Saturday, December 24, 2011

Tyndale by David Teems


You always assumed, I’m sure,  that William Tyndale was an important man in Christian history. This book shows just how amazingly important he was. You knew about his first English translation of the New Testament, perhaps you even knew he died as a martyr. Did you know, though, that he had a great effect on our English language? He is credited with many words in our language coming from his pen.  If you are a lover of the KJV as I am, you will be shocked as I was to learn that many of the most memorable lines of the KJV came over unchanged from Tyndale. Consider:

                Let not your hearts be troubled
               The Lord bless thee and keep thee. The Lord make his face to shine upon thee and be                       merciful unto thee.
                …for whither thou goest, I will go, and where thou dwellest, there I will dwell.

There are many others that Mr. Teems shares with us.  You leave this book convinced that Tyndale has had the greatest influence of all on the Word of God in English. There really is no close second.   

You are impressed too as you read of Tyndale’s simple faith and dogged determination to translate the Bible into English. It was his driving passion from which he never wavered. Mr. Teems quotes Tyndale in regards to his translation work:

…that I never altered one syllable of God’s word against my conscience, nor would do this day, if all that is in the earth, whether it be honour, pleasure, or riches, might be given me.

Though Mr. Teems didn’t exactly word it this way, it is obvious that Tyndale was especially gifted by God for his great work. It was his life’s work, one that cost him greatly, living and running as a fugitive with loneliness and danger always staring him in the face.

Mr. Teems has done us great service in this volume. He is handy with a pen. His own literary skill makes him able to demonstrate how deep Tyndale’s talents really go. He holds Tyndale up beside the great literary figures and even mentions where Shakespeare used Tyndale. I finished this book thinking that more than a heroic man, Tyndale was one of the really great ones. Perhaps he hasn’t had his due, but Mr. Teems while fairly showing his faults, accurately presents us with “Tyndale: The Man Who Gave God an English Voice.”

   I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Leonard Ravenhill

Sometimes you need an author that will jolt you out of your spiritual lethargy. Leonard Ravenhill will never fail you at such a time. I'm thinking now of 2 of my favorite Ravenhill titles: "Why Revival Tarries" and "Sodom Had No Bible".

In "Why Revival Tarries" there are 20 chapters with a page of fantastic quotes at the beginning of each chapter. Imagine being a preacher as I am and being hit with:

 One does not need to be spiritual to preach, that is, to make and deliver sermons of homiletical perfection and exegetical exactitude...Preaching of the type mentioned affects men: prayer affects God. Preaching affects time; prayer affects eternity.


That is paragraph two of chapter one--See what I mean!  Or how about this:

No man is greater than his prayer life. The pastor who is not praying is playing; the people who are not praying are straying.


Yes he is eminently quotable, likes a rhyme, yet is never corny. I could provide many other great quotes, but I am far too slow a typist to reproduce the entire book here. It is still in print and can be picked up at christianbook.com for $8.99. The answer to the question of why revival tarries has much, I came to see, to do with me.

"Sodom Had No Bible" is, I suppose, a book of his sermons. The thought of the title sermon is that Sodom was judged, but she had no Bible. What does that obviously mean for us today? He draws a picture that we fiddle as Rome (America) burns. "Riveting" is my review in a word. It's in print with Christian Life Books for $11.99, or used for around $4 on places like addall.com




Saturday, December 3, 2011

Why Men Hate Going To Church by David Murrow


“Why Men Hate Going To Church”—the title says it all. It’s the question we have all had, on a subject we have all noticed, without ever asking. Perhaps you imagined that there was no answer. It is just one of the mysteries of life. Read this book by David Murrow and you will have answers that will make you wonder that you never noticed them before. He gives answers that stem from the fundamental differences of men and women. We see some of these ideas in marriage books to our advantage. I will confess to being skeptical as I began, but this book is compelling. As a pastor I found his marketing/media perspective unique and thought provoking.

He shows that we have feminized church. Our services are much more favorable to women than men both in comfort and service. He gives a fascinating history of how this developed. As I read, I thought there is little than can be done about it, but in the last half of the book he gives practical advice. A new mindset is the key one.

He is friendly to the contemporary style of worship and I am firmly of the old fashioned variety, yet where his type of worship fails men he minces no words. I appreciate that kind of candor. This work doesn’t pretend to be theological at all. If some idea he offers sounds like a marketing ploy to give them what they want with no regard to God’s glory,  that is the reader’s problem. For what it is, this book could hardly be better.

I received this book free from the publisher through its book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255