Category Archives: Uncategorized

Reviews: Books on the Apostle Paul, missions, prayer and worship

Reviewers consider Paul Behaving Badly, Transcending Mission, Talking with God and The Worship Pastor.

Origen: Reviews: Books on the Apostle Paul, missions, prayer and worship

The Hermeneutical Spiral by Grant Osborne

The Reagan Review

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This massive book lives up to its subtitle of “a comprehensive introduction to Biblical interpretation”. It’s the fullest volume I have seen on the subject and it brings the word encyclopedic to mind. There’s no way that you could find any subject in the field of hermeneutics not mentioned in this book. Its greatest strength may also be its greatest weakness as it may be simply to prolix for some people. Still, Grant Osborne has had as much direction in the scholarly world for hermeneutics study as anyone in the last 30 years. Additionally, this busy scholar has written a few important commentaries along the way.

His conception of hermeneutics as a spiral form from text to context has become the preeminent academic theory of biblical interpretation today. In this book, he breaks down the hermeneutical spiral in great detail. In his lengthy introduction, he explains the issues of interpretation…

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The Fourfold Gospel

Biblical and Early Christian Studies

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2017.03.07 | Francis Watson, The Fourfold Gospel: A Theological Reading of the New Testament Portraits of Jesus. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2016. ISBN: 9780801095450

Review by Jeremiah Coogan, University of Notre Dame.

What modes of reading does the fourfold gospel imply? To answer this question, Francis Watson (Durham University) presents “a theological reading of the New Testament portraits of Jesus.” As the indefinite article makes clear, Watson does not assert a prescriptive reading; rather, the specific readings demonstrate the fruitfulness of reading the fourfold gospel as a complex literary and canonical unity. He invites the reader to experience a different mode of reading, guided by a number of “pre-critical” exegetical insights. Both Watson’s reading and his argument about reading succeed, although this reviewer found the latter more abundantly fruitful than the former.

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Review: Rediscovering Discipleship

Skip Holman reviews Rediscovering Discipleship: Making Jesus’ Final Words our First Work by Bobby Gallaty.

Origen: Review: Rediscovering Discipleship

Last call for a book giveaway

https://ayudaministerial.wordpress.com/2017/03/01/threefold-book-giveaway/comment-page-1/#comment-330

February 2017 Biblical Studies Carnival

Pursuing Veritas

february-2017-bscWelcome to the February 2017 Biblical Studies Carnival!

Assembled below are the very best articles written this past month from around the Biblioblogging world.  I know this firsthand because I have spent all month sifting through as many blogs as possible to find the finest that scholars and students have to offer. This month’s carnival includes submissions from the categories of Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, New Testament, Early Christianity, Reading Phil Long (an homage to the Godfather of Biblical Studies Carnivals), Theology and Hermeneutics, Book Reviews, Tools and Resources, and News.

Looking forward to future Carnivals, March will be hosted by Jonathan Robinson and April by Joshua Gillies of Theologians, Inc. (@Whitefrozen). Cassandra Farrin (email) of Ethics and Early Christianity hosts in June, Reuben Rus of Ayuda Ministerial/ Resources for Ministry hosts in July, and Jason Gardner of eis doxan hosts in August.

You’ll note that this schedule…

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Threefold book giveaway

Hi everyone. I am doing a threefold book giveaway. Those wishing to participate (must live in the USA) are required to write a comment on this post letting me know they want to participate. There will be three winners; one for each book. Winner #1 will receive the book Time in the Book of Ecclesiastes, by Mette Bundvad. Winner #2 will receive the book Evangelical, Sacramental and Pentecostal: Why the Church Should be All Three, by Gordon T. Smith. And winner #3 will receive the book Praying for your Pastor, by Eddie Byun. The winner will be announced one week from today, which is March 8 at 12 PM. Comments posted after March 8, 11:30 am will be not included for the purpose of this giveaway.

Feel free to share and reblog this giveaway.

Thanks and have a blessed day.

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A Review of Holman’s CSB (Christian Standard Bible) Large Print UltraThin Reference Bible, in Black Goatskin Leather.

