayer this is probably my first recommendation. It is focused on the various methods and spiritual disciplines around prayer. Foster is seeped in historical Christian writings and liberally quotes from them and his own experience. I have reviewed this twice. First review, second review, but I have have read it at least three or four times. This is a books that welcomes multiple readings.
This is my second most recommended book on prayer. It is more of a practical look focus (instead of this historical and spiritual discipline focus of Richard Foster’s book). Again I have read it several times and reviewed it twice (first, second) If you are a parent, Miller spends a lot of time talking about praying for his children and spouse and uses his own family and prayer life as continual illustrations.
Since Bookwi.se now has more than 450 book reviews, I felt it was time to start making the back catalogue a bit more useful. Over time I am going to add a series of topical books review summaries that highlight particular book subject areas.
Our world is changed by technology and in many ways we look to technology to make us better, give us more, solve our problems. God created us with the ability to create and use technology, but technology is neither all good nor all bad. Technology is both shaped by us, but also shapes us in often unexpected ways. Cell phones give us the ability to leave our homes, go to the park with our kids while we are on-call, but then we often spend the time talking or texting instead of playing at the park. If you are going to read just one book about how to think Christianly about Technology, this is it.
Bookwi.se Reviewed Books Directly On Scripture Inspiration and/or Hermenutics
I am not at the end of my exploration of scripture and how we should be understanding and using it in our modern world. But I think that I have a better handle on how to proceed. These are very challenging books and I would encourage you to read them in a group because we are all necessarily limited and need the prompting of others to help us work through out scripture issues. If you want to explore scripture and how we should think about it, I would read these books in this order as a way to get started, Scripture and The Authority of God, The Lost World of Genesis One, Incarnation and Inspiration and then The Bible Made Impossible. Each have different issues and come at scripture in different ways. But taken as a whole are a good introduction.
Scripture and The Authority of God is a reworking of a 2005 book, The Last Word and I think is the most accessible and best book of Wright’s that I have read. The basic thesis of this book is that the authority of scripture is completely dependent on the authority of God. So there is no separate authority of scripture apart from God. This seems fairly uncontroversial, but it is important. Overall, this is a book that I think that many should read. It moves far beyond the discussion of ‘literal reading’ of scripture or how we should talk about inspiration. And it does it in a way that is patient and graceful to all sides.
Since Bookwi.se now has more than 400 book reviews, I felt it was time to start making the back catalogue a bit more useful. Over the next couple weeks I am going to add a series of topical books review summaries that highlight particular book subject areas. This will be a bit subjective and I plan to continually update these posts. At some point I will add a page that lists all of the subject areas to make it easier to browse. I am a topical reader. I tend to read at least 4 or 5 books in an area over a six month period before moving onto another areas. I want to make this useful for people, so if anyone has a suggestion about renaming the category (currently a very boring ‘Book Review Topical Index’) or suggestions for navigation I am very open.
I think that the Holy Spirit is quite neglected, both in my own theology and in general among most Christians. Some Christians seem to have replaced the Holy Spirit with the Holy Scripture as the third member of the trinity. The book started out with one of the best theologies of the Trinity that I have ever read.
If you read one book on the Holy Spirit, this should be it.
Yong uses the paralellism of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles to look at how the Holy Spirit empowers Christians to work in the world. What is most interesting is the use of Luke and Acts to compare the work of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.
The biggest problem of the book is that it is a little too wide ranging. It it were a bit more focused I think the argument would have been a bit better. There are times when Yong spends so much time talking about the work that the Holy Spirit is doing through the apostles that the Holy Spirit almost drops out of the picture. That being said, it is well worth reading.