Tag Archives: books

Productive Year

Reading is my ‘middle name’. Ok, not really.

I love to learn. I don’t have a set number of pages to read per year, but I do have certain books that I set out each year to read, depending on the size of the books that I can fit in for the year. The books that I have read this year as follows:

The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha Vol1-1000 pages

The Old Testament Pseudepigrapha Vol 2-1000 pages

The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism 348 pages

Kingdom through Covenant 904 pages

Reversing Hermon 331 pages

Jesus as the fulfillment of the Temple in John 300 pages

Jesus thru middle eastern eyes 443 pages

I am finishing up Josephus the last few months this year, which will add 600 more pages. It seems that almost read 5,000 pages this last year.

I enjoy the learning of each subject or theme of a book, or a OT Pseud.(alot of unfinished material, or excerpts of things to get something from them) But there is always something to ‘see’ in all of the material.

I am trying to narrow my interests in subject matters for books, it is really,really hard, but I am down to maybe four that I will now concentrate on. I am always getting side tracked with a conversation with someone and I will devote some time to flush my knowledge and research out to see and know the topic. (As we all should do, when confronted with a subject of the bible whether new or old.)

I will probably do some research on my four subjects of interest, on further study and go from there. I intend to give myself some time to gather some of my thoughts on these matters and write them down for my clarity and usage for sharing.

I am excited to get next year started on this. But what I am always writing,speaking, sharing with anyone that I expound on, is it is apart, or it is the “The Eternal Purpose” of God that will be the true focus of all that I do or share. I wish all of you to also reflect on what is God’s will in the Bible? With any story or beginning, it has to be the “Beginning of the Story” that exemplifies the thought of what the Author or God is trying to do, not the literal one, but the Analogy of what God is doing!

Let’s all look at Genesis 1-2, What is God’s plan? How is He going to restore His Plan?(Hint: its in Revelation 21-22.)

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Filed under Kingdom of God

Brother, lend me your ear

I find it worrisome, that many of our brethren(sisters,too) are afraid of being,talking, or discussing theology, if it is not of the same theology as theirs.

Any bible reading person knows that this is so wrong in so many ways.

But my question is “Why”?

Are we not led to ‘listen’ to our fellow man,christian, or non-christian for wisdom to their ears?

I find this sorta ironic when someone is stern with the coming of the christians to a building to discuss God, but you cannot on the ‘outside’ of the walls of the building!

It is in this “Evangelical” crowd(which seems to be fading, good!) that has always pushed the ‘witnessing’ of people to the inth degree, that has baffled me, in their earnestness of accomplishing this knowledge.

I am, I think one of very few(at least, around me) that loves talking bible,God, eternal purpose with anyone, anytime, and anywhere. I have picked this ‘fun’ thing to stimulate me in the ways of the Lord in the past 20 years. My thirst for ‘wisdom’ has been thru the bible, videos,talks,lectures, blogs, in-person, youtube, and alot of books(the # changes weekly,lol)

I sometimes wonder, if the average christian is thinking,searching God on a daily basis? I do not see it as a burden or stupid or just weird, I see it as “getting to know my God as personally as I can”.

How often do you spend with God?

How do you spend time with God?

Can your friends tell you are different in asking,searching, studying or reading about God?

Give me some feedback on how and what you do to get closer to God?

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Filed under Deeper Understanding

My Top Ten List

I have not put out my top list in awhile, since I have read a few more books since last time! LOL That goes without saying! Ha.

So Here Goes-

  1. From Eternity to Here by Frank Viola
  2. Surprised by Hope by N.T. Wright
  3. Love Wins by Rob Bell
  4. Paul and the Faithfulness of God by N.T. Wright
  5. Kingdom through Covenant by Peter J. Gentry/Stephen J Wellum
  6. Paul and Palestinian Judaism by E.P. Sanders
  7. The Mysticism of Paul the Apostle by Albert Schweitzer
  8. Jesus Manifesto by Leonard Sweet/Frank Viola
  9. Galatians(Commentary) by N.T. Wright
  10. A Larger Hope? by Ilaria L E Ramelli

So, What do you think? Have you read any of these? What is your Top Ten Christian List?

