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Mark: The Beginning of the Gospel (Biblical Imagination Series)
Being a companion to his commentary, Mark: The Gospel of Passion, Michael Card's Mark: The Beginning of the Gospel provides 10 new opportunities to imagine the fast-moving drama in the Gospel of Mark. …
Mark: The Gospel of Passion (Biblical Imagination)
While browsing recently at a Thrift store, I found Scandalon (1986), one of Michael Card’s earliest recordings. It was fascinating to go on Amazon and read customer reviews praising this release. …
reviewed Robin Good & His Not So Merry Men. April 11, 2012
Robin Good & His Not So Merry Men
I like VeggieTales use of classic stories to convey spiritual truths. Initially, they may have resorted more to Bible stories, which got them into trouble with those who did not like the liberty they …
reviewed Clear the Stage. March 24, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Clear the Stage
On Clear the Stage, Jimmy Needham sacrifices a little of his blue-eyed soul for a more pop-oriented sound. He loses a little distinctiveness on some tracks, but retains the R&B influence that is a …
reviewed God Shed His Grace - Songs of Truth a.... March 15, 2012
posted in Music Matters
God Shed His Grace - Songs of Truth and Freedom
The implied patriotic them of God Shed His Grace by Twila Paris could needlessly scare some people away. Interested persons need not worry about this being political. All but two of the songs come from …
reviewed Decades of Worship. March 08, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Decades of Worship
Some might think that Michael W. Smith jumped on the praise and worship bandwagon when he released Worship (2001) and Worship (DVD) (2002). It is more accurate to reckon that adoration has been part of …
reviewed Veggie Tales: If I Sang A Silly Song. March 07, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
Veggie Tales: If I Sang A Silly Song
The Silly Song is an essential part of VeggieTales. Expect one in every story.       What is a Silly Song? It is an uncommon innocence and goofiness in song. If there is a shortage …
The Living Church: Convictions of a Lifelong Pastor
How is it that one of the greatest Christian statesman to ever live is unknown by most of my friends and acquaintances? Even a self-professed Christian bibliophile had never heard of him. Even so, his …
The Gospel of Matthew: God with Us (Resonate)
Readers will be hard-pressed to find a more fun yet informative commentary than The Gospel of Matthew by Matt Woodley. The same could be said of the first volume in the Resonate series, The Gospel of …
reviewed Never Look Back. February 12, 2012
Never Look Back
Never Look Back by John Barnett is everything you would expect from Vineyard Music: original and classic covers of inspired, God-directed songs, solid musicianship and excellent production. But something …
reviewed If It Leads Me Back. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
If It Leads Me Back
How is it that what I hear resonates so deeply? More than a common humanity, it is a living God who communicates timeless truths through broken lives. It underscores our ongoing need for grace. We never …
Reading Scripture with the Reformers
Reading Scripture with the Reformers by Timothy George is the story of a book. It is the tale "of how the Bible came to have a central role in the sixteenth-century movement for religious reform that …
Paul Through Mediterranean Eyes: Cultural Studies
By his own admission, Paul through Mediterranean Eyes by Kenneth E. Bailey is not intended to be a commentary on First Corinthians. Though it somewhat serves that function, Bailey's primary concern lies …
reviewed Glory. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
I like to hear Michael W. Smith play the piano, and Glory features him in a classical film score mode backed by The London Symphonica. The latter makes for booming crescendos and delicate accents, all …
reviewed Snow Globe. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Snow Globe
Matt Wertz's love of all things Christmas is obvious on Snow Globe. It's like being shaken in the midst of one and being caught-up in a swirl of wonder. It's enough to make you rethink the …
reviewed The Love in Between. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
The Love in Between
Matt Maher's The Love in Between is a pleasant surprise. Coming after Alive Again (2009) I was expecting more modern worship than pop rock. Maher may be best known for "Your Grace is Enough," …
reviewed Response. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
From the earliest days, expressing worship through music has been on a trajectory. You can trace it from the beginnings of Jesus Music through labels like Maranatha, Vineyard and Integrity. It will not …
reviewed Invisible Empires. February 12, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Invisible Empires
"Miracle" is a stunning opening to Invisible Empires by Sara Groves. It stops me.      Opening songs are often upbeat, but this is a beautiful, pensive ballad that makes …
reviewed Marauder. February 11, 2012
posted in Music Matters
If you are a fan of The Beatles, you will most likely enjoy Marauder by Mickey Thomas. He covers three Beatles’ songs and one each by Paul McCartney (“Maybe I’m Amazed”) and George …
reviewed Saying Grace. February 11, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Saying Grace
I never knew Geoff Moore during his days of fronting The Distance, but I am glad to know him now. Aside from appreciating the music, my fondness for verse is rewarded on Saying Grace. As on his last outing, …
