I am in the enjoyable position of receiving copies of most of the latest and greatest Christian books, and every few weeks I like to provide a round-up of what is new and particularly notable. It has been a little while since my last update and, even though this is a slower time of the year for new releases, I’ve got a few interesting ones to share with you.
Onward: Engaging the Culture without Losing the Gospel by Russell Moore. This one is available now for Kindle, and tomorrow in print. “As the culture changes all around us, it is no longer possible to pretend that we are a Moral Majority. That may be bad news for America, but it can be good news for the church. What’s needed now, in shifting times, is neither a doubling-down on the status quo nor a pullback into isolation. Instead, we need a church that speaks to social and political issues with a bigger vision in mind: that of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As Christianity seems increasingly strange, and even subversive, to our culture, we have the opportunity to reclaim the freakishness of the gospel, which is what gives it its power in the first place.” (Buy it or learn more at Amazon or Westminster Books)
Word-Filled Women’s Ministry: Loving and Serving the Church edited by Gloria Furman & Kathleen Nielson. “The Bible is clear that women as well as men are created in God’s image and intended to serve him with their lives. But what does this look like for women in the church? Helping church leaders think through what a Bible-centered women’s ministry looks like, this collection of essays by respected Bible teachers and authors such as Gloria Furman, Nancy Guthrie, and Susan Hunt addresses a variety of topics relevant to women. Whether exploring the importance of intergenerational relationships, the Bible’s teaching on sexuality, or women’s roles in the church and the home, this book of wise teaching and practical instruction will become a must-have resource for anyone interested in bolstering the health and vitality of the local church.”(Buy it or learn more at Amazon or Westminster Books)
Urban Legends of the New Testament: 40 Common Misconceptions by David Croteau. “Urban Legends of the New Testament surveys forty of the most commonly misinterpreted passages in the New Testament. These “urban legends” often arise because interpreters neglect a passage’s context, misuse historical background information, or misunderstand the Greek language. For each New Testament text, professor David Croteau describes the popular, incorrect interpretation and then carefully interprets the passage within its literary and historical context. Careful attention is given to sound principles of biblical interpretation to guide readers through the process and reach a more accurate understanding of each text’s meaning. QR codes have been inserted at various points throughout the book. By scanning the code with your mobile device, you can view a video of David Croteau addressing a specific urban legend.” (Buy it or learn more at Amazon)
Philippians (Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament) by Joseph Hellerman. “The Exegetical Guide to the Greek New Testament (EGGNT) closes the gap between the Greek text and the available lexical and grammatical tools, providing all the necessary information for greater understanding of the text. The series makes interpreting any given New Testament book easier, especially for those who are hard pressed for time but want to preach or teach with accuracy and authority. Each volume begins with a brief introduction to the particular New Testament book, a basic outline, and a list of recommended commentaries. The body is devoted to paragraph-by-paragraph exegesis of the Greek text and includes homiletical helps and suggestions for further study. A comprehensive exegetical outline of the New Testament book completes each EGGNT volume.” (Buy it or learn more at Amazon or Westminster Books)
God’s Crime Scene: A Cold-Case Detective Examines the Evidence for a Divinely Created Universe by J. Warner Wallace. This one also releases tomorrow. “There are four ways to die, and only one of them requires an intruder. Suicides, accidental, and natural deaths can occur without any evidence from outside the room. But murders typically involve suspects external to the crime scene. If there’s evidence of an outside intruder, homicide detectives have to prepare for a chase. Intruders turn death scenes into crime scenes. Join J. Warner Wallace, former atheist, seasoned cold-case detective, and popular national speaker as he tackles his most important case … with you on the jury! With the expertise of a cold-case detective, J. Warner examines eight critical pieces of evidence in the ‘crime scene’ of the universe to determine if they point to a Divine Intruder. If you have ever wondered if something (or someone) outside the natural realm created the universe and everything in it, this is the case for you.” (Buy it or learn more at Amazon)
Martyrs of Malatya: Martyred for the Messiah in Turkey by James Wright. “On April 18, 2007, three men gave their lives for Jesus Christ. Two Turkish Christians and one German began their day simply wanting to spend time with local men they thought genuinely wanted to study the Bible. Instead, five hostile young men met their kindness and hospitality with betrayal and treachery. Very few followers of Christ in the rest of the world heard the story. Lost in the flood of news in our information age, it appeared to be just another senseless murder. But the deaths of Necati Aydin, Ug ur Yuksel and Tilmann Geske, while perhaps ignored or quickly forgotten even among Christians around the world, continue to speak. They proclaim the truth that there are still those among us committed to witnessing to the gospel in difficult locations. They speak loudly of love for Christ and obedience to Him. They testify above the din about their commitment to share Jesus own experience of betrayal and sacrifice that purchased salvation for people from every tongue, tribe and nation.”(Buy it or learn more at Amazon)
Going Public: Why Baptism Is Required for Church Membership by Bobby Jamieson. “Does everyone who joins a local church need to be baptized? What should churches that practice believer’s baptism do about those who were “baptized” as infants? This is a live question for many churches today, and it raises a host of other crucial questions: What is the meaning and function of baptism? Does baptism have any inherent relationship to the local church? How do baptism and the Lord’s Supper fit together? What exactly is ‘church membership’? To answer the question of whether baptism is required for church membership, Going Public seeks to rebuild ecclesiological foundations, digging deep into the Bible’s teaching on baptism, the Lord’s Supper, and church membership. Bobby Jamieson describes how baptism and the Lord’s Supper transform a scattered group of Christians into a gathered local church. It traces the trajectory of a church’s birth, how gospel people form a gospel polity.” (Buy it or learn more at Amazon or Westminster Books)