Monday, March 28, 2011

The problem of sin and temptation

Resist Temptation & Sin

Submit yourselves then to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7-10

Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body. Therefore honor God with your body. 1 Cor 6:18

If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth no sacrifice for sins is left.. Heb 10:26

Do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature. Gal5:13

You were running a good race. Who cut in and kept you from obeying the truth. Gal5:7

So if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you do not fall. No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.


Do not be deceived: no sexually immoral people, idolaters, adulterers, male prostitutes, homosexuals, thieves, greedy people, drunkards, revilers, or swindlers will inherit God’s kingdom. 1cor6:9

Come to your right mind and sin no more 1 cor 15:34
Free Will: The effects of our choices:

People are not robots- they make free will choices and the bad choices of others impact others, even the innocent, for better or for worse. Not many people consider that this is the cause of much of the evil in this world. Even the innocent will blame God rather than sinful man who make bad choices. And furthermore, what about natural disasters a.k.a "acts of God", accidents and other things that are seemingly beyond the control of human beings? Regrettably there is a lot of bad in this world and understandably that that is a major impediment to belief for so many people. And is it any wonder why so many people cannot get past the fact that many innocent people really do suffer such as children, the terminally ill, the impoverished.

Obviously this is an imperfect world and it is not always true that we will prosper. In fact suffering in some form or another seems to be the rule rather than prospering for most of the human population.

Perhaps the purpose we are here is to suffer and have faith?

It wont be easy for many of us in this lifetime, that's for sure but it will be worth it in the end. There is no guarentee to prosper in this wordly imperfect world. The odds are aainst us. There is no justice in this lifetime and we must endure with faith and look for the world to come.

Some people have no wordly comfort except the knowledge that God is with those who mourn and that in heaven he has many mansions

Though many in this world or rich and well off, most are not; many are victims of crime, poverty, war, disease. Even babies and children

suffer at the hands of others, yet did they commit any wrong doing?

I do not put trust in prosperity in this world. Simply be thankful for what you do have and await the next world to come. In this world, do not expect to have prosperity. If you do, then good for you but dont expect it. God's word and friendship is sufficient.

Sometimes God's answer is simply "no" and we must suffer.

Suffering isn't a punishment it is a fact of life in this sinful evil world.

Everyday there are crimes of war, innocent children abused and murdered and other atrocities. So then how can those people prosper in this world? All they have is God's comfort in the next world to come

and not to fear those who harm the body. So many are complacent in their easy lives that they have no desire to seek truth.

Yet I say even those who suffer must still humble themselves and accept God's friedship. When you live in this world long enough and become aware of your surroundings, you lose that naive idea that those who believe in God will materially prosper.

God wants us to have faith in times of bad as well as good

and to say "not my will but your will be done" for better or worse.

Just like the old testament prophet, he did not even withhold his beloved son from God.

Even in suffering, terminal illness, death, & loss, God's answer may still be simply no. Sometimes we must suffer

and like Jesus in the garden of gethsemane, even though we ask for the cup of suffering to be taken, sometimes God's will is for us to endure no matter how great that pain or suffering may be...we must say God's will be done. Yes, that is an impediment for many people to have faith in God and those are exactly the people we must try to reach with God's word.

The harvest is ready and waiting. WEe must search through much chaff just to find a little wheat but its there if you dig deep enough and long enough. Be thankful and humble and willing to accept God's gift of grace because God is always deserving of praise.

There will be that day that comes- when God's kingdom comes to us and he shall wipe away every tear and the lame shall walk and everything will be perfect. We need to stand firm and ready while we are on earth to fight the devil's schemes and snares

and dont let the devil get a foothold, dont get angry, bitter or resentful. Have courage because Jesus has overcome the world.