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I know many of you are waiting out there to see what this revision of the H.C.S.B. is all about.  It isn’t a formal equivalent, it isn’t a dynamic equivalent.  F.Y.I. Holman calls it an optimal translation.  Here is an excerpt from their site, “The Christian Standard Bible (CSB) is a highly trustworthy, faithful translation that is proven to be the optimal blend of accuracy and readability. It’s as literal to the original as possible without sacrificing clarity. The CSB is poised to become the translation that pastors rely on and Bible readers turn to again and again to read and to share with others.”

If you are like me, you might be wondering what is the difference between the two.  Here is another excerpt from their site, ” The Christian Standard Bible is a revision of the HCSB, updating translation and word choices in order to optimize both fidelity…

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The Dangerous Business of Bible Publishing in the Sixteenth Century

Hendrickson Publishers Blog

by Carl Nellis, Associate Editor

‘It was impossible to establish the lay people in any truth, except the Scripture were laid before their eyes in their mother tongue.’
—William Tyndale [1]

The story of printing from the invention of Gutenberg’s press in 1450 to the work of the Reformers has been told and retold in every subsequent generation. This year, celebrations commemorating Luther’s bold act in Wittenberg in 1517 lead us to consider the whole period of the Reformation and the long legacy of that work we inherit today.

In particular, we at Hendrickson Publishers look back to the Reformation as the early period where our own trade began to take shape, as publishers of thoughtful Christian books and, especially, as Bible publishers.

Sixteenth-century printers and publishers played a key role in the cultural shifts that made Luther’s choices possible and powerful. As Patricia Anders, Hendrickson’s editorial director, noted in

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NIV Cultural Backgrounds Bible

9780310431589-jpg_11One of the most important aspects in Bible study is context. Every preacher and anyone conducting a Bible study needs to understand the context of the passage under study, and understanding the context requires a full understanding of the cultural background of a given passage. If you want to gain knowledge regarding cultural backgrounds in the Bible, then the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Bible (Zondervan, 2016) is the resource you need to pursue that objective.

This Bible is designed to take Bible students to a higher level in understanding times and customs from the Bible. This amazing Bible comes with notes addressing cultural issues as well as exegetical and theological concerns. Notes are abundant, so potential readers should expect a Bible that demands a serious commitment to study it.

The design Zondervan has chosen for text in this Bible (NIV) is a two-column design. They have placed cross-references in a bar dividing the biblical text. This bar comes in light-brown color, which makes the cross-references easier to differentiate from the biblical text. Every chapter and heading is in red color to make it easier to identify them.

Every book in the Bible is preceded by a introduction, but unlike other study bibles, the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Bible does not include outline or theological themes. Instead, introductions to biblical books include historical settings and literary settings, with key concepts. This is obvious due to the emphasis this Bible has on cultural and historical backgrounds.

As expected in a study Bible, the NIV Cultural Backgrounds Bible is full charts, diagrams, maps, and full-color pictures and images. This makes Bible study to be more dynamic and pleasant. A concordance is also included at the end of the Bible. And if that was not enough, this Bible includes a Hebrew to English translation chart, a chart showing ancient text relating to the Old Testament, an Old and Testament chronology, a study of the time between the Testaments, a list of key New Testament terms, and an introduction to biblical text divided by genre (the Torah, narrative literature, wisdom and hymnic literature, etc…). As you can see, this is a very complete Bible, a great addition to any pastor’s library.

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As for the material, the volume reviewed in this review is a hardcover edition. Imitation leather and bonded leather are also available, varying in colors and price. The hardcover Bible I received feels strong and well crafted. It comes with a removable jacket to protect the hardcover. Price range is $34.99-$89.99.

Summarizing, this is a highly recommendable, a must have Bible for pastors, those in ministry, Bible students, and anyone seeking to deepen his or her knowledge on the subject of cultural backgrounds in the Bible. You will not regret it.

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255

Review: Excellent Preaching

spoiledmilks

excellent-preaching

Why is good preaching so difficult to accomplish, and why is excellent preaching so herculean a feat?