reviewed Telling Time. February 11, 2012
posted in Music Matters
Telling Time
The artistry in Tanya Godsey’s Telling Time sets it apart. It is a thoughtful engagement with life befitting a Christian artist. Truth and grace, struggle and hope are expressed in subtle but rewarding …
Lutheran Theology (Doing Theology ))
The emphasis on our standing before God makes Lutheran Theology by Steven D. Paulson a significant book. “Luther said the ‘sum and substance,’ of Paul’s letter to the Romans ‘is …
Luke (N.T. Wright for Everyone Bible Study Guides)
One of my earliest memories as a new Christian was answering questions in a bible study book. Back in the late seventies, branding of popular Christian authors was not what it is today where you have …
reviewed Message in a Body. January 25, 2012
Message in a Body
The much-loved Baptist minister and prolific author, F. W. Boreham, wrote, "The man whose biography is not worth writing has never yet been born." While I agree with the sentiment, most people …
reviewed A Way To See In The Dark. December 26, 2011
A Way To See In The Dark
I listen to Jason Gray for the same reason that people might listen to Bob Dylan. He has a way with words. They take unexpected turns and are poetic. They are revealing and vulnerable.   It is …
The IVP Introduction to the Bible
If background and context are crucial to understanding the meaning of Scripture, The IVP Introduction to the Bible is an excellent quick reference for discovering it. Various contributors from the US …
reviewed Collage. December 18, 2011
posted in Music Matters
Listening to “L.O.V.E.” and “Collage,” the opening tracks on Collage by The Katinas, you might feel like you had wandered into a club setting. The electronic beats and programming …
reviewed Love Enough. December 06, 2011
posted in Music Matters
Love Enough
On Love Enough by Laura Kaczor (kuh-ZURE) it is quickly apparent that her music is easy to like, which is no small thing. I am all for artistry, but unbridled creativity can make for a difficult listen. …
reviewed re:creation - Steven Curtis Chapman. November 18, 2011
posted in Music Matters
re:creation - Steven Curtis Chapman
If Beauty Will Rise (2009) was the dark night of the soul, re:creation (2011) is like the dawn that grows brighter till the full light of day. This is the sound of hope rising: the winter is past; the …
reviewed First Leaf EP - Eden's Bridge. November 06, 2011
posted in Music Matters
First Leaf EP - Eden's Bridge
Scripture provides the order: first the natural, then the spiritual (1 Cor. 15:46). The apostle Paul makes this point in his discussion of the resurrection of the dead. The natural body, which comes first, …
reviewed The Winter Sings - CD Version. October 29, 2011
The Winter Sings - CD Version
For the first time in seven years Eden’s Bridge is back with their original lineup. After recording New Celtic Worship (2005), a one-off project for Maranatha! Music, the band took a break. To my …
reviewed Friending: Real Relationships in a Vi.... October 29, 2011
Friending: Real Relationships in a Virtual World
Something like disapproval crept into my heart when an out-of-town family member announced on Facebook that they were done using it as a means of communication. It was not the decision to abandon it that …
reviewed On the Altar of Love. October 10, 2011
On the Altar of Love
“‘If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?’” (Psalm 11:3 ESV). On the Altar of Love, Downhere goes back to the foundations of the Christian faith.   …
reviewed Sanctuary of the Soul: Journey into M.... September 15, 2011
Sanctuary of the Soul: Journey into Meditative
The need for discernment has never been greater. With so many winds of doctrine, one can easily be tossed about like the waves of the sea.       Having heard frequent warnings …
Greek Commentaries on Revelation (Ancient
Lately, a new thought has occupied my mind when reading the book of Revelation. Instead of focusing on its meaning, I want to see glory. Where else can you find such a monumental array of angels, supernatural …
reviewed I Will Praise You. August 04, 2011
I Will Praise You
I Will Praise You is a mature Rebecca St. James, which is reflected in the dignified photos on the CD artwork. It carries over into the words and music of each song. Newly married after a long and public …
Jesus, Paul and the People of God: A Theological
Jesus, Paul and the People of God: A Theological Dialogue with N. T. Wright serves as a valuable reminder that we all have our limitations. In appraising Wright on justification, Kevin Vanhoozer offers …
reviewed 1 Peter (IVP New Testament Commentary). July 01, 2011
1 Peter (IVP New Testament Commentary)
The biblical book of 1 Peter is a letter for our time. I. Howard Marshall conveys that with astute observation in 1 Peter, his commentary.   He believes the readers were “people who were …
Good News for Anxious Christians: 10 Practical
Good News for Anxious Christians by Phillip Cary reminds me of Decision Making and the Will of God by Garry Friesen and J. Robin Maxson. The latter challenged what the authors called the traditional view …
reviewed Just As I Am: The Hymns of Ira D Sankey. June 06, 2011
Just As I Am: The Hymns of Ira D Sankey
In the firmament of song leaders, Ira Sankey is one of the brightest stars. What Cliff Barrows and George Beverly Shea were to Billy Graham, Ira Sankey was to the great evangelist Dwight L. Moody. This …
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