Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Not a traditional book on marriage

REVIEW: ALTARED: The True Story of a SHE, a HE, and How They Both Got Too Worked Up about WE  by Claire & Eli

Caution: This is not a traditional book on marriage. 

Actually it is a pioneering look at marriage which contemplates and reflects on the prominence marriage seems to receive by many Christians and churches today.

The book is written by Claire and Eli (their pseudonyms) because they said they wanted to preserve the mystery of their own story as well as not wanting the story to be about them.

The book is half a love story of Claire and Eli and their relationship, and the other half is a biblical look at marriage and singleness.  Their main point seems to stress that true love is not only found in marriage, but it should be found in all relationships.  We should not limit our stress of love in just marriage relationships.

Claire and Eli say our society should not be so marriage-centered but rather loved-centered.  I appreciate that concept, and as a married woman, it made me reflect about the single people in my life.  I also valued their inclusion of Scripture and Christian tradition by quotes by John Wesley, Oswald Chambers, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Augustine, and more.

*I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this unbiased review.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Great reference tool!

REVIEW: The End: A Complete Overview of Bible Prophecy and the End of Days by Mark Hitchcock

I am so grateful to have read this book and have it on my shelf.  My church recently did an End Times Bible study and I wish I had this book earlier, because it would have been a wonderful resource!

Author Mark Hitchcock does a great job of organizing the book into 14 distinct parts and 39 chapters. (The book itself is 504 pages.)  He also includes wonderful tables and graphics throughout which helps to summarize the main points he is addressing, and at the end he offers a proposed chronology of the End Times.  It is quite impressive!

I appreciated Hitchcock’s easily comprehendible definitions of hard to explain topics like the various millennial and rapture views, the 144,000, Mark of the Beast, and more.  His writing makes hard topics easy to grasp and this makes the book more reader-friendly.

While Hitchcock does a fair job noting that there are many different end times prophecy views and theories, he is not shy about saying that he holds a futurist, premillennial viewpoint.  So be prepared when reading if you do not agree with that view. 

He does, though, note that although there are differences in the views, he believes there are three nonnegotiables in Christian Bible prophecy—the return of Jesus Christ to the earth, the bodily resurrection of the dead, and the final judgment of all people.  So while you might disagree with his view, he is OK with that and does a decent job at giving explanations and reasons for each view and theory that are different from his own.

This book is well worth the read and a great resource and tool to have on hand.  I am certain I will go back to it time and time again.

*Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.

To learn more, visit the author’s website - http://marklhitchcock.com/