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‘For their rock is not as our rock’

By Daniel Strange
August 2015 | Review by Joseph Hewitt
  • Publisher: IVP (Apollos)
  • ISBN: 978-1-78359-100-8
  • Pages: 384
  • Price: 19.99
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Book Review

This excellent book (published under the Apollos imprint) begins with an autographical chapter, ‘in the spirit and on the shoulders of J. H. Bavinck’.

This is followed by a copy of a speech from Max Muller, delivered before the British and Foreign Bible Society in 1901, the gist of which is that other religions teach ‘salvation by works’, whereas the true Christian religion is exclusively ‘salvation by grace’. There are ten chapters altogether. While not an easy read, I found the book very stimulating and warmly commend it to thinking Christians everywhere.

Dr Daniel Strange is a scholar of much ability, often using words new to me and enigmatic expressions like ‘subversive fulfilment’ (which I did come to understand). His tone exemplifies 1 Peter 3:15 — ‘bold in action, but gentle in manner’. I am impressed with this approach and now seek to adopt it in discussions with those of other faiths.

I am greatly impressed with his emphasis on the biblical fact that all men and women are made in the ‘image of God’ and to be addressed as such; also, that God’s unique kindness to all is seen in his common grace, as witnessed to in Psalm 107; Acts 14:14-18; and Romans 1.

In emphasising Genesis 1-11, the author believes in the longevity of the first people (Adam lived 930 years and Methuselah 969 years; and Noah preached for 120 years), and that much oral communication was passed down the generations until the Flood, and later.

Genesis 10 shows that the numerous nations, later scattered, arose from the three sons of Noah. With the influences of the pride of man and demonic forces there were many sinful inventions, so that later at Babel idolatry had developed into the shocking form of the worship of the heavens and the stars.

Two of the biblical passages Daniel Strange expounds are Deuteronomy 31; 32:8; and Paul’s address at the Areopagus in Acts 17:19-34. With staunch biblical belief, he shows that monotheism came first and was then corrupted — not, as some assert, the other way round.

This book is worth its weight in gold and deserves to be much studied and discussed. I pray that it may stir many minds and hearts with God’s grace.

Joseph Hewitt

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