Addiction…that’s a word that we hear often today. Alcohol addiction. Drug addiction. Pornography addiction. What are we to make of this “addiction is a disease” concept and is there any way to break the hopeless cycle of “sickness, recovery, and relapse?” In his book, Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave, Ed Welch tackles these issues head on and demonstrates how true hope is found in the power of the Gospel. Rather than approaching these issues from the perspective of diseases and sicknesses, Welch identifies the source of these problems as worship disorders related to an idolatrous desire to worship self rather than the one true God. He shows how these problems really proceed from the heart and provides a road map, from God’s Word, to lasting freedom. As such, this much-needed book offers real hope and the promise of victory in Jesus Christ to those struggling with addiction. Are you or is someone you know struggling with a life-dominating sin? This book is a must-read for genuine growth and change through the liberating power of the Gospel!
The Protestant Reformation which occurred 500 years ago was the result of a number of key figures in church history. One of the most significant was John Calvin, whose commitment to the Word of God and glory of God ignited a great revival in the church. Although he was a leader of the Reformation, a theologian, a teacher, and a commentator, John Calvin was first and foremost a preacher. It was to this role that Calvin gave himself most fully in his 25 years as a pastor in Geneva, Switzerland. In order to help us appreciate the life and ministry of Calvin, Dr. Steven Lawson delves into what made Calvin’s preaching so effective in his book The Expository Genius of John Calvin. He not only addresses the commitments, practices, and techniques that characterized Calvin’s preaching, but he identifies 32 distinctives of his pulpit ministry that helped him proclaim God’s Word with such clarity and conviction. Since October is Reformation month and since our Reformation Celebration will focus on the life and ministry of John Calvin, this would be a great resource to familiarize yourself with his preaching and know how to evaluate other preaching!
Because of the entrance of sin into the world, this life is filled with times of great sorrow, sadness, and suffering. Trials come in a variety of forms – physical, relational, financial, and spiritual. If you have not already experienced one or more of these expressions of hardship, it will only be a matter of time until you do. And when those times come, we often ask questions like: Why did God allow this to happen? Why didn’t He do something to prevent it? Why didn’t He answer my prayers? Where is God in this ordeal? While the questions are understandable, where do you turn for answers? In his book, How Could a Loving God…?, Ken Ham tackles the difficult topic of God’s purposes in suffering and loss. Drawing from the reliable truth in God’s Word, Ham provides powerful answers for the questions you are asking in the midst of the dark times in life. He shows how your heart can move beyond mere acceptance of the theological truths of God’s sovereignty to fully hoping in God’s eternal purposes for your troubles. Are you suffering? Then let the words of Scripture through this book be a comfort to your soul!
We all know “major sins” like adultery, murder, and stealing are clearly prohibited in the Bible and most Christians steer clear of these kinds of offenses. Yet, while avoiding these “major sins”, we often lose sight of our need to deal with our own more subtle sins. In fact, we often tolerate these more “acceptable sins” in ourselves thinking them to be more minor offenses and, thus, less serious. However, in his book Respectable Sins, Jerry Bridges shows that these sins are equally offensive to God and require the same zeal to eradicate as the “major sins” in our pursuit of holiness. Bridges graciously but clearly confronts such sins as jealousy, anxiety, impatience, anger, pride, unthankfulness, envy, sins of the tongue, and judgementalism. In his admonitions, he offers a message of hope in the profound mercy of the Gospel and the transforming grace of God as the means to overcome our subtle sins. If you have been tolerating some of these “respectable sins,” read Bridges book to discover the liberating power of the Gospel to free you from them!
If you have been attending our Doctrine of End Times class recently, you know that we have referenced Paul Benware’s book Understanding End Times Prophecy a number of times. This is an excellent resource if you want a comprehensive but readable and understandable book on the end times. Benware carefully explains how a proper method of interpretation, a proper understanding of the covenants, and a distinction between Israel and the church all contribute to a clear understanding of end times events. He also provides a thorough overview of the different rapture views and positions on the millennium. As well as being biblically and theologically accurate, this book also offers some excellent charts to depict the timing of the various events associated with the end times. If you are looking for a resource to bring clarity to a difficult issue and to encourage your heart in the midst of the hardships of life on a broken planet, this is it.