Books! (2 of 2)

Thanks to the new bookstore in our lives, I “deal” in books even more than before.  As much as I appreciate and use electronic technologies, I want paper or a physical book in my hand when I read anything longer than a couple paragraphs.  Audio books on a portable device?  Absolutely.  But I can’t imagine ever gravitating to an e-reader if I can choose a paperback or hardbound volume instead.  (If your hands get tired holding open a book, try this cool gadget.)

A couple days ago, the first post in this short series appeared.  At some point, I may share a few book covers I will never spend my time with, for various reasons.  That should be fun.  For now, though, here are a few more of the new books that have drawn my interest.

 img_20161215_073853_334.jpg I judged this book by its cover.  Positively, that is.  I liked the look of it—a spare design, a nice font.  I like thinking about maps, national borders, and music.  Basically, everything about this cover drew me in.

I don’t know the author, but I’ve seen the movie made from his earlier title.  This one is a nice, moderate-length hardback; based on the flap and back cover info, it has much promise for relaxed storytelling.  Probably a book to be borrowed, not kept.  (Can’t imagine reading a novel a 2nd time.  Corollary:  I can count on the fingers of two hands [with a couple fingers cut off] the movies I’ve intentionally watched a 2nd or 3rd time.)

Best-selling physician-author M. Scott Peck was first famous for The Road Less Traveled.  He is known for some philosophy and some theology in a deeper-than-the-norm self-help vein.  We’ll see if this novel lives up to his name.  I found one pretty negative review, but I suspect I’ll appreciate some things about it anyway.
 img_20161215_073847_572.jpg
img_20161215_163058_061.jpg I’ve only vaguely noticed this and other similar titles before.  I probably should have picked it up years ago.  (I have at times exercised little judgment in “choosing my battles.”)  The message here is likely good for me right about now:  when I’m inwardly pouting about relatively little things, or in the annoying lulls between computer screen-refreshes because one software program our company uses behaves badly, or when decisions inhibit my efficiency and effectiveness, I should probably take this book out and read a few pages.
Because everyone needs a rule book for the greatest, most interesting game the world has ever known.  (Just ignore today’s obscene player salaries and team owners’ greed. Those things spoil the game. Oh, for the days of Lou Gehrig and Dizzy Dean and Lou Boudreau and Pee Wee Reese and Carl Erskine and Mickey Mantle and Ted Williams and Stan Musial and even Tom Seaver and Joe Morgan and George Brett. . . .)  The intricacies of baseball can lead to interesting questions that I’ll now be able to investigate more easily. 20161208_210553.jpg
20161208_210559.jpg New Testament Words is a treasured find, and right up my alley.  Some of my study partners will caution me not to place this work too close to my BDAG lexicon or my Greek grammars, but the linguistic insights of the renowned Scottish scholar William Barclay will certainly illuminate some things. In terms of importance in my studies, I imagine these elaborations will exceed those of A.T. Robertson in his six-volume set Word Pictures in the New Testament, at whose right this Barclay book now stands.  (It was interesting to find that this used book belonged to a friend of a friend.  I’ve no idea why anyone would get rid of this one!)
This book certainly caught my eye and was a gift from someone who knew it would. The Kingdom of God is arguably the most comprehensive, utterly significant, even cataclysmic topic of all time. I have already read some of this, and I’ve bookmarked it for a time that my attentions can be more focused. 20161208_210607.jpg

Speaking of God’s Kingdom . . . prior to examining the holdings of “our” new bookstore, I had begun to build a mini-collection of books about Christians, culture, society, government, and (what I take as) the over-arching Kingdom of God.  I’ve spoken and written extensively about this Kingdom myself, and it’s a good time to share again some details, along with the means of acquiring a copy of my book Subjects of the Kingdom.

At least parts of this book would be good reading for any thoughtful person who observes and cares about how pure Christianity relates to American society.  I am interested in avoiding various traps of the Christian Right, and the notion that American patriotism and Christianity should go hand in hand is one of those traps.  The book somewhat extensively deals with some important-but-often-overlooked ideals of original Christianity—namely, nonviolence and non-participation in human government in favor of an “apocalyptic” view of the Kingdom of God.

The term “pacifism” could perhaps be said to be a book theme, but I am reluctant to use the term for fear that it is associated with less thoughtful, or differently thoughtful, philosophies and theologies.  What I advocate does not necessarily correlate to so-called “pacifism” in terms of beliefs about what a government should or should not do.  (On the contrary, I seek to emphasize what those in the Christian nation should or should not do.)  On the other hand, when one digs, he can find quite a number of (pacifistic) “peace churches,” historically speaking, and this fact alone may be surprising to groups other than my own, such as contemporary fundamentalists and Roman Catholics.

Here is a link to cover blurbs from Subjects of the Kingdom: Christians, Conscience, Government, and the Reign of the King.

And here are two ways to get the book:

  1.  CreateSpace Direct

Password:  allegiance

Add the book (1 or more copies) to your “cart,” and then on the next page, paste in the BL8DQZ4H discount code for $1.50 off.

2. Amazon  (may be cheaper, especially if you get a used copy or get free shipping)

All my books may be viewed and purchased here.

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