In this short book, Craig G. Bartholomew, the H. Evan Runner Professor of Philosophy at Redeemer University College in Ancaster, Ontario, and the principal of the Paideia Centre for Public Theology, explains how to land a plane. Every Sunday you might feel like you’re on a repeat viewing of “Airplane!” It’s like you’re speaking jive and no one understands you. You have a message, it’s based on the text of the Bible, but now you need to land the plane and get God’s truth to sit in the lives of your congregation. How do you impact their hearts and thoughts? You do you penetrate their lives and get them to think about how to live in a transformed way?

And often times, even when you do land the plane, you either land…

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IVP Academic’s Skills For Effective Counseling – Rating 8.9

The Christian Reviewer

Skills for Effective Counseling: A Faith-Based Integration“Skills For Effective Counseling: a Faith-Based Integration” was a very pleasant surprise for me.  IVP generously sent me a copy of this book for me to do a review and there is a lot of excellent content in this book.  Providing a very unique approach to learning counseling skills, the authors start with

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Hosea: An Introduction

thoughts, prayers & songs: my journey from self-absorption to doxology

Jeroboam II was king in Israel. His  purpose as leader was to “Make The Northern Kingdom Great Again!™” His own name hearkened back to Jeroboam, the leader who had wrested control of the ten tribes from the oppression from Solomon’s son, Rehoboam  (1 Kings 12).  Like all the northern leaders, the book of Kings describes Jeroboam II as evil. Listen to his-reign-adapted-refrain, “He did evil in the sight of the LORD; he did not depart from the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, which he made Israel sin” (2 Kings 14:24). But in terms of his aim at Making Israel Great Again™ he was a great success. It is too bad his restoration project never took him beyond the flawed leadership of his nation’s past.

Jeroboam II reigned for 41 years (though some of his reign may be a co-regency with his father Joash). He was able…

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Review: The Epistles of 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter

Sojourner Theology

30010088The Epistles of 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter: Newly Discovered Commentaries edited by Ben Witherington III and Todd D. Still is the final installment in the highly anticipated Lightfoot Legacy Set. Witherington and Still have brought together previously unpublished material on two important New Testament epistles, and included an onslaught of essays and lectures on related topics. The completion of the Lightfoot Legacy Set marks an exciting moment for New Testament scholarship and Lightfoot enthusiasts alike.

Similar to the previous two volumes, the commentary opens with a brief recounting of the story behind the discovery of the Lightfoot manuscripts, as well as an editors’ introduction to the person of Lightfoot as a biblical commentator. The commentary is brief and largely incomplete. There is no formal introduction to the epistle of 2 Corinthians, although the editors have included a 20-page essay on the chronology of Paul. The commentary on 2 Corinthians…

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Biblical Studies Carnival – December 2016

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For most of us 2017 probably could not come soon enough. From Trump to Aleppo, to the stream of beloved celebrities passing, a constant refrain in the latter half of 2016 was “I’m done with 2016.” Hosting the December Biblical Studies Carnival has a bit of an “inaugurated eschatology” feel – by the time you read this it will already be 2017, the new year we’ve all been eagerly waiting for; but the period of time this post covers is in the “not yet,” under the shadow of a difficult and tense year.

In Memoriam

It seems like many celebrities passed away in 2016; at one point I noticed that when a new passing was announced, many people posted the news with the note “2016 took another.” Death is always sad, but I wasn’t familiar with any of the celebrities who passed away. However, December “took” someone from “my” world…

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Top 16 Biblical Counseling Books of 2016

Pastor Kevin's Blog

blog-top-16-biblical-counseling-books-of-2016By Bob Kellemen

If you are a counselor, pastor, student, one-another minister, small group leader, or spiritual friend, you want to know the most helpful books about the personal ministry of the Word— using God’s Word for helping hurting people.

Here, in alphabetical order, are the top 16 books published in 2016 about biblical counseling or important to biblical counselors.