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Exploring the Bible: The Challange of James

Exploring the Bible: The Challenge of James

The letter from James is often an overlooked book. Small in size, it can be read in a mere twenty minutes. Nevertheless, it is packed with a wealth of relevant information. It is a challenging book. Not challanging as in being difficult to understand- on the contrary! I believe the book of James is so simple to understand. While it is clear, and simple, it is difficult to actually obey nevertheless. That is where the challange rests- actually obeying and following the words of the Lord. That is what fascinates me. If James were to have a title, I believe that title would have something to do with the condemnation of hypocracy. If I had to give it a title- a suitable one would be would be: "A Lesson in Integrity- Freedom from the world and hypocracy". Although on the surface God's word seems to be restrictive, it is liberating. Being friends with the world may seem to be easy but in the end, it leads to death.God knows what is best for us, in His wisdom. In contrast, our humanly wisdom is very dim or clouded. Therefore we must put our trust in the Lord. For example, there are specifics in James that are so contrary to the ways of this sinful godless world we live in. For example the sensless accumulation of wealt is condemned. Double mindendedness (which mean dishonesty), pride, competativeness, anger, revenge, slander (untrue accustations/ gosspip), quarrels/ fights and coveting (which means jealousy) are also condmened as well as many other "human" traits that are accepted in this this world and society. Think about the specific examples that I listed and consider how common they are in today. Everyone is guilty of at least one of hese things if not many more! I like this verse: James 5:1-5 Now listen you rich people weep and wail because of the misery that is coming upon you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days.....You have lived on earth in luxery and self indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter! Think about the emphasis placed on prosperity and wealth by sociey and the media: on TV, in movies and magazines and just in general!!! Think about how many chase after wealth and material possessions like expensive homes, cars, money and other things. Well God condemns this single minded pursuit of wealth!! Conside how wealth is portrayed in a glamerous and appealing way in movies and TV. In today's society, the poor and underclass are treated as if they are second class citisens. Well that is the way of this world, and God wants us to have no part of it.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Life of Andrew Jackson Edited by John S. Jenkins, A.M.

As a blogger for New Leaf Press, it was a suprise to recieve a copy of  Life of Andrew Jackson edited by John S. Jenkins, A.M.- which I did not request- (along with a book I did request) published by Attic Books.   This book appears to be an authentic looking reprint of the original 1850 publication by Geo H. Derby and Co complete with its authentic replica of the cover, the reproduction of the original illustrations as well as the type writer styled  font.  This legthy 390 page book, with its small font- is more of a reference work,  appropiate for a library or institution rather than a personal library. Furthermore, it makes quite an attractive addition to any bookshelf for anyone interested in classic books.

 If you can understand and appreciate that "it rarely falls to the happy lot of a statesman to recieve such unanimous applause from the heart of a nation.  Duty to the dead demands that, on this occasion, the course of measures should not pass unnoticed, in the progress of which his vigor of character most clearly appeared, and his conflict with opposing parties was most violent and protracted"  (page 212)- then this book will be sure to capture your interest.  Otherwise, for most modern readers, this work makes for some dry, yet rather informative reading- providing the reader with all the authentic details of the less than politically correct, controversial life of the historical figure Andrew Jackson.  Unless you are a scholar on Andrew Jackson, or find that you must do a term paper on Andrew Jackson for your American History class, you might not want to read this book.  But, if you do find yourself in the position of needing to write a research paper on Andrew Jackson, then this book would make a perfect authentic source.

Personally, I am unsure of the intended market for this particular book.  I feel it is most appropriate for the reference section of an instiution or a library rather than for personal reading.  For the casual reader I could not, and would not reccomend this book..  The most appropriate target audience, for this book would possibly be an historian in American history or a college student who needed to write a dissertation or term paper.  As a blogger I recieved this book for the purpose of writing a review and the opinion expressed is my own.

The Ale Boy's Feast by Jeffrey Overstreet

The Ale Boy's Feast by Jeffrey Overstreet, is a fantasy fiction novel- the fourth novel in "The Auralia Thread" series. Although this story can be enjoyed independently, it would have been helpful to identify this as book #4 of a series somewhere on the front cover.  This book is best appreciated when read as part of the series, nevertheless.

