Thursday, November 19, 2015

Kindle Deals (including freebies): Perfectionism, Finding Hope in the Midst of Cancer, the Biblical Roots of Expressions We Use, Things Jesus Never Said, Don't Follow Your Heart, Etc.

Picture Perfect
Free for a limited time

Also free on Vyrso and iBooks

Frankly, Your Perfectionism Isn’t Enough.

Perfectionism is a crushing burden that can leave us angry, anxious, and paralyzed. But the quest for perfection will never transform a heart. Amy Baker examines the root and purpose of the longing for perfection to show how God’s grace transforms the aching “not enough” of perfectionism into the overflowing abundance of faith.

Amy Baker, PhD, is the Ministry Resource Director at Faith Church (Lafayette, IN); Director of Counseling for Vision of Hope, a faith-based residential treatment program; Instructor and counselor at Faith Biblical Counseling Ministries; a council member of the Biblical Counseling Coalition: and the author of Getting to the Heart of Friendships as well as several counseling minibooks. She and her husband Jeff have two children.

Free in various formats: Pdf, Mobi (Kindle) and Epub (Apple, Nook, Sony)

Beacon2Light: One of my pet peeves, especially when Christians say it. "Follow your heart" is terrible advice. Pursue God instead, through faithful study of His Word and prayers for wisdom and obedience, especially when the heart wants what God disapproves of, then allow Him to GUIDE your heart.

for $2.99 (also on vyrso, iBooks, Kubo, Barnes and Noble and more)

As a pastor and chaplain at a cancer treatment facility, Dr. Michael S. Barry has spent hours with cancer patients listening to their stories, reflecting with them on their disease, and helping them better understand the role their faith can play at this critical time. And frequently, he has sat beside them as they wrestle with tough questions that have no easy answers.

Now Dr. Barry shares the answers that have come to his heart through his ministry to men, women, and young people engaged in the battle of their lives. These answers will re-engage your faith, re-energize your mind and body, and revitalize your hope. These answers will truly give you A Reason for Hope.

Raising Cain
99 cents on Kindle

About the Author
Wayne Harvey is director of missions with the Santa Fe River Baptist Association in Gainesville, Florida, and has pastored churches in Connecticut and Florida. He holds degrees from Florida State University (B.A.), Yale Divinity School (M.A.), and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div.; D.Min.).

10 Things Jesus Never Said

99 cents on Kindle
Will holds a BA in History from Baylor University, and a Master's of Divinity and a Doctor of Ministry from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Will was named a Baylor University Outstanding Young Alumni in 2001 and an Honorary Alumnus of Baylor's Truett Seminary in 2003.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

A Summary of Show Them No Mercy in 4 Parts:View Number 3 (Eschatological Continuity)

View Number 3: Eschatological Continuity

Daniel L. Gard’s position is that of Eschatological Continuity. To summarize, this view sees ancient Israel as God’s theological, political and chosen people to punish the Canaanites via genocide and occupy a land that God had granted them. God acted through Israel to perform this function. Gard goes further into the Old Testament also to argue that sometimes God acted solely in the destruction of His enemies in a type of herem. He sees that as the only justifiable genocide of history and it will only be repeated by God in the last days when he commits a final herem upon the people of the Earth.

There is a lot to praise in this portion of the book though I don’t favor his view. On page 116, Gard gives a great summary of what herem (or the ban) means and how it was acted out in the biblical accounts versus the Canaanites. Rooted in what I see as his evident Reformed background, Gard is terrific on the attributes of God and thus His character and conduct. However, it is that reformed position that I take issue with but not that alone.

My reformed brethren are very good on many of the doctrines of God. I respect that. However, in their view of Israel I would have to disagree. I believe it is clear that God’s promises are of an everlasting covenant (Genesis 17:7, 13, 19), an everlasting possession of the land (Genesis 17:8: 48:4) and their being His everlasting covenant people 
(Genesis 17:7). The reformed movement sees the Church as inheriting the promises to Israel and therefore Israel has no right to call itself the people of God today unless they as individuals are incorporated into the Church through salvation in Jesus Christ. While I agree with the Apostle Paul in being burdened for the salvation of the Jews, I believe that God’s Word is quite clear that His covenant with them is irrevocable and while they may be faithless, God remains faithful.

Gard views Israel’s activity as historically accurate. He sees the Scriptures as a reliable historical text. Thus he believes that Israel was divinely sanctioned to commit “genocide” against the Canaanites. As I mentioned with the second view, a view that I favor by the way, I believe that the very meaning of genocide is inherently negative and evil. What God did through Israel as recorded in the Old Testament was not evil so the term genocide, not being a neutral or good term, is inadequate and in fact detrimental in describing what God did and why He did it. While applauding Gard for his high view of Scripture, I disagree on this as I did when Merrill used the term.

No nation of people today, argues Gard, are the people of God on earth today as ancient Israel once was. I have already discussed my disagreement with this assessment. The Church alone is the people of God, he continues. And making the link to eschatology, or the last days, Gard argues that “the Lord of the Church alone,” not the Church, will conduct a “great and final herem.”