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Filed under Kingdom of God

A strange thing happened on the way to…

I love reading. I love reading christian theology. I love reading the bible. and I do!

I had the opportunity to pick up some older books from my father that He had gotten from his pastoral Uncle, which would be two generations back. So these books are early 1900’s edition of christianity in all phases of literature. I have about thirty or so left to read(before the end of the year,I promised to have them read). I went thru the books trying to see which one I wanted to read next, after a store bought book which I was almost finished with to start on.

I perused the selection of books with no particular rhyme or reason on the subject on which to pick the book on, I usually stick with a theme of books for a period of time that peak’s my interest. So I pick this small withered book with yellow pages that was still in pretty good considered it was printed in 1966. It is book titled “Studies in Amos” by Kyle M. Yates,Jr. Now, this in round about way is considered a commentary on ‘Amos’, which exceedes it’s accomplishment as a book.

When I delve into a subject for studying I am never surprised that I don’t ‘see’ something new or a answer a question that I have always had, and it gets answered in the book. This book was no exception. I am a hound dog in always looking for insight and answers to questions that arise in my journey. If you haven’t read the book of Amos lately, I would strongly suggest you do, to remind yourself on what the prophet Amos was telling Israel that their indiscretions and turning from God was taking them down the road to destruction, and it was coming soon.

Israel was in trouble, God was not happy. God’s design for them was to worship Him.

It seems that their “seeking and Living” was being construed as something else as God had planned. The people were not using the temple as their understanding of worship it was meant for. John 4: 24 says that “God is Spirit,and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” This was not being done in the kingdom of Israel. The people of God had made their ‘meeting place the idol that it was the focus of their lives. After all, this was where God’s finger was touching still, even tho his people were not worshiping him as they said. But this wasn’t what God intended for his people, It was HIM, that He wanted them to seek and find, and not to be infatuated with the ‘place’ that He could be at.

It seems that Israel did not take the warning to heart, because it wasn’t for long in it’s history that Israel’s Temple was destroyed. Amos’s warning was a precursor to the ‘church’ of today I believe that the same thing is coming to the building of worship, of the so called believers. It is the realization that the church must face that we are using the building for the substitution of Jesus Christ, for the answer. It is the essence of Christ that we are missing, the ‘life’ of Christ we are missing, the Love of Christ is missing, the Care of the World by Christ is missing,We just don’t understand why the things we are doing aren’t working? A Duh!

As was when Israel was trying to ‘Seek’, They were not seeking ‘Christ’, they were seeking the meeting place. God is Spirit, and the Truth is that He is within ‘US, and We are within Him.

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Filed under Kingdom of God

Update on latest books read

I like to every once in awhile keep people up to date on my studies and books that I have read.

My latest books that I have read are in the same genre in a way, they include things that pertain to the theme of ‘Universalism’. Like “I say to the people that ask me what are you reading now”?, I tell them that I am quite diverse in my book reading or interest in the subjects of the bible. This topic is of a controversial subject that has been in the christian history since the beginning of the New Testament, it has not ever gone away. It seems that in the last 20+ years it has come into the spotlight in alot of different arena’s in the christian realm. This is why I took up the gauntlet to delve into the subject. Here are a few of the books that I come across to educate me.

The first one is by David Bentley Hart-“That All shall be Saved”.

This is probably one of the two books that challenges the concept of ‘Hell’, which is a part of ‘Universalism’.

The second one is by Richard Rohr –“The Universal Christ”.

Addresses the ‘Saving of All’

The third one is by Haley Goranson Jacob –“Conformed to the Image of His Son”.

Very deep material of why man is restored to the image of God.

The Fourth one is by Ilaria L. E. Ramelli –“A Larger Hope”

This book is the going thru the Apostolic fathers that were either hinting of the concept of ‘Universalism’ or was intentionally. This was thru the Middle ages.