This detailed 375 page novel brings to life an entire new world of fantasy for the reader.  Rich in detail with well developed characters and scenes, any reader who enjoys the fantasy genre will be sure to enjoy this book as well. In true fantasy fashion, this book comes complete with a well detailed map, called "The Expanse", as well a background chapter and character guide. The typical cast of characters and are included as well: the royalty- a king, queen,magicians, musicians, and other commonly recognised midevil characters.   The mission and moral completes this fantasy genre novel.  This book takes some time to read- with its characters, sub plots and scenes- in order to follow along with the storyline this is not a fiction work that can be skimmed in two hours.  For those readers not into fantasy novels, or perhaps new to the fantasy genre- getting through this book will be a challange or perhaps a chore. As a blogger for Water Brook, I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing a review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A Conversation With God by Alton Gansky

A Conversation With God: If You Could Ask God Any Question What Would It Be? by Alton Gansky, is a a simplified book of theology written in an easy to read question and answer format addressing common questions of new believers and non religious readers about bible beliefs.

This very unique book is written from the first person point of view as if God himself, as well as other notable biblical characters of the old and new testaments: including Jesus,  Luke, Peter, Eve, Jeremiah, Micah, James and even Judas Iscariat- were answering the questions directly. This book is written as if the words and answers to the questions presented- are coming directly from God himself- and from other biblical characters. One issue of concern is that some readers may in fact become confused, perhaps erroneously attributing Alton Gansky's theology to God himself- as well as to the other personalities listed.  While this particular method of communicating biblical knowledge may be questionable or even heretical for some readers, it does make for entertaining and engaging reading for those new to the Christian faith.

This book makes a good resource for any new believer or for those who wish to be introduced to Christian beliefs.  There are some theological issues that need to be addressed, neverthless- in the chapter of salvation, based on Judas' response to the question,  the book implies that salvation can be lost.  Furthermore the question on abortion does not specifically address the issue of abortion, but vaguely discusses the issue of free will and choice.  The question on homosexuality is handled in an appropriate, non offensive theological and politically correct manner.  Some questions, such as "Why are there two sexes?" are answered based on the author's own conjecture of the bible, rather than on bible theology.  Nevertheless, this book, overall, presents a good overview of basic biblical beliefs and makes a good starting point for anyone who wishes to investigate the bible and Christian beliefs.  For deeper theology, and deeper answers to life's questions, I'd refer the reader to the works of Alcorn, C.S. Lews, Augustine or Aquinas.  As a blogger for booksneeze, I recieved a copy of this book from Thomas Nelson publishers for the purpose of writing this review. The opinions expressed are my own.

A Deeper Kind of Calm by Linda Dillow

A Deeper Kind of Calm: Steadfast Faith In the Midst of Adversity by Linda Dillow is a source of motivation and strength for anyone going through a difficult and traumatic time in life.  Even though Linda Dillow's own anecdotes seem trivial, and in at least two references in the book, she is vague and less than forthcoming when alluding to own personal issues and pain as reflected  by the following passage with the unidentified mysterious "someone": "I've grieved over a conflict with someone close to me" (page 18), Linda Dillow recognises, nevertheless, that many of the readers may be going through more intense and painful personal experiences such as terminal illness, divorce, death.  She understands that regardless of the issue, that the pain an idividual goes through can not be minimised or diminished.  

This book correlates the pain and hardship as expressed by the writers of the psalms, of the bible's old testament, with the pain that we go through in our lifetimes.  Reading through the psalms, you will not doubt that these ancient writers shared our own deepest pains, turmoils and fears. Ancient problems and hardhips were no less traumatic than the modern day painful experiences we have in our own lives.  Dillow chooses to focus on a few specific psalms, verse by verse, to illustrate how the ancient poets followed through to turn their pain into blessing, thereby empowering the reader with the ability to change his or her own pain to blessings as well.  Also included is a bible study by which the reader can actually write down his or her own thoughts.  Journaling is a theraputic means by which to address one's own pain and problems- and the guided journal expercise included in this book will prove to be helpful when facing even the most difficult of life issues. 

