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Books I Didn’t Review

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I guess this is going to become a regular feature around here–a list of some of the books I didn’t review. The fact is that I receive far more books than I could ever read and that I read more books than I could review. Yet many of these are perfectly good books–excellent books even–that deserve some kind of a mention. So this allows me to draw attention a few of the ones I just couldn’t get to, whether good or bad (Click here for a previous roundup).

First off, here are a few titles I read but have not reviewed in full.

Meeting God Behind Enemy Lines by Steve Watkins. Steve Watkins was not always pastor of Kenton Baptist Church as he is today. In 1987, after deciding he was not eager to face four years of college, he decided to join the Navy with a view to being one of the elite Navy Seals. Not lacking in ability or motivation, he did just that and began a successful career in the military. He served in Iraq during the Gulf War but eventually left the Navy to pursue the pastorate. He graduated from the Masters Seminary in Los Angeles and, since then, has been serving Kenton Baptist Church in Kenton, Kentucky. This biography recounts his career in the armed forces and his eventual conversion. It is an enjoyable read, especially for those with an interest in military affairs. Watkins offers an interesting description of his conversion and is careful to ascribe all glory to God.

Good Mr. Baxter by Vance Salisbury. This short biography of only just over 100 pages does an excellent job of introducing the great Puritan pastor and writer Richard Baxter. As any short biography ought to do, this one led me hoping to find a much longer treatment of the life of this fascinating character.

50 People Every Christian Should Know by Warren Wiersbe. This book offers fifty short biographical sketches of Christian figures of varying importance, ranging from Katherine von Bora to A.W. Tozer and had its genesis in magazine articles in Moody Monthly and The Good News Broadcaster. It combines two previous books, Living with the Giants and Victorious Christians. As a collection of short biographies it does with excellence exactly what is sets out to do–provide a mere introduction to important Christian figures. There is am emphasis on figures in some way related to Moody, but this hardly detracts from it. It’s an excellent choice to read just a few pages at a time.

Here are some books I’ve received but have chosen not to review:

The Cross: 38,102 miles. 38 years. 1 mission by Arthur Blessitt. This is an autobiography of the man who has carried a cross across America and across the world, visiting every country and island group in the world. Neither he nor the book interests me enough to read it.

Religions of the Stars by Richard Abanes is another in a long list of books in which Richard Abanes looks at contemporary cultural themes through the lens of Scripture. Here he shows “What Hollywood Believes and How it Affects You.” He looks at a list of several popular religions: Kabbalah, Scientology, Mormonism and so on. I’m not quite interested enough in the subject matter to read it.

I’ve received several titles from DayOne, many of which look excellent. DayOne, a relative newcomer to the North American markets, is publishing a lot of books these days (several per month, it seems) and they are filling a lot of gaps in the publishing field, I’m sure. Many of their books are eminently practical, seeking to help Christians consistently apply biblical truths. A few of the recent titles are:

  • Darwin and Darwinism 150 Years Later by Ian McNaughton and Paul Taylor
  • Evolution: Good Science? Exposition the Ideological Nature of Darwin’s Theory by Dominic Statham. This title and the one before it are part of the “Creation Points” series.
  • Same-Sex Marriage: Is it Really the Same? by Mark Christopher
  • Merchant to Romania: Business as Missions in Post-Communist Eastern Europe by Jeri Little
  • Jesus: The Life Changer by Simon J. Robinson. In this book Robinson seeks to stand in the shoes of some of the people who met Jesus to give a first-person account of their encounter with the Lord.
  • Simon Peter: The Training Years and Simon Peter: Challenging Times by Helen Clark.
  • Six-Day Creation: Does it Matter What You Believe? by Robert Gurney. Needless to say, this book maintains that it does, indeed, matter what you believe.
  • Teach Your Family the Truth by Brian Stone

Buddhism: A Christian Exploration and Appraisal by Keith Yandell and Harold Netland. This may be the kind of book I’ll refer to in the future as needed, but it’s not one I would prioritize at the moment.

Politics for the Greatest Good: The Case for Prudence in the Public Square. I don’t think I’m smart enough to read it.

Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship by Scott Aniol. This carries an endorsement by Ligon Duncan so much be good. But it has been on my shelf for long enough now that I guess I’m not likely to read it.

Teaching Acts by David Cook. I like the look of this book and will keep it around for if and when I do need to think about teaching Acts. It is part of a series of similar books published by Christian Focus that helps teach a teacher how to teach. It looks very, very helpful for that purpose.

Did the Resurrection Happen? by Gary Habermas and Anthony Flew. This would be interesting, I’m sure, but I can’t prioritize it.

Let’s Study Matthew by Mark E. Ross. This series, published by Banner of Truth and edited by Sinclair Ferguson, expands to include Matthew. These are valuable little guides for person Bible study. They come highly recommended.

Psalms: Songs Along the Way by Kathleen Buswell Nielson continues P&R’s “Living Word” Bible Study series. Aileen enjoys using these studies to provide structure to her times of personal devotion.

Courage to Stand: Jeremiah’s Message for Post-Christian Times by Philip Graham Ryken is, well, I guess you can pretty much figure it out by the title.

Right Thinking in a World Gone Wrong features John MacArthur and the leadership team at Grace Community Church. It offers Christian wisdom on a variety of contemporary topics ranging from the cult of celebrity and homosexual marriage to environmentalism and birth control. While I have not read it cover-to-cover, I have referred to several of the chapters and have enjoyed what I have read there. It looks like a good volume to keep on my shelves for future reference.

Practical Prayer by Derek Prime. Here’s another one I keep thinking I’m going to read but then don’t actually get to. Sooner or later I should, I suppose, as it looks like a good read.

The Fine Line: Re-envisioning the Gap Between Christ and Culture by Kary Oberbrunner. I’m sorry, Kary, but I just can’t read another Christ and culture book right now. My apologies!

Desperately Wicked: Philosophy, Christianity and the Human Heart by Patrick Downey. Again, I’m pretty sure this one would make my head explode.

Stars in God’s Sky by Faith Cook is another compilation of the short biographies Cook is known for.


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