The Fifth one is by Robin A Parry –“A Larger Hope”(second volume of first)

This book continues with the prior one thru the 20th Century of Apostolic fathers and others that were instituting the claim of ‘Universalism’.

I would recommend all these books for research and studying for increased knowledge of biblical theology. But I am especially impressed with both authors of the book “A Larger Hope”. They are all very deep and will need prior knowledge of alot of scriptures to use as references. But this is what it is all about in ‘seeing’ the scriptures as they are presented to us as a complete story of God and His Eternal Purpose.

Let me know if you get to read any of these Great books and your opinion of them or any questions on them.

Good Reading!

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Filed under New Perspective

Backstory!

Do you ever come across something in your bible study that goes against your belief that you have now?

This is happening to me in a lot of studying that I have been doing in the last seven years. I am not on purpose looking for things that are obviously different, but I am looking at the foundation of the christian faith and how it started. It is different from what we see now in our ‘christian’  life.

I know that statement comes out of left field, for some, but you must stop and think and relook at the scriptures, and also the back story of christianity, to get the actual meaning of the scriptures. Back story is very,very important, do not take it lightly, no matter what somebody tells you. You see, only now when someone tells you a story today, and they tell you about something happened to them and what it made them do,say, or react can you totally understand how they would tell the story, you know the background of it all.

But if I was to tell you, a story, from the early 1800’s, you would need to know some background of the story to fully understand on why,where,how, when,and what was going on in my story, or else you would come to some different perspective of the story than I  wanted you to get.  So it is with the same argument that we must use to understand the story of the scriptures. I believe this with all of my heart that this is why we have come with some different messages throughout our reading of the word.

Reading of a back story in a time period and of a society, does not infringe on anything of the bible’s authoritative premise, but it enhances the story to let us be fully aware of what was going on and why. “……and you were there!” is an appropriate phrase to use if we were to put ourselves in the ‘biblical narrative’  in real-time. It would just blow our socks off, if we were to be tele-ported into the scenes of biblical times. I am also convinced that we would come away from the biblical story with a lot of different belief’s and understandings.

It is sometimes frowned upon in some christian circles to not look at or use any ‘outside material’ to further ourselves in biblical knowledge. But what is not understood with biblical studies is that we have taken everything for face value, or the black and white of it. This will just not do!! We need to just go back 200 yrs to see that things changed on the way we perceived things and the reformation parted ways with Catholicism. It is with Martin Luther and John Calvin, that led the way with a different belief system in the scriptures.

This is even more reason to  further ‘your’ study, not anyone’s, or anyone’s group but your’s to make it concrete in your belief. This method of searching the scriptures about the people,land,leaders,societies,gods,kingdoms,kings,rulers, and beliefs will ultimately make God’s story come alive!!

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Filed under New Perspective

Go ahead read a book

My mind and my thoughts are blessed to have read probably around 160 books over the last 5 years, covering many subjects in the religious realm and on the outskirts of it. It has opened my eyes to many inspired men who have researched and prayed and studied for years on their subjects of expertise, to give me even more motive for me to dig deeper into the bible and God himself.

So it is with that, I challenge you to turn the tv off and sit and read a book about a character in the bible, a book of the bible, a new thought about church, christianity, why are we really here on earth for God?,and be blessed and enriched by the time you spend with God searching for His Will.

It is a long journey, as I can attest to, but it is well worth it, the joy of seeing and believing in God’s eternal purpose is just Amazing.

Authors that I recommend  if interested are:Frank Viola,Milt Rodriguez,N.T. Wright,Peter Enns,Scot McKnight,T Austin Sparks,Watchman Nee,Witness Lee,Ray Stedman,Francis Chan, Wolfgang Simson, Dietrich Bonhoffer, Jon Zen,Leonard Sweet,John Fenn just to name a few of the ones that I have read. These will give you things to think about that you might not of thought about, and give you the “I didn’t notice that in the bible before” moments, Lord knows that I have many of them.

May you have many God moments when you read about Him in the coming days!!

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Filed under the Way