As a blogger for Navpress I recieved this book for the purpose of writing a review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

31 Days of Power by Ruth Myers

31 Days of Power: Learning to Live in Spiritual Victory by Ruth Myers with Warren Myers, is a pocket sized devotional book based on the application of scripture to one's personal life.  Each day has its own motivational theme followed by short passages inspired by specific scripture,  The actual references to the bible are included so that the reader may look up nthe specifc verse.  Included are some lines of empty space to allow for writing down notes or for personal reflection. If one actually were serious about starting a journal based on what he/she read from this devotional book, then a seperate notebook would be more appropriate as the lines provided are not sufficient for a serious amount of personal journaling.

This book is a great resource if you are in need of quick inspiration.  The biblical verses cited aren't recorded word for word, but paraphrased into a prayer styled format.  The passages as well as the biblical verses by which they are based are relevant to everyday life and are sure to inspire and empower the reader. In my opinion, the only downside is that the biblical passages are not cited word for word but rather are simplified within a paraphase of commentary.  Nevertheless for some readers, this may make the passages and messages easier to understand. 

Overall I believe this is a great book for anyone.  For those who take this book seriously and who take the time to reflect and meditate on its message, this is certain to be a life changing book.  As a blogger for Multnomah publishers I recieved this book for the purposes of writing a review and the opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, March 14, 2011

The Fight of Our Lives by William J. Bennett and Seth Leibsohn

The Fight of Our Lives: Knowing the Enemy, Speaking the Truth & Choosing to Win the War Against Radical Islam  by William J. Bennett and Seth Leibsohn,  "is a cultural call to arms addressing our politicians, our citizens, our academies, our think tanks and schools.... We focus on a notion too little heard these days: that there is a war, it is serious, and it can- quite simpmy- end us..... Our focus is the nature of the threat we face and the nature of the response we do not currently possess.  It is a focus more on us than our enemy." (page xv- introduction) and furthermore, "There is no such thing as a safe place from Islamic terror, not aborad, and not anywhere in America" page 2.   Ironically, in light of the terroristic attack of 9/11, America has become complascent and ineffective- and in contrast to previous wars in American and world history, political leadershipand effectiveness have weakened and crumbled.  America is vulnerable - in terms of its military strength and moral resolve.
This book cites several examples of our nation's ineffectiveness and tolerance with the extremist Islamic threat, for example, Fort Hood.  As a nation we have not followed through on terrosrist threats.  Our culture of acceptance simply does not recognize the threat and therfore responds in a passive, dismissive way.  The initial resove of our nation which was onbious after 9/11 has dissapated, resulting in "moral confusion". page 19 This book is a great resource for anyone interested in political events, and more specifically, about American policy in regards to terrorist threats.  It provides an explanation of the ineffectiveness and passivness we see in society today. As a blogger for booksneeze, I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, March 7, 2011

True Faced by Bill Thrall, Bruce McNicol and John Lynch

True Faced: Trust God and Others With Who You Really Are by Bill Thrall, Bruce McNicol and John Lynch makes a nunique and unexpected distinction bewteen the concepts of trying to please God and trusting God.  The book explains that many believers or Christians seek to please God, yet can never obtain that goal, and in the fruitless pursuit of trying to use works to obtain merit, they lose out on the ability to trust in God.  In contrast, this book explains that as believers we should strive to trust God rather than relying on our own works to merit God's favor.  In fact, as scripture sasy, we can not obatin salvation by our works- the best of which are simply filthy rags before God's perfect standards.  It is by grace we are saved and not through our own works and merits.  In fact, our fruitless efforts to please God are often based on our own pride as the motivating factor.  In contrast we are called to humility and to humbly accept God's undeserved gift of grace and salvation.

