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Joseph – His arms were made strong

By David C. Seale
June 2013 | Review by Wayne Pearce


The story of Joseph as recorded in the book of Genesis is a vital part of salvation history. Through this one man God kept alive the family from which Jesus Christ the Saviour of the world would be born. It is a glorious story and the one that David Searle tells in his new book. In doing so the author follows the Apostle Paul who, when writing in the context of our vulnerability to temptation and referring to God's people in the OT, said 'These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings to us' (I Cor. 10:11). 'Everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope' (Rom. 15:4). Joseph, His Arms Were Made Strong takes up and illustrates many truths vital for Christian living. It is not only a a good read but will be spiritually beneficial to both young and old. It is relevant to contemporary trends and opinions both in society and the church. It draws upon long pastoral experience and is full of the down-to-earth examples. What is unusual but refreshing about the book is the author's directness in addressing the reader and his asking some personal questions. This underlines the helpfulness of the lessons drawn from Joseph's life and makes the reading a stimulus and guide to spiritual growth and personal holiness.

  • Publisher: Banner of Truth Trust
  • ISBN: 978-1-84871-165-5
  • Pages: 266
  • Price: 10.95
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Book Review

Joseph: his arms were made strong

David C. Searle
Banner of Truth, 266 pages, £10.95
ISBN: 978-1-84871-165-5
Star rating : 4


Banner of Truth are to be commended for publishing this new work on the life and times of the patriarch Joseph.

     Joseph: his arms were made strong comprises 18 chapters of insightful exposition and practical application of Genesis 37 – 50. The foreword from Derek Prime is helpful and whets the appetite for what follows.

     The author, David Searle, has pastored three Presbyterian churches in Scotland and Northern Ireland, and was director of Rutherford House, a theological research and study centre in Edinburgh.

     This book is the fruit of his preaching and teaching on the life of Joseph to five different congregations, during his fruitful pastoral ministry. He writes from a wonderfully Christ-centred perspective that can only edify and encourage the Christian reader.

     We are here, not only reminded of Joseph’s pivotal place in the unfolding of God’s plan of salvation, but similarly taught to see in Joseph’s person and story a type of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

     This is a book that will encourage Christians to make more of the Old Testament Scriptures, for here we are unequivocally reminded that the New was in the Old concealed and the Old is in the New revealed.

     There is a truly biblical (and hence Reformed) balance between the sovereignty of God and human responsibility. The book will increase biblical and theological knowledge and stimulate spiritual growth and godliness.

     This is readable, reliable and perceptive. It will not only prove an invaluable aid to preachers and teachers, but will be a blessing to all Christians. It ought to be read by mature Christians and those young in the faith.

Wayne Pearce

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