Book Review: Girl, Wash Your Face

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Being a pastor is a high calling, but a very strange job.  And one of the strangest things I do is to read bad books. Not bad in the sense that they are poorly written, but bad in the sense that though they purport to be Christian resources they are so deeply flawed they are not just non-edifying, they are dangerous to the believers who read and are influenced by them. And I just read a doozy, Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis (published by Thomas Nelson).

I know that there was more buzz about this book a few months ago, but I actually wanted to take the time to read it, and besides, it is still the best selling Christian book according to the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association.Continue reading

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Book Picks (Non-Theology)

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Pastors are readers, there is no denying it. And sometimes we read things that aren’t theological or somehow related to what we are studying or preaching. Sometime we read for fun. So here are some fun read picks from the PS23 team.

John – A Hobbit, a Wardrobe and the Great War by Joseph Loconte

Two of my favorite fiction authors are J.R.R. Tolkein and C.S. Lewis (although The Chronicles of Narnia is not my favorite thing from Lewis). And I knew well that they were friends and met together, with the rest of the Inklings at the Eagle and Child pub and were fast friends.… Continue reading

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Five Life-Shaping Books

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Last week one of my fellow PS23 contributors sent me one of those annoying Facebook challenges, in this case it was to post a picture of a book that influenced my life, with no explanation, for 5 days.  And while, as a rule, I find things like this annoying, and ignore them, in this case I was intrigued to think through the five books that impacted my life.  I’m a book guy, I always have been (even as a hard partying unbeliever and even as a child) so it was an interesting exercise to think through the 5 books that really affected my life.… Continue reading

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An Updated Christmas Shopping List: Commentaries, Theologies, Reference, Oh My!

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Last year I posted here some recommendations for commentaries and other book sets people might want to buy for that pastor or seminary student in their life. It was in no particular order and it wasn’t exhaustive.

Two things happened again this year: people started sending me notes asking about this or that book as a gift and I also received my shipment of books from the Evangelical Publishing Association. I’m a judge in the Bible and Reference section for their annual Gold Medallion Awards (and I have been for about 15 years). Questions and these new additions to commentary series stimulated me to create some additions to last years sampling.… Continue reading

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Learning from The Forgotten Spurgeon

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the-forgotten-spurgeonOf the books I had the opportunity to read this year, Iain Murray’s The Forgotten Spurgeon stands out among them. Every time I read a book by Murray, I am greatly edified, and this time was no exception. At this point, it was the book I gained the most from reading in 2016. So, in this post I’d like to share some of the primary lessons I learned from it.

Originally published in 1966, The Forgotten Spurgeon looks to the controlling center of life and doctrine of Charles Haddon Spurgeon; the great Calvinistic, Baptist, Evangelical preacher of 19th C.… Continue reading

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