Subscribe now

Raiding the Lost Ark

By Jonty Rhodes
May 2014 | Review by Philip Eveson
  • Publisher: IVP
  • ISBN: 978-1-78359-012-4
  • Pages: 184
  • Price: 8.99
Buy this book »

Book Review

Raiding the Lost Ark
Jonty Rhodes
IVP
184 pages, £8.99
ISBN: 978-1-78359-012-4
Star rating: 5 stars

 

No, this is not about Indiana Jones or finding long-lost artefacts! It is about opening up what the Bible has to say on a subject few evangelical people consider.

In a fresh and engaging way the author helps Christians appreciate the relevance of covenant theology to the gospel, the church and the believer’s daily life. After explaining the meaning of ‘covenant’, the various covenants that are either mentioned explicitly or implicitly in Scripture are presented.

The author begins with Adam and the covenant of works, with its blessings for obedience and curses for disobedience. Then there follows God’s common grace covenant with Noah and all living creatures, Abraham and the covenant of grace, God’s covenant with David, Jesus and the new covenant, and the covenant of redemption.

As the author progresses through the book, other important biblical truths relevant to the subject are not overlooked but dealt with clearly and helpfully.

These include: original sin and guilt; the conscious, everlasting punishment of sinners in hell; the battle between Satan’s message and God’s; union with Christ; particular, personal redemption; justification and sanctification; the Holy Spirit; assurance of salvation; the discipline of believers; faith and works; and the relationship between the law and the gospel.

The author, a gospel minister in Derby, is to be congratulated on his treatment of a complex subject in such an easily digestible way, and for not ignoring difficult and sometimes controversial issues where Bible-believing Christians disagree.

An occasional humorous but always helpful illustration, giving light to a chapter topic, and useful graphics summarising the main teaching points, add to the excellence of this book.

Perhaps some of the contents relating to God’s covenant people would have been better left to a follow-up book. The author’s preferences concerning church government and his arguments in favour of paedobaptism must not be allowed to detract from his main concern to dig out the truth concerning God’s covenants.

Philip H. Eveson
Wrexham

 

 

 

 

Book Reviews

Read our latest book reviews

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
Why Should I Trust the Bible?

We should trust the Bible, says Timothy Paul Jones, because it is ‘grounded in the words of a man who died and rose again’ (p.111). Jones’s basic presupposition is this: ‘If we live in a world where it is possible…

See all book reviews
Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
Who Am I? Human Identity and the Gospel in a Confusing World
Thomas Fretwell

In today’s secular society, religion is often regarded as without rational or scientific basis, and therefore irrelevant to life in the modern world and all areas of public engagement. If that is our social context, then it is no wonder…

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
The Pastor’s Life: Practical Wisdom from the Puritans
Matthew D Haste & Shane W Parker

This book highlights ‘some of the many lessons that today’s pastors can learn from the Puritans’ (p.151). As such it is aimed at pastors, but the lessons are really for anyone who is a Christian leader. The opening chapter provides…

Star RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar RatingStar Rating
5 Minutes in Church History: An Introduction to the Stories of God’s Faithfulness in the History of the Church
Stephen J Nichols

What a breath of fresh air this book is! Stephen Nichols has given us 40 vignettes from church history that are brief enough to be digested over a bowl of cereal. The book doesn’t aim to be a beginner’s guide…