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All articles from issue November 2018

Review

December 2018
Reviews > Book

In the Footsteps of King David: Revelations from an Ancient Biblical City

Until the publication of In the footsteps of King David, the prevailing approach to biblical archaeology has often been denial of the factuality of biblical texts. From 2007 to 2013, a team of archaeologists (led by the authors of this fascinating volume) excavated Khirbet Qeiyafa. This is located in the Elah Valley on the border of ancient Judea and Philistia, close to the location of David’s battle with Goliath. They concluded that they had uncovered the biblical city of ‘Shaarim’ (Joshua 15:36; 1 Samuel 17:52; 1 Chronicles 4:31). Garfinkel, Ganor and Hasel utilised cutting-edge cyber tools, aerial photography and 3D-imaging during the excavation at Khirbet...

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Review

December 2018
Reviews > Book

Why Is There Evil in the World (and So Much of It?) (The Big Ten)

Anyone who regularly engages in outdoor evangelism will tell you that the question of this book’s title is the one most frequently raised by people on the street. It is good to know, therefore, the solid biblical answers with which Christians can respond and, hopefully, help people. This is especially true for helping those who may themselves be suffering in some way. This book points the reader to some excellent biblical answers to the issue, based on several case studies, which culminate in the experience of the Lord Jesus himself. The book doesn’t claim to give all the answers to every aspect of suffering, but...

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Review

December 2018
Reviews > Book

What is Man?

In this book, Professor Andrews (see article on page 3 of this ET issue) distils a lifetime of meditation on the titular question into 14 rich and readable chapters. He unpacks the issues behind what scholars have called ‘hard problems’ and shows us how biblical revelation brings understanding to our minds and gives humans a meaningful place in our world. The first section examines responses to the question from people speaking in the name of various scientific fields. These include neuroscience, psychology and evolutionary biology. This critical scrutiny reveals a fundamental disparity between modern secular intellectuals and Christian apologists. The contrast is between seeing man...

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Review

November 2018
Reviews > Book

Dying Well: Dying Faithfully

Referring to ‘dying’ in the title of a book is perhaps off-putting to many readers. With a title such as Dying Well, you’re also not quite sure what aspects of death the book will address. However, it’s soon apparent that this book has potential as it ventures into an area of social discourse taboo. In the foreword, Rico Tice goes so far as to say it makes him feel ‘excited about preparing for my own death’. Indeed, the Bible is clear that we should view death as ‘gain’ (Philippians 1:21). The book springs from the author’s personal experience of suddenly losing his father. Moreover, the...

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Review

November 2018
Reviews > Book

The Bible: God’s Inerrant Word (Banner Mini-Guides)

According to the back cover, this book intends to ‘provide an entry point for those who know little about the “Book of books”, but it is written ‘in such a way as to encourage those who know it better to explore it more fully’. The book begins well. The first chapter explains that our God communicates: through creation, through chosen people such as prophets and apostles, and supremely through the Scriptures and the Lord Jesus Christ. The second chapter then bogs us down in a debate. Do words have any meaning? Ask modern poets and writers. Yet surely readers of this book would have no...

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Review

November 2018
Reviews > Book

The God of Creation

Writing clearly and concisely, Richard Phillips explains how a correct view of God informs a correct reading of Genesis. He shows how liberal, non-literal views of the creation account are inadmissible if careful hermeneutic principles are followed. The book summarises arguments for a literal view of Genesis. Alternatives like the framework hypothesis, which see Genesis 1-3 as a poetic device, are shown to be false and theologically dangerous. I would have liked Phillips to have also examined the recent idea of a ‘cosmic temple’ interpretation, as advocated by John Walton in The Lost World of Genesis One. Phillips shows that even evolutionary cosmology points to...

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Review

November 2018
Reviews > Book

The Devil’s Music: How Christians Inspired, Condemned, and Embraced Rock ’n’ Roll

In pacey style, The Devil’s Music traces the turbulent relationship between pop music and American evangelicalism from the 1950s to the present day. The story begins in the revivalist meetings of Pentecostal churches in the southern states, characterised by shouting, foot stamping, ‘holy dancing’ and flamboyant showman preachers. This is the world in which Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Johnny Cash and Little Richard developed their love of music and from which they went on to develop and popularise the phenomenon that was dubbed ‘rock ’n’ roll’. Through extensive research, Randall J. Stephens shows how the new music was seen almost universally as antithetical to...

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Review

October 2018
Reviews > Book

Adam: The First and the Last. Responding to modern attacks on Adam and Christ

This book was written in order to present histories of some of the Cambridge University Reformation martyrs. It provides varied portraits of men who grew into outstanding Christians. Some of them are well known, such as Thomas Cranmer, Nicholas Ridley and Hugh Latimer. Others include John Frith, Thomas Bilney, Robert Ferrar and Thomas Gusgate. The book is very informative, hiding nothing about the men concerned. Cranmer’s inability to take a stand against Henry VIII over several issues (including the way Anne Boleyn was treated) puts into even greater contrast his later witness and the superb Prayer Book which he left us. Ferrar’s unquenchable goodness of...

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