Sunday, February 14, 2016

From the Pen of Pastor Paul - Book Review

I have only read the first 36% of the book ( figures for me), but I can tell it's a keeper.  The author gives many pointed, convicting questions, yet is humble and encouraging, pointing to Christ's power.  I don't know where he got "Jameson" from in the book of Acts--it's Jason in all the versions I looked up--so that is one distracting thing, but probably a typo, though written two or three times that way.  Other than that and a few other possible typos, it's good enough that I want a pencil with me while I'm reading it, in order to underline or mark parts I like.  Here are a few of the quotes I've marked so far:

'Like those new believers in first century Thessalonica, what we know today is this: Jesus has utterly revolutionized our lives. To the world, we turn everything upside down. To the believer, God is making everything right side up. The world has fallen and it is God who is picking it up. The world is like a shattered vase and it is God who is restoring it. The world is like a filthy mirror and it is God who is renovating its luster.'

'We are to persevere in prayer that we might persevere by prayer.'

'Not to be totally sold out to the Word of God is to lack that joy, that fruitfulness.  Not to give yourself to it more than all riches is to lack, is to struggle, is to trip, and is to stumble along in our Christian life.'

'When people saw the Thessalonians, they saw love, zeal, and gospel. When the world sees you, what do they see?  Do they see arrogance?  Do they see you being stuck up?  Do they see you as too good for them?  Does the world see you projecting a "holier than thou," "I'm better than you," attitude?  Or, are you an example of a sinner saved by grace?  Do they see you as a jar of clay that has been broken into a thousand pieces that God himself is putting back together; and even as he puts you back together those cracks are still visible?  Our evangelistic zeal must be shown in our lives living amongst the world; in truthfulness of who we were; in honesty about what we are; in hope of what we will become.  Like a masterpiece of art shown in a window, show the world what God can do.'

He quotes from many good writers/preachers, including John Calvin and Charles Spurgeon, as here:

'Describing preaching, C. H. Spurgeon once put it like this: "when we speak as ministers, and not as men; as preachers, instead of penitents; as theologians instead of disciples, we fail."'

'The devil hid himself in the serpent with Adam and Eve so that he could distract them with the question, "Hath God said?" (Genesis 3:1; KJV). The devil came and tried to drown out God's clear command with his noise, speaking his own version of the gospel--a gospel of self-help and a gospel of your best life now.'

'We can praise God in the midst of being sifted, in the midst of being persecuted by Satan himself because we know that our faith is a gift of God and that as a gift of God it is unassailable, it is invincible, it cannot be destroyed, it cannot be snuffed out.  We can praise God for the Devil's temptations because they are signs to the true believers of true faith.  The Devil's temptations are signs to us that our faith is real. We can stand up in true confidence against the Devil. We know he wants our true faith to be destroyed, but it can't.'

I look forward to reading the rest of the book.

Thank you to for a copy to review.  My review is honest and unbiased.