Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Thoughts on Books

1. One book that changed your life
The Bible (obviously). C.S. Lewis's book “Compelling Reason” made me feel dumb (i.e. I should have thought of much of what he says, except I was too dumb to figure it out for myself). But I would say “How Should We Then Live” by Francis Schaeffer. Schaeffer brings up a lot of good points about how our society works and what our response should be. For the first time I started thinking about thinking. I started thinking about what it means to think like a Christian, and have a Biblical Worldview. Don't get me wrong... I'm still a convinced Dispensationalist. But Schaeffer did challenge some of my assumptions on how Dispensationalism should be lived out. I'm still digesting a lot of this.

2. One book that you’ve read more than once
“How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. I read it once every couple of years. I think it should be mandatory reading for newly promoted Managers.

3. One book you’d want on a deserted island
Well, it wouldn't be “How to Win Friends and Influence People”! Assuming I had a Bible, then I would want a Greek Testament and a copy of Mounce's “Basics of Biblical Greek”. I know, this counts as 3 books, but if I had 16 hours a day with nothing else to do, I would definitely focus on learning Greek.

4. One book that made you laugh
There was a book on speaking in tongues by “the Happy Hunters”. I'm sure a well trained scholar from a Pentecostal background would cry while reading this book (it is really bad) but it made me laugh. No logic. No real theology. Just do it, because “everyone” is receiving the gift.

5. One book that made you cry
I don't think it has happened yet. There are two movies I cry for, and one episode of Star Trek, but I've never cried over a book.

6. One book that you wish had been written
“Systematic Theology – 12 volumes” by the Apostle Paul.

7. One book that you wish had never been written
New Age Bible Versions. When I first read this book, I thought it was written by someone who was mocking the King James Only position on Bible translation. After all, it was so silly it seemed to be making fun of the King James Only position under the guise of supporting it. But I was wrong; the author is actually serious. Whether you are King James Only or prefer the Living Bible, this is a book to avoid.

8. One book that you are currently reading
Mere Christianity. I will be a teaching a course in “Christian Worldview and Thinking Like a Christian” in September, and there are some things I want to brush up on.

9. One book you’ve been meaning to read
I know there are several million people who will be upset with me for saying this, but I've always meant to read Calvin's Institutes. Some people will be upset with me for daring to preach before I've read the Institutes. Others will be upset with me for poisoning my mind with Calvin. Personally I don't care who is upset with me. I've meant to read it, and I will read it... some day.


Anonymous KJV said...

The Bible is under attack from all sides. Satan knows it tells the truth about him, the victory that Jesus had at the cross, and what will happen in the future. As such, Satan has and still is making every attempt to destroy the Word of God. What better way to do this, than to change the meaning of the Bible over time with different bible versions; each version as it comes along claiming it is the truth and the most accurate of all the versions up until that point.
The line must be drawn where we say, "If the King James Bible was good enough for 400 years, then it is still good enough for me." For by it men and women have been saved and the knowledge of God imparted unto them. When new bible versions come along, they always take something away that is never replaced, only to be lost forever. If you believe that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, then stand up for it. Take a stand and speak out against these new bible versions. An objection often raised against the "King James Only Crowd" is that people learn something from the other (modern) versions, too, and that some even get saved: but I dare say that this occurs in spite of these errant versions, not because of them!
The Authorized Version of 1611, or, in other words, the King James Bible, stands alone in its uniqueness, integrity, and fidelity to the truthfulness of God’s Word. Among reasons why this writer holds this conviction is because of the great harm done not only to the Word of God, but the detriment wrought in the local church in its public worship, and, of course, because of the confusion created in countless group and individual Bible studies. After all, it could be said: How do you think your professor would think or feel if all of his students used different textbooks in his class?! In our case, God is our Great Professor! He alone is the one true God, who has walked among us upon this earth and left us the living and enduring legacy of His Word and His Spirit. Until He comes, Amen.

3:55 p.m.  
Blogger Shawn Abigail said...

I try to be fairly open about permitting comments. I was unsure whether to post this comment or not. I fear new Christians or untaught Christians might be led astray by these types of dogmatic assertions.

However I did decide to allow this comment. The comment itself should be instructive about much that is wrong with the KJV-only movement. First, ask yourself why this individual felt the need to post. It was because I said the book "New Age Bible Versions" was a bad book. Even those who are KJV-only should discourage people from reading NSBV because it presents the KJV-only position so poorly. That is sufficient justification for this individual to make comments in defense of the KJV.

Second, please note that I posted my article several months ago. The person making this comment is obviously unaware that comments are only useful in the present conversations. People don't wade through months of old postings to see if there are any new comments. The only reason why I knew about this comment was because I have moderation turned on.

I could comment on the poor elements of HTML design on this person's web page, but instead I need to mention the poor arguments this comment makes. None of the arguments presented would convince anyone of anything. They are merely subjective emotion, and don't address the real scholarly issues involved in the whole debate.

Finally, and most seriously, this individual seems to be unaware that it is orthodox Christian doctrine that inspiration extends only to the original manuscripts. To suggest inspiration extends to a specific English translation would be considered heresy by most Bible believing Christians (besides displaying a profound misunderstanding of the issues involved in transmission of the Biblical text and in translation).

The KJV-only position is certainly wrong, but sadly it is usually "defended" by a barrage of articles that are simplistic, miss the point, lack logic, and run contrary to real Biblical scholarship.

10:00 p.m.  

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