Archive for the ‘Book Recommendations’ Category
Dr. Vic Reasoner is one of my favorite Arminian theologians today. His writings are biblical and yet he has in his mind the average preacher of God’s Word as he writes. Dr. Reasoner writes with a conviction that the Bible is the inerrant and infallible Word of God and that all doctrine must flow from the Word of God (Titus 2:1).
In this work, Dr. Reasoner goes verse by verse through the epistles of John and Jude. Dr. Reasoner leaves no stone uncovered as he writes. He deals with his text while also including sound Arminian theology in there as well. I appreciate how Dr. Reasoner is willing to deal with tough texts and along the way includes everything from doctrines of salvation, sin, holiness, sanctification, and even end times.
In regard to debated texts such as 1 John 2:1-2 within the Arminian/Calvinist debate, Dr. Reasoner does two things. First he deals with the text in regard to propitiation and then he looks at how Calvinists have understood John’s words in 1 John 2:2 in regard to an unlimited atonement. To the average reader 1 John 2:2 seems to teach that Jesus died for the entire world. John Wesley, for example, taught that Christ’s atonement was as extensive as the curse of sin. In other words, sin has extended to the entire world and likewise the work of Christ is powerful enough for the sins of the entire world. Sinners who go to hell go to hell because of their own sins and the fact that they have not repented and placed their faith in the Lord Jesus who alone can appease the wrath of a holy God by His graceful work of the cross.
The good thing about Dr. Reasoner’s commentaries are that while it is clear that Dr. Reasoner is a sound theologian and knows his content, he writes with the average preacher in mind. As a man who loves expository preaching and practices this art himself, Dr. Reasoner is offering his commentaries to help the preacher preach the text. He wants preachers to work through the text. Therefore his commentaries, as any good commentary will do, works through the letters. I read this work as a devotion. It is that easy to read and follow. So while Dr. Reasoner does dive into the Greek text or the history behind a debate over a text, he writes with the average preacher in mind.
Overall I once again am impressed by this commentary. I pray that Dr. Reasoner will write more biblical commentaries. While I praise God that we have so many good commentaries out there, we need more solid Arminian commentaries and this one fits the bill.
You can find more information about obtaining a copy of this commentary here.
I have pre-ordered my copy of the ESV Thompson Chain Reference Bible from CBD. I am excited about this Bible. The Thompson Chain Reference Bible has been a favorite of mine for many years. I currently own two NIV copies, an NASB, and a KJV. I have longed for the Thompson Chain Reference Bible to come out in the ESV but always feared they would not but thank God they have and it comes out September 19, 2016 according to CBD.
You can see the page here but no information has been given yet on the CBD site. I will publish a review of the Bible when I receive mine.
Glory to the King!
It is that time again to start thinking about reading the Bible in 2016. This year was a struggle for me in my Bible reading. I confess that to you and to the Lord (1 John 1:9). I did read my Bible but not as faithful as I did in 2014. Part of that reason was that in 2014 I used the One Year NIV Chronological Bible to read from. That helped me stay focused on my Bible reading. I thought that this year (2015), I would read my Bible on my own and slowly. It didn’t go so well. I did read my Bible but my Bible reading was way down compared to last year.
So next year (2016), I am going to use the One Year NKJV Chronological Bible for my Bible reading. I already have mine on my Kindle ready to go. I would recommend this title or the NIV.
Bible reading is a must for a child of God. The Bible feeds our souls (1 Peter 2:1-3). The Bible protects us from error (Hebrews 5:11-14) and the Bible keeps us persevering in the faith (James 1:21). Jesus taught that His disciples abide in His teachings (John 8:31-32) but how can we do this if we don’t know His teachings by reading His Word? The Bible keeps us from sin (Psalm 119:9, 11). The Bible is our sword and the only weapon that God has given the disciple of Christ (Ephesians 6:17). The Bible cuts us open to reveal who we truly are before a holy God (Hebrews 4:12-13). There is such joy in reading the Word of God.
So my encouragement to you (and to my soul as well) is to focus on Bible reading in 2016. God has given us such wonderful tools to use to read and study His Word. I pray that 2016 will be a year of reading, studying, and memorizing the Word of God. How precious are His truths!
Below are listed various Bible reading tools for you to consider.
The ESV Reader’s Edition is a nice addition to the ESV line of Bibles. I purchased mine from Lifeway Christian Bookstore. Mine was about $26.
The layout of the ESV Readers Bible is that it comes with only the text of Scripture. For example, I have the Bible before me and I have it opened to Psalm 41. This edition has Psalm 41 over the words but no verses. It is like reading a novel.
Now does this help? I am use to reading the Bible with verses that I find myself trying to figure out what verse I am in. Sometimes I have been reading from this ESV and have had to pick up my ESV pitt minion to see where I am reading. I know that I am reading from Leviticus but what verse? Yet on the other hand I enjoy reading a Bible that just flows. I don’t get sidetracked by cross references or by even the verses themselves. I just read. The other advantage would be that you don’t find yourself counting verses. I just read chapters and not verses. This allows for longer Bible reading. My plan is to read the Bible through in this edition.
Overall this is a unique Bible and one that I do recommend. It has semi-large print (about 8.5) which makes it easy to read. This, of course, would not be a preaching or even study Bible. It is made simply to read from. I do encourage all disciples to read this edition of the ESV and enjoy!
I don’t write much about eschatological issues here. It is not my cup of tea. It’s not that I don’t hold to a position on end times, it’s simply that I don’t use this blog to get my views out. Part of this reason is that my views have changed over the years. For example, when I first started blogging back in 2007, I was a premillennialist. I even taught a Bible study once called, “Seven Reasons Why I Believe in a Pre-Tribulation Rapture.” My views since have changed drastically on these issues.
Dr. Vic Reasoner was once such brother who I read from and who helped to change my views. His commentary on Revelation was from a partial preterist viewpoint and then his book, The Hope of the Gospel, explored the early Methodist views on eschatology. When I first was saved, I began to read John Wesley and was struck by his never mentioning the rapture. I assumed that all Christians believed in the rapture of the church. I was struck by Wesley’s lack of emphasis on it being the last days. I assumed Christians had always held that we are living in the last days. But Reasoner shows that the early hope of the Methodists was the gospel itself. In fact, it was the gospel that drove them to embrace postmillennialism. Their Arminianism informed them that they believed in an unlimited atonement and this doctrine set them out to preach the gospel to all nations. It was their belief in unlimited atonement that pushed them to embrace postmillennialism.
Now I know that some Arminians still hold to both premillennialism and to amillennialism. I am aware that disciples can disagree over these issues and still serve the Lord tougher, still enjoy fellowship, still worship the King, etc. This is not an issue of unity nor am I trying to stir up the pot by pointing readers to read Reasoner’s book. I do believe he makes a strong case both for postmillennialism and how Arminians should embrace this view. I highly recommend the book and encourage you to study it out (even if you don’t agree with postmillennialism). For Arminians, the history of Arminianism is strong in Reasoner’s book.