I’ve selected these books on the basis of their biblical depth, relevance to life, practicality for one-another ministry, faithfulness to the sufficiency of Scripture, application to progressive sanctification, and by surveying what leaders in the biblical counseling world are saying about them.

Biblical Church Revitalization: Solutions for Dying and Divided Churches, by Brian Croft, Christian Focus

Biblical counseling is a discipleship ministry of the local church with a mission not simply to be a church with biblical counseling, but a church of biblical counseling. The biblical counseling vision is…

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Book Review: Andrew T. Abernethy, The Book of Isaiah and God’s Kingdom

Reading Acts

Abernethy, Andrew T. The Book of Isaiah and God’s Kingdom: A Thematic-Theological Approach. NSBT 40; Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity, 2016. 245 pp. Pb; $25.  Link to IVP

This new contribution to the New Studies in Biblical Theology series focuses on the theme of Kingdom in the book of Isaiah. The topic of kingdom in the whole canon of Scripture is too large for a short monograph, but by limiting the discussion to Isaiah Abernethy is able to provide a reasonable foundation for understanding the book of Isaiah and its foundational role in a Christian understanding of Jesus. Abernethy’s previous book on Isaiah focused on the theme of food in Isaiah (Eating in Isaiah: Approaching the Role of Food and Drink in Isaiah’s Structure and Message. Leiden: Brill 2014, reviewed here).

abernety-isaiahIn his introduction, Abernethy describes his approach in this book as synchronic since he is interpreting…

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Best Books of 2016 (Gupta)

Crux Sola

Well folks, it is that time of the year! Best biblical studies books of 2016.

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Overall Best Book: The Crosses of Pompeii (Bruce Longenecker)

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What an incredibly interesting book! This is how you build an argument and topple a specious consensus. You can find an interview I conducted previously with Longenecker about this book HERE. Several years ago, when my family and I were visiting Rome, we chose to visit Ostia Antica instead of Pompeii. Now I am regretting our laziness!

Longenecker is not done talking about Pompeii. Head over to Fortress Press’ website and check out some of his other projects.

Best Gospels Book: Echoes of Scripture in the Gospels

ESG

This award deservedly goes to Richard Hays for his much anticipated Echoes of Scripture in the Gospels. Hays is such a creative theologian, and is able to bring fresh insight to so many Gospel texts through his famous…

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Book Review: J. B. Lightfoot, The Epistles of 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter: A Newly Discovered Commentary

Reading Acts

Lightfoot, J. B. The Epistles of 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter: A Newly Discovered Commentary. Edited by Ben Witherington III and Todd D. Still. The Lightfoot Legacy Set 3; Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity, 2016. 317 pp Hb; $40.00.   Link to IVP

In the last two years IVP published the first two volumes of newly discovered commentaries by the late nineteenth century scholar J. B. Lightfoot. In the forward to that volume Ben Witherington recounted how he discovered hand-written manuscripts several long-forgotten commentaries J. B. Lightfoot in the spring of 2013. With this commentary on 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter all of manuscripts discovered by Witherington have been published.

lightfoot-corinthainsCompared to the other two volumes in this series, the commentaries on 2 Corinthians or 2 Peter are brief and fragmentary, 2 Corinthians runs about seventy pages and 1 Peter has a twenty page introduction with a mere nineteen pages of…

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Ryrie’s Bibles and Manuscripts Auctioned off

Daniel B. Wallace

On 5 December 2016, Sotheby’s had an auction of one of the world’s largest private collections of Bibles and manuscripts. The collection was Charles Ryrie’s, former professor of Systematic Theology at Dallas Seminary. For many years I would take my students to visit his home and see the treasures in his collection. Every year he would bring out new marvels that astonished me. I never saw the whole collection, but he was always generous in bringing out scores of volumes.

Ryrie died earlier this year. He was just a month shy of his 92nd birthday. I had been keeping a close eye on his collection and had discussed it with him many times over the years. Among other things, he owned three Greek New Testament manuscripts, one of only eleven vellum Luther Bibles in the world, and the finest copy of the 1611 King James Bible anywhere. He also owned…

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