Sources of the Christian Self
James M. Houston, Jens Zimmermann, eds. (Eerdmans Publishing Co.)
Using Charles Taylor’s magisterial Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity as a springboard, this interdisciplinary book explores lived Christian identity through the ages. Beginning with Old Testament figures and moving through the New Testament, the early church, the Middle Ages, and onward, the forty-two biographical chapters—from an outstanding ensemble of contributors—illustrate how believers historically have defined their selfhood based on their relation to God/Jesus. Among the many historical subjects are Justin Martyr, Augustine, Aquinas, Julian of Norwich, Dante, John Calvin, Teresa of Ávila, John Bunyan, Christina Rossetti, Blaise Pascal, Søren Kierkegaard, C. S. Lewis, and Flannery O’Connor—all of whom boldly lived out their Christian identities in their varied cultural contexts. In showing how Christian identity has evolved over time, Sources of the Christian Self offers deep insight into our own Christian selves today.
Seeing God: The Beatific Vision in Christian Tradition
Hans Boersma (Eerdmans Publishing Co.)
When we see God, are we looking with our physical eyes or with the mind’s eye? Both, says Hans Boersma in this sacramental and historical treatment of the beatific vision. Focusing on “vision” as a living metaphor, Boersma shows how the vision of God is accessible already today.Christ-centered, sacramental, and ecumenical in character, Seeing God presents life as a pilgrimage to see the face of God in the hereafter.
In Darkest London: The Manuscript Journal of Joseph Oppenheimer, City Missionary
Donald M. Lewis (Regent College Publishing)
A small hand-written journal kept daily by a door-to-door evangelist with the London City Mission in 1861 provides a rich resource for our understanding of urban mission in the midst of the desperate poverty of slum life. Through a study of these notations, penned by German-Jewish convert and city missionary Joseph Oppenheimer, Donald Lewis sheds new light on the work of Victorian Evangelicals among the urban poor "in darkest London."
Chase Two Horses
Charles Ringma (Piquant Editions)
The proverb, "chase two horses and you will catch neither," suggests that we have to focus on an important matter at hand and that we can't do everything at once. This proverb and the others in this reflective reader, drawn from many cultures, weave a colourful wisdom from the past that can inform present-day thinking and action. Brought up on proverbs in a Dutch familial home, the author has selected proverbs that evoke humour, philosophical insights and ethical challenges for living with joy, generosity and justice. Here is a wisdom that can shape a spirituality for daily life that promotes human flourishing.
Boundaries for Your Soul
Alison K. Cook, Kimberly J. Miller (Thomas Nelson)
Do your emotions control you or do you control your emotions? Many people let guilt, anger, or self-criticism dominate their lives and negatively affect their relationships. Boundaries for Your Soul shows you how to calm the chaos within. This groundbreaking approach will help you know what to do when you feel overwhelmed and welcome God into the troubling parts of your soul. Gathering the wisdom from the authors’ twenty-five years of combined advanced education, biblical studies, and clinical practice, this book will set you on a journey to become the loving, authentic, joyful person you were created to be.
Why You're Here: Ethics For The Real World
John Stackhouse (Oxford University Press; December 2017)
What are Christians to be and to do in the world? What does faithfulness look like in these complex and confusing times? Christians are often told either to take over the world in God's name or to withdraw into faithful sanctuaries of counter-cultural witness. John Stackhouse offers a concise, vivid, and practical alternative based on the teachings of Scripture about the meaning of human life in this world and the next. Why You're Here provides an accessible, concrete program for the faithful Christian living in today's world, fraught as it is with ambiguity, irony, and frequent choices among unpalatable options. Stackhouse speaks directly to everyday Christians who are searching for straightforward advice on some of their most complex quandaries about the challenges inherent in staying true to the Bible's teachings.
All Things Hold Together in Christ: A Conversation on Faith, Science, and Virtue
James K. A. Smith, Michael L. Gulker, Jonathan Wilson, Mark Noll, et al. (Baker Academic Press; January 2018)
As Christians engage controversial cultural issues, we must remember that "all things hold together in Christ" (Col. 1:17)—even when it comes to science and faith. This anthology is an invitation to find resources for faithful, creative thinking in the riches of the church's theological heritage and its worship traditions. Reflecting "the Colossian Way" this book offers a vision that will help congregations pursue the truth in love. Top Christian thinkers show how attending to the formation of virtue through the practices of worship creates the hospitable space we need to deal with difference and disagreement in the body of Christ.
Sabbath Time: A Hermitage Journey of Retreat, Return & Communion
Charles R. Ringma (Piquant Editions; December 2017)
Being left alone to embark on a reflective journey is a great gift—particularly in our age, where remaining connected is such a driving expectation. Charles decided to take a whole six months off and to spend much of this time in a hermitage on friends’ property. To enter a space of disconnection is both a scary and an exhilarating experience. And to “down” tools and be still without an agenda of
expectations is wonderfully open and freeing. It is also walking into mystery. Who knows what might happen?
Perspectives of Jesus in the Writings of Paul: A Historical Examination of Shared Core Commitments with a View to Determining the Extent of Paul's Dependence on Jesus
Gerry Schoberg (James Clarke & Co., February 2014)
Was Paul shaped by the movement that began with the teaching and activities of Jesus, or did he start something new? Attempts to answer this question one way or the other have a long history. The purpose of this book is to raise the question again in light of more recent scholarly work—especially in light of historical Jesus research and the so-called New Perspective on Paul. At the heart of this study is not only the question of whether the New Testament truly gives a unified vision of the Christian movement, but also how the early followers of Jesus felt able to draw such insightful conclusions about him. Answering such questions through the study of Jesus and Paul offers an insight into how one can make theological sense of everyday life, and thereby live a life in Christ.
A Book for Hearts & Minds: What You Should Read & Why
Steven Garber, Karen Swallow Prior, N.T. Wright, et al. (Square Halo Books, November 2017)
Byron and Beth Borger, the caretakers of Hearts & Minds Books, have worked there tirelessly for over three decades to create a space for serious, reflective readers. Their unremitting efforts to offer quality books for thinking biblically about every area of life has inspired a volume on the occasion of their bookstore’s thirty-fifth anniversary. One of the many ways Hearts & Minds has blessed their customers has been through BookNotes. In those reviews, Byron shares colorful anecdotes and passionate arguments for why to read books. In this compilation, the Borger’s friends have adopted the BookNotes model and offer a defense for books in their spheres of interest, along with a number of further titles for the reader to consider.