Tags: book review, commentary, Ruth, Ruth From Bitter to Sweet
RUTH, From Bitter to Sweet by John Currid
This book arrived in a pdf form first and I slowly began going through it while waiting for the book to arrive. I make no apologies for being a book person. I use and like my Kindle and have read other books in pdf form on my laptop but there is nothing like holding a book in your hands. Plus I like to write, underline and high light in my books.
This book was published by EP Books (www.epbooks.org) and came to me from Cross Focused Media (www.crossfocusedmedia.com). When beginning a book I go to the table of contents and the bibliography first. The table of contents reveals that the study will be divided among thirteen chapters. The author sees five main sections to the book of Ruth.
Part 1: Setting the scene (1:1-5)
Part 2: Naomi and her Moabite daughter-in-law (1:6-22)
Part 3: In the fields of Bethlehem (2:1-23)
Part 4: The scene at the threshing floor (3:1-18)
Part 5: Redemption (4:1-22)
The author’s breakdown of the book and outline are pretty good. I was looking forward to getting started. Now my personal complaint is that there is no bibliography and he uses end notes instead of footnotes. I prefer footnotes over endnotes anytime. I was surprised that there was no bibliography. Those are my personal preferences and do not take away from the book.
In each chapter the author takes some Scripture and explains its meaning. Then he closes the chapters with “Points to Ponder.” I like the way he does this. The Points to Ponder are pretty good and the reader will find some truth to apply in their lives.
Overall I liked this commentary. It would make a good gift for your pastor. I am passing it on to our Women’s Sunday School class teacher to look over. I have talked with her about it and asked her to consider using it in her class during the Spring Quarter of 2013. The thirteen chapters lend themselves to being used in a Sunday School class or small group. I would recommend it being used in either situation. Yes, I did ask for the book back when she is finished looking it over. It will go on my shelf for future use.
I received this book for free and was not asked for a favorable review.
Tags: book review, cross focused reviews, mission of God, missional, missional moves
Missional Moves by Rob Wegner and Jack Magruder
This is a part of the Exponential Series of books for the modern church. It is intended to encourage and equip church leaders and others who are serving in their churches. This book contains three main parts and fifteen chapters. Both of the authors serve on the staff of the same church and seem to know each other pretty well.
There is a chapter for endnotes and the authors have done some research but most of it is with modern writers. There is a quote from Roland Allen in chapter 2 and personally I was glad to see it and wish there were more from practitioners like him or from his era to the present. There is a wealth of information available for the reader.
The research is not very deep; academic or based in theology. Most of the book is experiential. There is very little balance here. I am sure the authors mean well, but I would choose building off of Roland Allen rather than Alan Hirsch.
They describe their style as “a quirky mix of metaphors and pictures that they use to help us make sense of all of this.” They close by using an illustration from The Book of Five Rings (yes, I have read the book) and I was surprised to see its use here. I am not sure that I agree with their final closing point, but I will give them credit for trying. A reference to samurai always gets my attention.
Here is the table of contents:
PART 1// PARADIGM SHIFT
- From Saved Souls to Saved Wholes
- From Missions to Mission
- From My Tribe to Every Tribe
- From OR to AND
- From the Center to the Margins
PART 2// CENTRALIZED SHIFT
Local Churches on Mission
- From Top Down to Bottom Up
- From Diffused to Focused
- From Transactional to Transformational Partnerships
- From Relief to Development
- From Professionals to Full Participation
PART 3// DECENTRALIZED SHIFT
The People of God On Mission
- From Formal to Fractal Leadership
- From Institution to Movement
- From Mega and Multi to Mega, Multi, and Micro
- From “We Can Do It; You Can Help” to “You Can Do It; We Can Help”
- From Great Commission to Great Completion
The book will challenge your thinking and in the notes concerning a quote and position in chapter 12 they use the words, “we know this is a massive claim. You’ll need to dig in and decide for yourself.” I appreciate the honesty and there is much that the reader will have to think about and decide for themselves.
Overall I liked Part 1 the best. A lot of what they are saying has been said in other books, but I think they are sincere in wanting to get the “church” to live or act like the “church.” I cannot give this book a favorable recommendation. In the subject of “Mission of God” or “missional” there are better books available for studying and applying. I received this book for free from Cross Focused Reviews and was not obligated to give it a favorable review.