Month: March 2012

Book Review Illusion

Frank Peretti weaves an ingenious tale of loss and newfound joy with Illusion. Not since The Visitation have readers had such a thrilling journey of mystery and suspense. The story is set in beautiful Coeur D’Alene, Idaho—secluded from the rest of the world, allowing the characters even further secrecy. The plot follows the life of a man—Dane Collins—after the tragic death of his wife, Mandy. The mystery begins when Dane meets a young woman who has an uncanny similarity to his deceased wife. Despite the impossibility that the young woman could be anyone other than a complete stranger, Dane begins to notice personality quirks that make him wonder if he’s going crazy and begins to consider the possibility that it is more than just a coincidence. Illusion gives the reader a chance to wonder “What if…?” What if death isn’t the end here on earth? What if our idea of time and space is wrong? What if the mercies of God can reach beyond our wildest expectations? Peretti’s gifts as a story-teller shine brightly in this stunning account of one man’s deep despair, shattered by a miracle so great it could only be classified as divine. With the lines blurred between illusion and reality, Frank Peretti will leave his readers guessing till the end and astounded at the conclusion. It is the perfect display of how God can take...

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5 Attitudes for Christians in a Political Season

So another Presidential campaign season is upon us and Christians are engaged at all levels and on both sides of most debates. As a recovering political junkie, I realize how easily my time, my energy, my attitudes can get sucked into the life force of Presidential politics. So here are a few attitudes that we might consider as we engage: 1) An Attitude of Prayerfulness for the Politicians (1 Timothy 2:2) This is hardest to do and least obeyed command when it comes to our political leaders. Its easier to fire off a nasty email/tweet/Facebook post/blog instead of actually committing to daily prayer for our leaders, whether we agree with them or not. I must admit that I’m consistently having to repent of this disobedience. We should pray for President Obama and his wife and children during a grueling season. We should pray for the Republican opponent and his family during a grueling season. We should pray for Congressman and Governors and Mayors and local school board officials, etc. And we should not just pray with a grudging, “These guys are idiots, boy do they need prayer” mentality, but genuinely pray with concern for their well-being. 2) An Attitude of Humility (James 4:6) Politics feeds sharp debate among people who disagree on issues. These are deeply held beliefs. On certain issues, we feel, genuinely, that we are right and...

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Book Review How to Read the Bible through the Jesus Lens: A Guide to Christ-Focused Reading of Scripture

Recent years have seen been an increase in quality books addressing the Christ-centered nature of Scripture. Following in this tradition, Dr. Michael Williams wrote How to Read the Bible through the Jesus Lens. Written in the tradition of the best-selling How to Read the Bible for All Its Worth series, this book aims to help readers to read the Bible through “Jesus lens” which will help Christians to “keep our reading, understanding, teaching, and preaching properly focused on God’s grand redemptive that centers on his own Son” (9). The Jesus lens “ensures that our exegetical bowling balls stay within the lane and don’t go crashing over into areas where they can cause a lot of damage to the faith of believers and to our ability to use the Bible fruitfully in our service to God” (9). How to Read the Bible through the Jesus lens is very well-written and easy to use. Each chapter contains some introductory comments on the book, a memory verse, the “Jesus lens”, explores the contemporary implications, and then concludes by giving hook questions. This approach is similar to that of God’s Glory In Salvation Through Judgment A Biblical Theology, by Dr. James H. Hamilton Jr. While Hamilton’s book is more academic in nature, Williams’ serves as a lay-level introduction to how each book of the Bible points readers to Christ. Christians who struggle to...

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