This book covers relevant issues such as the desire to keep up appearances, trusting God, as well as the concepts of grace, repentance, love and forgiveness.  This specific book is considered to be the experience edition, which may be adapted to a study group.  This book is interactive in that it has discovery sections that engage the reader to meditate and refelect on the principals discussed.  As a blogger for Navpress I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

Living in the Companionship of God by Jan Johnson

Living in the Companionship of God: A Personal Retreat Guide by Jan Johnson is a bible study which guides the reader on a journey for develkoping a stronger relationship with God.  This interactive books requires the reader's particpation through the guided reflection pieces and suggestions.  Divided into seven conversations or chapters- each section is dedicated towards a specific aspect in a relationship and in communication with God.  Throughout the book specific activities are suggested for the reader to meditate on.  Relevant biblical verses from the bible are included as well, providing the basis for the truths that are communicated in this book.

This book is based on the popular concept of the spiritual or religious retreat.  While most people have neither the time or money to simply get away from their daily lives to an isolated, scenic spot to reflect and mediate, the reader can replicate the spiritual retreat in his or her own home or private space with the aid of this book as a guide.  In fact this book can be used to create one's do it yourself at home retreat- and if the reader is motivated enough and serious enough to follow and persever with the book's suggestions, the same spiritual goals may be achieved.  As a blogger for Navpress publishers I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing a review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Live Like You Mean It by T.J. Addington

Live Like You Mean It: The 10 Crucial Questions That Will Help You- Clarify Your Purpose, Live Intentionally, Make the Most of the Rest of Your Life  by T.J. Addington is a self help resource that will help the reader get the most of out life.  Addington speaks directly to the reader offering valuable biblical based advise for achieving maximum fulfillment in one's life.  This guide empowers the reader in offering life changing ideas and solutions to help one focus on what's most important in life.  In today's modern society its very easy to waste one's life in the engagement of less than meaningful pursuits.  Consider the time for example, that one wastes watching television reruns- it makes one wonder how fulfilling such an activity is.  This book helps in making priorities and meaningful decisions in life.

There are many self help books on the market. What makes this book distinct is that it is written from a biblical perspective and not simply a worldy or psychological point of view.  Contrary to what many may believe, spiritual truths endure, and by living a life in accordance with God's standards- that is how spirtual fulfillment and satisfaction may be attained. This book is motivating and empowering with the power to act as a catalyst in improving one's life.  As a blogger for Navpress I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.

Little Promises for Success by Jim Tressel

Little Promises for Success: Promises from God on achieving your best by Jim Tressel, is a small pocket sized motivational gift book.  Although presented as a gift book- with its cushioned hard cover, thick two tone graphic pages, this small sized book contains a lot of biblical wisdom and practical advise.  Contrary to the world's common sense, the bible offers valuable insight and wisdom for achieving fulfillment and success. This 204 page book is divided into three parts each related to a different concept of success covering topics such as attitude, contentment, discipline, integrety and setbacks.  Each individual topic has a few relevant biblical verses for the particular topic side by side with a paragraph sized piece of daily reading.  A scripture index is included in the back of the book. 

This book would make the perfect motivational gift for a friend or loved one- and unlike other gift books which usually sit on a coffee table or book shelf, this one is even better if it is actually read.  There are many memorable and relevant biblical verses that are sure to appeal to any reader.  As a blogger for Tyndale publishers I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing a review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

One Month To Live by Kerry & Chris Shook

One Month To Live: Twenty Days To A No- Regrets Life by Kerry & Chris Shook is marketed as a thirty day program , self- help book for life changing journey. Although this book is entriely appropriate for anyone facing a terminal illness, this book is also intended for any reader whatsoever regardless of his or her health or life span.  This book motivates and empowers the reader to live life deliberately and morally regardless of religious beliefs or lack thereof.  

