Book Review: Missional Moves

December 7, 2012 at 2:28 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | 2 Comments
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Missional Moves by Rob Wegner and Jack Magruder

Missional Moves

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

Missional Imagination

  1. From Saved Souls to Saved Wholes
  2. From Missions to Mission
  3. From My Tribe to Every Tribe
  4. From OR to AND
  5. From the Center to the Margins

PART 2// CENTRALIZED SHIFT

Local Churches on Mission

  1. From Top Down to Bottom Up
  2. From Diffused to Focused
  3. From Transactional to Transformational Partnerships
  4. From Relief to Development
  5. From Professionals to Full Participation

PART 3// DECENTRALIZED SHIFT

The People of God On Mission

  1. From Formal to Fractal Leadership
  2. From Institution to Movement
  3. From Mega and Multi to Mega, Multi, and Micro
  4. From “We Can Do It; You Can Help” to “You Can Do It; We Can Help”
  5. From Great Commission to Great Completion

Notes

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.

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Book Review: A Study Commentary on 1 Kings

November 30, 2012 at 2:53 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | 2 Comments
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A Study Commentary on 1 Kings by John A. Davies

The chance to review this book was quite appealing to me. For one, it was a commentary and they are not usually available to review. Second, it was on a book of the Old Testament that I have read many times and preached some sermons from. Third, I figured I would use it again in the future as I studied or prepared sermons and teaching lessons. So I was looking forward to receiving this commentary.

When I pick up a commentary for the first time I usually look at the table of contents and the bibliography first. Maybe I should say I look at them carefully. Everyone does not start there but that is where I start.

When glancing through the table of contents the reader will notice that every chapter of 1 Kings is covered by its own chapter of study in the commentary. The chapters are studied verse by verse. Definitions and explanations are given to help the student understand the Scripture. The chapters are broken into sections of Scripture. Each section ends with suggested ideas of application.

End notes are used and I am not a big fan of end notes. There are approximately 21 pages of end notes after 1 Kings 22 is covered. The author has certainly done his homework and the reader will benefit from it.

The second thing I look at when considering a study book is the bibliography. This bibliography is approximately 20 pages long. I was quite impressed by the breadth of the author’s research. I am not a scholar, but I am a pastor who is currently working on a doctorate and I appreciate the work that has gone into this volume. The author’s work will benefit the reader.

The following quote is from the preface. “While aimed primarily at pastors and students, the commentary should be of benefit to the general reader who wants to understand better the character of this portion of Scripture — its literary subtlety and surprising theological richness” (p. 9). I do believe this work would be of value to pastors and teachers. It will help them study 1 Kings and complement what may already be in their library.

I do not think the average person who attends church will even pick this book up and look at let alone read it. The subject and the 464 pages would probably frighten them. The only real criticism I have is that my review copy came in pdf form and not an actual book that I could put on my shelf. I do recommend this commentary to pastors and teachers. I received this book for free for review purposes without obligation to give a favorable review.

Bible Review: The Common English Bible, Genesis 1:1

December 13, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I haven’t reviewed any books in a while and thought I would get started doing that again. I was given the opportunity to receive a copy of the Common English Bible (www.CommonEnglishBible.com) and thought that would be a good way to start reviewing again.

I never heard of this translation before so I was a little interested in it. When I first got saved and started studying the Bible I used the King James Version. While in college I tried the New American Standard Version. Then while in seminary (the first time) I switched to the New International Version. I have used the NIV in my preaching and teaching for many years. I am also familiar with the English Standard Version. I own other translations as well.

My plan is to begin by posting the same verse using different translations. This way the reader can compare the CEB with other common and widely used translations. I will post once a week for a while and will work in some information on the team that produced the CEB. The background on the translation team will have much to say about the translation.

Some personal preferences first off. It is not a red letter edition and I do prefer red letter Bibles. That is just my personal preference though. The Bible itself is nice looking. It is simple and two-tone in color with “Holy Bible” etched in the upper right. It really is a good looking Bible. The print size is good for reading. The color and weight of the paper are both very good. There is not much room in the margins to write in if you want to take notes.

There are footnotes describing words or subjects but there are no verse references to other passages. To me, that is a big negative because I think people should study the Bible and not just read it. I don’t know if the CEB may be available as a study Bible or with references in other styles. The CEB was copyrighted in 2011.

The table of contents and list of information in the beginning of the CEB are helpful. I am looking forward to going through the CEB and comparing it with other versions. You can learn more about it at: www.CommonEnglishBible.com.

For my review I chose to start at the beginning of the Bible. I am comparing the CEB with the New International Version (NIV); the New American Standard Bible (NASB); the English Standard Version (ESV) and the King James Version (KJV).

(1)When God began to create the heavens and the earth- (Genesis 1:1 CEB)

(1)In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 NIV)

(1)In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 NASB)

(1)In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 ESV)

(1)In the beginning God created the Heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1 KJV)

Four of the translations are pretty similar in their presentation of the Hebrew translated into English. The CEB is a little different and leaves the sentence open. This may seem like a slight change, but we will have to wait and compare other Scriptures. A deeper study of the Hebrew would be helpful. Next week I will be comparing a familiar New Testament Scripture.

I received the CEB without charge for the purpose of reviewing it.

Much GRACE and peace to you,

Bill

(Romans 15:13; Psalm 21:6)

Book Review: 40 Days to Better Living Optimal Health

August 17, 2011 at 2:42 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I just posted a book review that was done by my wife. The book is by Dr. Scott Morris.

Book Review: From the Library of A.W. Tozer

April 29, 2011 at 2:09 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I just posted a review of From the Library of A.W. Tozer by James Stuart Bell. You can read it on my Book Reviews page.

Book Review: Jesus In The Present Tense

April 25, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I have just posted a review of Warren Wiersbe’s Jesus In The Present Tense. You can read it by clicking on my Book Review page.

Book Review: Health Care You Can Live With

February 24, 2011 at 1:02 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I’ve just posted a book review by my wife Kim Mazey.

Morris, Dr. Scott with Susan Martins Miller, Health Care You Can Live With, Discover Wholeness in Body and SpiritUhrichsville, OH: Barbour Publishing, Inc. 2011. 254 pp.

If I could describe this book with one word it would be, “encouraging.”  I appreciated Dr. Morris’ book and as a health care worker for more than 30 years I have seen many changes in the health of the general public as well as the ways we address them. …………….

You can read the rest of the review on my Book Review page.

Book Review: Stand Firm in the Faith, an Exposition of 2 Corinthians

January 19, 2011 at 4:05 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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I was looking forward to receiving this commentary and going through it even though I am not preaching from 2 Corinthians right now. 2 Corinthians is one of my favorite New Testament books of the Bible and one that opens up the Apostle Paul’s heart for ministry.

You can read the full review and excerpts by going to my Book Review page. This is a commentary that I highly recommend.

Book Review: Indigenous Church Planting

January 12, 2011 at 4:49 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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On my Book Review page near the bottom I have a summary of “Indigenous Church Planting”, by Charles Brock, published by Church Growth International, Neosho, MO. 1994. 272 pages. ISBN 1-885504-27-6.

If you have any interest in church planting you should add this book to your library, read it and learn from it.

If you go to the Book Review page the review is near the bottom and this picture is on the left side at the beginning of the summary.

Book Review: Pause for Power by Warren W. Wiersbe

December 18, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Posted in Book Reviews | Leave a comment
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Wiersbe, Warren W. Pause for Power. Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook; 2010. 368 pp.

I just added this review to my Book Review page.

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