Tag Archives: Bible

mark

Mark’s #31 – The Jesus Story Book Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones (2007)

Having read to my daughters,  reviewed, and recommended this book in the past, I will simply paste the introduction here to give you a good sense of the focus of this great resource for parents:

Now, some people think the Bible is a book of rules, telling you what you should and shouldn’t do. The Bible certainly does have some rules in it. They show you how life works best. But the Bible isn’t mainly about you and what you should be doing. It’s about God and what he has done.

Other people think the Bible is a book of heroes, showing you people you should copy. The Bible does have some heroes in it, but (as you’ll soon find out) most of the people in the Bible aren’t heroes at all. They make some big mistakes (sometimes on purpose), they get afraid and run away. At times, they’re downright mean.

No, the Bible isn’t a book of rules, or a book of heroes. The Bible is most of all a Story. It’s an adventure story about a young Hero who comes from a far country to win back his lost treasure. It’s a love story about a brave Prince who leaves his palace, his throne-everything-to rescues the ones he loves. It’s like the most wonderful of fairy tales that has come true in real life!

You see, the best thing about this Story is-it’s true.

There are lots of stories in the Bible, but all the stories are telling on Big Story. The Story of how God loves his children and comes to rescue them.

It takes the whole Bible to tell this Story. And at the center of the Story, there is a baby. Every story in the Bible whispers his name. He is like the missing piece in the puzzle-the piece that makes all the other pieces fit together, and suddenly you can see a beautiful picture.

JRF

JRF’s #22 – The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: I Peter by John MacArthur

I found myself referring to this commentary enough during our Community Group’s study of I Peter that I decided to go ahead and read the whole thing so I could get credit for it.

This commentary strikes a balance between being devotional, exegetical, and expository.  If you are looking to go deep into the greek grammar or syntax, this is not the techinical commentary you want.  That said, MacArthur provides enough information on the original language to understand the key points and clear flow of Peter’s letter.  MacArthur also digs deep enough to satisfactorily explain tough passages such as I Peter 3:18-22.

At times it feels like MacArthur launches into lengthy rabbit trails that only seem to be peripherally related to the passage in I Peter that he is commenting on.  These rabbit trails are of course interesting and edifying but at times were distracting from the study of the actual passage.

Overall, a great tool for studying and heeding a great book of the Bible.

 

ron

Ron’s #19: One-to-One Bible Reading by David Helm

Here’s the premise: Pick someone. Read the Bible together. Talk about it.

Somehow, David Helm needed 103 pages to say this.

JRF

JRF’s #3 – James: Tyndale New Testament Commentaries by James Moo

Our community group decided to spend 5 weeks going through James so I thought I would read through this commentary as well. I took a winterm class from Douglas Moo on James during seminary was impacted by his knowledge coupled with his obvious pastoral and missionary heart (not often found in a scholar of such caliber). In that class we used his Pillar Commentary primarily so I was interested to see what differed in this more concise version.

I was surprised and excited at how exegetical and technical this small book was.  Overall it was very helpful; scholarly, yet accessible.  I have two criticisms – one trivial and one slightly more important.

First, it is a pet peeve of mine when commentaries phonetically spell Greek words in English.  If someone knows enough Greek to benefit from its mention then you would think that they would be able to read it in the original script.  Methinks it is just easier for the writer or printers not to have to change fonts.

Second, and more importantly, I found myself frustrated that Moo didn’t always take as strong a stand on some of the many difficult passages (and therefore multiple possible interpretations) in the book of James.  He did usually present his preferred interpretation along with his reasoning, yet I found myself at times longing for a stronger worded conclusion.  Specifically, I wish he would have been more clear in certain passages whether or not the people being addressed by James were just disobedient believers or professing unbelievers.  Perhaps he saw it more fitting for a commentary to expose readers to the options and let them form their own conclusions.

3.75 stars out of 5.

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