For those readers to take this book seriously, who take the time to read this book and apply it to their own lives- this book can be life changing, addressing crucial areas of mending relationships and making more efficient use of one's personal time.  This book offers valuable practical advise for sorting out and making priorities.  For example if you wre to find your time here on earth was limited, would you choose to waste your remianing time sitting around passively watching television re runs?  Or would you spend your remaining time stewing in anger, seeking revenge for past hurts and wrong?  Probably not... and if that's the case this book offers constructive, realistic and relevant alternatives for making one's life more meaningful and satisfying regardless of how many days you have left.  This book is not about booking that expensive vacation cruise you always wanted or purusing the ideal career or purchasing an expensive Coach bag or dream car.  It's not about achieving material goals or wants- and its not about satisfying one's own greed.  its about pursuing eternal lasting and meaningful treasures: its about mending relationshsips, pursuing spititual and moral satisfaction and its aboub savoring the special moments and times that so many take for granted.  If you are tiured of your old world view and find that materialism and the superficial way of today's fast paced greedy society no longer works for you than this is the perfect book for you.

As a blogger for Waterbrook Multnomah bloggers I recieved this book for the purpose of writing a review.  Teh opinions expressed in this review are my own

Exploring the World Of Biology By John Hudson Tiner

Exploring the World Of Biology: From Mushrooms to Complex Life Forms By John Hudson Tiner is a fascinationg science guide for any young reader who has an interest science, and nature.  This book is not a stand alone text book, although it is marketed as a biology text for the homeschooled market, but rather a good fact filled suppliment to any science course.  This soft cover 153 page book is not exaustive as it does not thorougly cover all the biological topics that a traditional text book would cover.  Instead, this book contains indivdual articles on various biological related topics, inclus=dingt insects, reptiles and digestion.  The topics jump around and are diverse- and are best read as seperate and independent articles rather. The book is analagous to a science magazine or journal for young readers rather than an exaustive. complete biology text book.  There are also black and white photographs and illustrations within the text as well.  Each chapter also includes study questions at the end.  A unique chapter is included which discusses the role of frauds, hoaxes and wishful thinking in the promotion of many scientific theories that are often purported as fact among many scientists and secular schools.  This informative chapter included information that more often is left out of traditional science books and text bookd.  This is a chapyter you will certainly never find in a public school science text!  As a blogger for Master Books I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Dragons: Legends and Lore of Dinosaurs

Dragons: Legends and Lore of Dinosaurs published by Master Books, is a cross between a gift book and a science/ history book.  This very impressive full color, beautifully illustrated, interactive 3-D hard cover book covers the mysths of dragons and compares and contrasts myth from reality and fact from fiction.  It is interesting to not that the fables of dragons originate from the reality of dinosaurs.

Many unique 3-D details are contained within this book- envelopes open to reveal pull out-  historical inserts of dragon myths from around the world, pullout pamphlets and mini books contain additional information, artic;es and illustrations as well.  Also included are reproductions of ancient art and literature as well as flip open pages and windows with realistically drawn artwork rather than simplistic cartoon art. 

Biblical origins of the dragin myths and of dinosaurs are also portrayed and explained in this book.  Basically a quote contained on page 16 sums up the thesis of this book---this book "dissects common mysths of the bible- dragons were not magical or even mysterious.  They are simply dinosaurs, existing in a world with men and women who preserved these encounters in legend, artifcats and oral tradition". This unique view merits serious consideration.  Not only is this an entrataining well made gift book sure to appeal to anyone interested in fantasy and dragons, it also has a message as well.  As a blogger I recieved a copy of this book from Master Books for the purpose of writing this review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Our Created Moon By Dan DeYoung and John Whitecomb

Our Created Moon: Earth's fascinating Neighbor By Dan DeYoung and John Whitecomb is an impressive new full color, fully illustrated science text book for children. The illustrations and photographs contained in this book makes exploration of the moon entertaining as well as educational for any young reader.  This book is one of many new emerging books in the science genre of books for young readers which is sure to appeal to any reader with an interest in space exploration or atronomy.  This book includes almost everything you would want to learn about the moon including: physical descriptions and geography of the moon, the moon in historu and literature and astronomy facts. Also included are activities and a flip book of the moon's phases.  There is also an appendix and hands on activities/ experiment ideas.