He correctly asserts that genocide in our world today is always wrong and never justifiable and that the Church has never been authorized by God in the mass murder of others. While this view adequately separates ancient Israel’s activity versus the Canaanites from what was done in the Crusades, in Rwanda, Bosnia and throughout Europe under the Nazis, etc., I do not believe it bests settles the argument as to why Israel was justifiable in its behavior versus the Canaanites while no one since has been. Also, I would not classify God’s coming wrath in His Second Coming as genocide either.

In conclusion, I would advocate for the second position, The Case for Moderate Discontinuity, but would understand that many of my Reformed brethren would embrace this view instead. To me, it is a close second in best explaining the justification of Israel’s actions regarding the Canaanites and its being unlike what is done in our modern world. Daniel Gard does the Reformed movement a great service despite my disagreement.
View number 1: Radical Discontinuity
View number 2: Moderate Discontinuity

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Billy Graham book for 99 cents, Tozer for Free, Prayer Warrior Devotional is Free, and a Low Cost Book on Praying Despite Doubt and Fear

Billy Graham by Sir David Frost for 99 cents

or Vyrso  or iBooks

When tragedy strikes, people desperately search for answers. Believers and unbelievers alike find themselves turning to God. Best-selling author and pastor Max Lucado points to the only real answer to tragedy and crisis: Prayer. In For the Tough Times, Lucado helps us understand how to pray despite our doubt and fear.

The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer

He Fights For You by Max Lucado
$1.99 on Kindle

Forty scriptures of promise and purpose and corresponding inspirational passages to encourage those facing everyday battles. Ideal for daily reading, each segment includes a reminder that even in difficult times, God fights for his people.

The 7-Day Prayer Warrior Experience is a free eBook from bestselling author Stormie Omartian, developed using excerpts from Prayer Warrior and Prayer Warrior Prayer and Study Guide. Are you equipped for spiritual battle? Take the next seven days to “put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11). Join Stormie as she explains the pieces of armor, what they mean, and how they can help you be a prayer warrior in your spiritual battle. With devotional thoughts, suggested prayers, ways to dig deeper, and opportunities to connect with Stormie and a whole community of prayer warriors, The 7-Day Prayer Warrior Experience will empower you with the truth that “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

Monday, November 2, 2015

A Summary of Show Them No Mercy in 4 Parts: View Number 2 (Moderate Discontinuity)

Eugene Merrill’s case for moderate discontinuity is my preferred interpretation. Without having read it, I came to the same conclusions as he had save the use of the term genocide. More on that in a few paragraphs.

I will label this the dispensational view. It is further evidence, I believe, of how faithful dispensationalism is to the biblical text. It alone accounts for the seeming incongruity of Jesus’ ministry of salvation, mercy and grace with the judgment of the Canaanites in their wholesale annihilation by God as represented in the Old Testament.

One of the things I appreciate is the depth of Merrill’s material that he explains from the Word of God. He believes, rightly I would say, that the wholesale killing of the Canaanites was the judgment of God on a specific people (the Canaanites), at a specific period (the claiming of the land of promise under Joshua), by means of a specific agent (the Israelites) for a specific purpose (to claim the land promised to them while remaining true to their calling of holiness among the nations).

Therefore, as Merrill argued, it is wholly unjustifiable in any other context, most specifically the Church Age. The use of it to justify the Holocaust or the Crusades is an abuse of the Scriptures and not what Merrill identifies as Yahweh war. I would take this a step further and say that thus it merits a different designation than what is understood as genocide.

As to the use of the word genocide, I would disagree with Merrill. Genocide is a loaded word with a deserved negative connotation. To use such an inflammatory term for specific wickedness seen too often in our time to describe what God did through the Israelites is deplorable. However, if genocide were a neutral, amoral term, then it would be appropriate to use it in reference to what happened with the Canaanites. I don’t believe that Merrill, or anyone else for that matter, would argue that the term genocide is without inherent negative meaning.

God is a God of justice, holiness and righteousness. He is also a God of mercy, grace, patience and forgiveness. Even as Jesus offered the forgiveness of God to repentant sinners that didn’t come without a cost. God’s wrath was poured out on Jesus. The first view misses that entirely. Again, I think this view, which mirrors my own, is the correct one.

God’s forgiveness, mercy and grace are shown in the sparing of Rahab and all who sought shelter from the coming wrath in her home. Yet God’s righteous anger was illustrated in all of its justifiable fury in the annihilation of the rest of the Canaanites. I believe those two activities, God’s mercy and grace shown to repentant believers and wrath poured out on those who refused to repent, foreshadow the truths we find in salvation through Jesus Christ. Eternal bliss in Heaven awaits believers and an eternity in the Lake of Fire, without mercy, is the destiny of unrepentant sinners. In other words, God is magnanimously gracious and merciful to those who turn to Him in faith and repentance but also without mercy to those who refuse.

Our American culture bristles at such a view of God. Americans wish to have the positive attributes of God without the supposedly negative ones. God is loving, merciful, gracious, and kind in their view. A God of justice and wrath is hated by them. It is in fact this rebellion from the true God that imperils them to the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth that Jesus spoke about. No matter how they seek to sanitize God generally or Jesus particularly, the Bible is clear on the full attributes of God, as revealed in both the Old and New Testaments.

He is God and there is no other. Woe to the person who will seek to craft God in their own image or according to their own likeness. Those who worship God must worship Him in spirit and in truth as He is and always will be.

To read the first view:

A Summary of Show Them No Mercy in 4 Parts: View Number 1 (Radical Discontinuity)