Winter 2023 Christian Book Preview

As you can see from the stack, it’s been a while since I’ve done a book preview. Here are some books that have come in recently that I will be reviewing over the next few months. If we have a snowstorm or two, I’m all set. But you might find something in this list that looks so good that you may want to pick it up sooner. I’m sure the author, publisher and bookstore won’t mind a bit. The links, as always are to the publisher’s website. I prefer people make their own decisions about where they buy their books rather than being directed to an online site. I personally prefer buying from Hearts & Minds Books, which meticulously packs and ships books and is committed, as I, to promoting the best that is being thought and written in Christian literature.

The Inconvenient Gospel, Clarence Jordan. Walden, NY: Plough Publishing, 2022. A collection of writings on war, wealth, race, and religion by this Baptist preacher from the south during the Civil Rights era.

A Just Passion, Ruth Haley Barton, Sheila Wise Rowe, Tish Harrison Warren, Terry M. Wildman, and others. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2022. A collection of readings for the six seeks of Lent drawn from InterVarsity Press books on justice and our hope in the redemptive work of Christ.

The Hope of Life After Death, M. Jeff Brannon. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. Part of the Essential Studies in Biblical Theology series this explores how the hope of life after death occurs throughout scripture, coming to its fullest expression in the resurrection of Jesus and the future resurrection of those who follow him.

Epic Science, Ancient Faith, Dan Guenther. Ellensburg, WA: Truth in Creation, 2022. Important attitudes to making sense both of God’s works in creation and God’s words in the Bible for anyone who has questions about science and Christian faith.

The Emotions of God, David T. Lamb. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2022. We’re not always sure we want to associate emotions with God. Lamb examines seven divine emotions: hate, anger, jealousy, sorrow, joy, compassion, and love.

Finding Phoebe, Susan E. Hylen. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2023. Uses first century sources elaborating cultural backgrounds to illuminate what the women of the New Testament were really like.

The Power of Group Prayer, Carolyn Carney. Downers Grove: IVP/Formatio, 2022. Praying together isn’t easy. Carney talks about how we move from “just another prayer meeting” to effectual prayer for revival and a deeper life with God.

Why the Gospel? Matthew W. Bates. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2023. We may know what the gospel is, but why has God issued this royal proclamation and how should this shape our lives?

The Wonders of Creation, Kristen Page with contributions from Christina Bieber Lake, Noah J. Toly, and Emily Hunter McGowin. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. What we learn from the fictional landscapes of Lewis and Tolkien about the stewardship of creation. Part of the Hansen Lectureship Series at the Wade Center.

The Back Side of the Cross, Diane Leclerc and Brent Peterson. Eugene: Cascade Books, 2022. How the doctrine of atonement speaks to those who have been wronged, abused, and abandoned.

Reading the Bible Around the World, Frederico Alfredo Roth, Justin Marc Smith, Kirsten Sonkyo Oh, Alice Yafeh-Deigh, and Kay Higuera Smith. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. A global team of scholars shows the value of reading and interpreting scripture in different cultural contexts.

Untrustworthy, Bonnie Kristian. Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2022. Explores the knowledge crisis at the root of divisions within our culture and corrupting the church and how we think about truth.

Being in God’s Image, Carmen Joy Imes. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2023. Imes explores the significance of being created in God’s image to what it means to be human–what it means for our work, our gender relations, our care for creation, and our eternal destiny. 

Mapping Atonement, William G. Witt and Joel Scandrett. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2022. A study of the various streams of atonement theology throughout church history, focusing on key theologians for each view.

Embracing Rhythms of Work and Rest, Ruth Haley Barton. Downers Grove: IVP/Formatio, 2022. Explores both the weekly practice of sabbath within a rhythm of work and rest and the taking of more extended sabbaticals.

A Bond Between Souls, Coleman M. Ford. Bellingham: Lexham Academic, 2022. A scholarly study of friendship in the letters of Augustine, which he understands as the overflow of love.

The Trinity in the Book of Revelation, Brandon D. Smith. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. A study of the theology of the Trinity in John’s Apocalypse in conversation with theologians from the early church.

Hardness of Heart in Biblical Literature, Charles B. Puskas. Eugene: Cascade Books, 2022. A study of key texts throughout scripture to understand why people are obstinate toward God and whether there is hope for change.

Humble Confidence, Benno van den Toren and Kang-San Tan. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. A global, intercultural introduction to Christian apologetics presenting a model of apologetics as crosscultural dialogue and accountable witness.

The Apocalyptic Paul: Retrospect and Prospect, Jamie Davies. Eugene: Cascade Books, 2022. An introduction to the Apocalyptic reading of the Pauline letters, explaining the rationale for this approach.

Cultivating Mentors, Todd C. Ream, Jerry Pattengale, and Christopher J. Devers, eds. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. “Drawing on traditional theological understandings of the mentee-mentor relationship, they consider what goals should define such relationships and what practices make their cultivation possible among educators.”

Tending the Fire That Burns at the Center of the World. David F. White. Eugene: Wipf & Stock, 2022. On the role of beauty and creativity in Christian formation.

Tell Her Story, Nijay K. Gupta. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2023. Another book discussing the first century context of women and focusing on women leaders in the church as revealed in Paul’s writings.

Anchorhold, Kristen Pinto Gfroerer. Cambridge: Lutterworth Press, 2022. Reflections in the form of letters on the Revelations of Divine Love, addressed from the author to Julian of Norwich.

Flood and Fury, Matthew J. Lynch. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2023. A study on violence in the Old Testament focused on the flood and the Canaanite conquest.

A Christian Theology of Science, Paul Tyson. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2022. “This book reframes the discussion between Christian theology and contemporary science, arguing that it is good both for religion and for science when Christians treat theology as their first truth discourse.”

Doing Asian-American Theology, Daniel D. Lee. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. Explores how Asian-American identity might shape the language and methodology used in doing theology.

The Apostle and the Empire, Christoph Heilig. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2022. A study of ways that Paul implicitly and explicitly criticizes the Roman empire in his writings, often overlooked in past scholarship.

The Old Testament Law for the Life of the Church, Richard E. Averbeck. Downers Grove: IVP Academic, 2022. Explores the law in its original context, the New Testament perspective and its relevance today.

The Kingdom Among Us, Michael Stewart Robb. A comprehensive account of the theology of the late Dallas Willard, centered around his understanding of the gospel of the kingdom of God.

Whew! That’s quite a stack–thirty books, actually. Books on the gospel, science and faith, women in the first century church, Pauline studies, the theology of the atonement, challenging biblical and contemporary issues. I’m of the conviction that growing Christians are reading Christians, reading scripture first of all, good spiritual literature and substantive theology. Furthermore, to be God’s people in our time requires not only discerning the times, but discerning and applying truth. I hope one or more of the books I’ve previewed might be helpful to you in your journey with Christ. That’s an important reason for me to do this blog that keeps me going!

2 thoughts on “Winter 2023 Christian Book Preview

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