 What makes this book different from other science books is that it is written from a biblical perspective and not a secular point of view.  For example, the assumption of the writers of this book is that biblical creation is considered to be factual.  Also the moon and its place in biblical scripture is also covered as well.  This book shows that science and biblical fact need not conflict with one another.  This unique book is a great addition to the science and astronomy books already on the market for young readers.  As a blogger for New Leaf press, I recieved this book, published by Master Books for the purpose of writing this review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Finding the Favor of God by Dr. Ronnie Floyd

Finding the Favor of God: A Discovery That Will Change Your Life by Dr. Ronnie Floyd, published by New Leaf Press, is a self- help/ motivational book that shows the reader the importance of seeking God's favor in order to recieve blessings in life.  Somewhat related to prosperity preaching, this book focuses on recieving blessings and obtaining favorable or positive things in life.  The author systematically discusses the concept of God's favor and blessings and the importance of God's favor and how to obtain God's favor.  There are three main sections to this book: an introduction to the concept of God's favor, how to find or achieve God's favor and thirdly, positioning oneself to maximise the potential to recieve God's favor.  This book is analagous to an instruction manual of finding God's favor with the simplistic formual that if you follow a few steps, in return you will recueve favor and blessings from God.

This book is simple and speaks directly to the reader as if the reader were having a one on one personal conversation with the author.  This eady to read book sperates relevant points and quotes and uses a question format and subtitloes to brak up blocks of easily digestible text.  The reader is walked step by step through the importance of God's favor and God's blessings in a simple and almost formulaic process.  The end of the book includes scripture passages relevant to God's favor and blessings.  As a blogger for New Leaf press I recieved this book for the purpose of writing a review.  The opinions expressed in this review are my own.

Sequin Bible- ICB translation

As a blogger for I had the opportunity to review the Sequin Bible- ICB translation for children, by Thomas Nelson Publishers. At first glance, the bible is impressively decorated with pink cloth binding and sequins.  I am sure the cover will appeal to any young girl- but you can not judge a book by its cover.
Though the ICB translation is specifically marketed for children , as an easy to understand modern version, it is a good resource for parents and other adults as well as children. I believe that many adult readers could benefit from a bible in simple easy to understand language. Obviously, as this particular ICB is marketed to appeal to a younger- female audience, many adults may not prefer to carry arround this boldy bejweled pink bible to church or bible study no matter how eccentric you are. Therefore you may prefer to read it in the privacy of your own bedroom, unless, of course, you covered the bible with a stretchy, stately, mature, navy blue book sox. Thankfully for us mature folk: parents, grandparents, business professionals and college students, etc., there are many good easy to understand, modern versions that we as adults can choose from.

Even though older translations such as the King James Version may be traditional, beautiful and poetically written, if the reader can not understand the antiquated language, then reading it will be of little benefit for the reader. In fact, strict reliance on older versions by some religious institutions is at a great disservice to the membership of the church. A sample of this translation style- the ICB version- is illustrated by the verse in 2Corninthians10:13 - “But we will not brag about things outside the work that was given us to do. We will limit our bragging to the work that God gave us. And this work includes our work with you.” Clearly this is a good translation for children as well as adults to understand. In contrast, this is the KJV: “But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you.” It is more likely a child would be more receptive, and many adults for that matter, to the ICB version than the KJV.

One thing I would like to change is the actual formatting of the text of this bible. Considering that the intended reader is a child, I believe the font size is way too small. Furthermore, the text passages would be better if they were broken up by passage headings/ titles as is common with other translations. Additionally, some graphics, even minimal graphics such as the use of bold fonts and side bars would add more appreal. Other than the inclusion of color insert pages and a cool cover, this basically looks like a pew style bible that you would find in the pew of a church.

