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Review

A Vine-Ripened Life

By Stanley D Gale
February 2015 | Review by Roger March
  • Publisher: Reformation Heritage Books
  • ISBN: 978-1-80178-343-1
  • Pages: 70
  • Price: 7.99

Book Review

A vine-ripened life

Stanley D. Gale
Reformed Heritage Books
70 pages, £7.99
ISBN: 978-1-60178-343-1
Star rating : 3

This book is a series of sermons based on the first part of John 15 (the vine and its fruit) and Galatians 5:22-23 (the fruit of the Spirit). Its purpose is to encourage believers to be active in cultivating their spiritual life. It also aims to develop Christian virtues through a dependence upon Christ. It is to him that believers are joined and it is in response to the indwelling Spirit that believers grow.

The central section of the book focuses on the fruit of the Spirit. Each virtue listed in Galatians 5 is given its own chapter. An additional chapter focuses on the importance of humility in promoting holiness of life.

The opening section shows how a fruitful life develops through a relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. The role of the Father in cultivating good quality fruit through discipline is then explained. The final section shows that God’s grace is the fundamental cause of the believer’s spiritual development. Each chapter is concluded with a series of review questions.

Mr Gale has his feet on the ground. He speaks to the contemporary scene in language that we understand. Heavenly truth is applied in a down-to-earth manner and Reformed theology is related to everyday issues. His approach is pastoral and he uses illustrations from his own experience and from family life, to good effect.

If the chapter on peace suffered from extended personal references, the chapter on self-control I found particularly helpful.

This is a book that could confidently be given to any believer. A Christian, newly converted or long-standing, would find real help and encouragement from the pastoral counsel offered here.

Roger March
Wolverton

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