This bible is not like a bedtime story book of selected bible stories, it is the actual complete bible text. So, if you are looking for a simple quick bedtime story book, this isn't for you. But, on the other hand if you wish to find an easy to understand complete version of the bible that will bring the words of the bible to life for your child...and even yourself, then this is a great choice. As a blogger for booksneeze, I wrote this review and the opinions exp[ressed are my own.

One Race One Blood by Ken Ham and A. Charles Ware

One Race One Blood by Ken Ham and A. Charles Ware published by Master Books, is a challanges society's perceptions of racism and the true origins of racist beliefs in today's society.  This book correlates racism with the theories of evolution- specifically Daranism.  The authors explain that Darwin's theory of evolution is not simply a harmless, benign, objective scientific fact, but rather a detrimental theory providing the fuel behind the racist theories and hatred that we see today.

 In essense, the logical conclusion of Darwanism, where man is depicted as having apelike ancestors, is the idea that some races or ethnic groups are gradual steps on the evolutionary ladder- with the white/ caucasion races being the most evolved, and the african american, indian and other races/ ethnic groups, allegedly, being more primisitve and closer to the ape-like species- and thus inferior.  In other words, certain non white races are depected as being lower forms on the evolutionary chain, and as such, are deemded as physically and intellectually inferior. Far from liberating society, many ethic and racial gropups are oppressed as a result. The faulty theory of Darwin, therefore, is used to justify racism.

In reality, only a biblical perspective of creation can truly liberate and empower people- bringing to light the equality of all men and women regardless of race or ethnic group.  Rather than oppress and subdue, a god- centered perspective is really the only basis for true freedom and equality.  Apart from the biblical view- if one were to rely on the the theories of Darwanism, there is no basis for equality and justice.  The theories of Darwinism have been behind more hate crimes, racism and injustice- providing the justification of men to abuse men.  I would suggest this book for anyone interested in the plague of racism.,  It provides a challanging view to many advocated of the theory of evolution, as it correclate the theories of evolution to the problem of racism that we see throught history as well as today.  As a blogger for Master Books, I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.

The Life Ready Woman by Shaunti Feldhahn & Robert Lewis

The Life Ready Woman: Thriving in a Do-it-all World by Shaunti Feldhahn & Robert Lewis, an instruction manual for women living in today's modern world speaks to all women regarldess of age, socio-economic status, culture or station of life.  This book is best described as an instruction manual/ self help book as it addresses common place issues such as finances, career, family life, and every other pursuit/ endeavor imaginable.  This book is appropriate whether you are a a twenty one year old, college student, a mother, grandmother or a CEO of a major corporation.  This book coveres just about every life situation imaginable and empowers the reader in the process.

What makes this book stand out from any other self -help or motivational book on the market is that it is written from an eternal and  biblical perspective- challanging the modern misconceptions that biblical teaching is antiquated and oppressive.  In contrast, this book portrays how having a biblical world view of life is actually empowering and liberating for any woman regardless of her life situation.  Pleasing God can be compatible with a succesful career, family and an overall satisfying life.  In contrast to the myth that a God-centered life is bland and oppressive, a God- centered life is the key to true happiness and fulfillment.  In fact, when you leave God out of your life, ultimately you will feel a sense of loss and a void that nothing else will fulfill.  For example, financially powerful women, with fame and other wordly achievements often feel a sense of emptiness- a void that can not be filled by money, career or entertainment. As stated on page 23, "We need a concrete, biblical way to help others and ourselves more than the right decisions".  The bible is depicted as a guide, just as relevant today in modern society as when it was first written.  It is God's authority for each and every one of us- and the key to liberation, true happiness and fulfilment.

As a blogger for B&H books, I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.  For any interested reader, willing to come down and pick up a copy- I do have one copy of this book to givve away.  Please contact me if you are interested!