Friday, November 28, 2014

21 Things the Devil Cannot Do

No, I will not list the 21 things!  Ha!  Duane Vander Klok has written a demonic expose' on Satan that arms us, as Christians, to banish his strongholds on us forever.  He points out that we frequently react "in fear and panic" when we should be using the authority of Jesus Christ to make him flee. 
The author enumerates the long list of tools we already have in our box and gives us the biblical insight to put those to use.  Written in an easy to read, almost conversational manner, Duane takes us through such topics as Sizing Up the Enemy, where he presents the basics of the Devil's limitations.  He reminds us (or informs us) that Satan cannot read our mind, cannot predict the future and is not "omni-anything!"  The victory is already ours through the blood of Christ and we need to live like it is.  He discusses spiritual laws the Devil cannot break, things the Devil cannot do to believers, and signs of "Demon Trouble."  He further discusses how to expose the enemy's weaknesses.  He includes a chapter on uncovering the enemy's tactics. 
This is a thorough and concise discussion of defeating Satan's hold on our life.  The examples and illustrations are well written and recognizable.  Yes, there most definitely is a list of 21 things and it is worth reading and considering.   This book is a useful resource with enough scripture to illustrate each point.  I would have liked even more scripture reference which I feel would have aided me in my own study and reading.  As in many books of this nature, the author is drawing us a picture of "things" we may already know from the Bible but do not always take to heart for use in our Christian walk.  I appreciated the reminder of the power I already have to defeat the Devil's influence in my life and any stronghold he may have over me.  This is recommended reading in my opinion.  I give 21 Things the Devil Cannot Do four stars.
I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the publisher, Chosen, in exchange for my honest review.  These words are my opinion.
Learn more about this author at his site Duane Vander Klok

21 Things the Devil Cannot Do by Duane Vander Klok

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Every Valley

Advent with the Scriptures of Handel's Messiah is the subtitle of this book.  It is a compilation of the scriptures that Handel's Messiah are taken from.  This devotional was written to be used during the advent season with each of forty writings taking us through the thirty or so days prior to Christmas.  If you have ever heard the Hallelujah Chorus then you have heard the most listened to part of the Messiah.  There is much more to the composition than the chorus, including the story of Christ through His birth, life, death and resurrection.  The devotionals are made up of a section of scripture with a brief reflection on that portion and the hope it holds for us as Christians.  Much of the Messiah was taken from Isaiah, but also scriptures from Zechariah, Psalms, Corinthians, Luke, Hebrews and Revelation.  Each section also lists the movement at which each scripture reference can be heard in the music.  It is recommended that you may enjoy listening to each movement before reading that corresponding scripture and devotional. Every Valley really is a study in what Handel was trying to accomplish when he wrote the Messiah.   The separation into parts makes it easy to pick up each day where you left off the day before.  Part 1 is Christ's Birth and It's Foretelling; Part 2 is Christ's Passion and Resurrection; Part 3 is Christ's Eternal Reign.  I have never heard the entire Messiah performed and this book makes me think I would like to hear it all.  I appreciated the quote given by Albert Blackwell in the forward of the book, in which Handel, after being congratulated on Messiah as "noble entertainment" for his listeners, replied  "I should be sorry if I only entertained them, I wish to make them better."  The Messiah is God's word for us, given in love, set to music.  This is a book that will encourage you to reflect on God's gift to us at this Christmas season.  This devotional was compiled by Jessica Miller Kelly with multiple contributors.
I was given a complimentary e-book review copy by the publisher, Westminster John Knox Press, in exchange for my honest review.  These words are my opinion.
Every Valley

Friday, November 7, 2014

America - Turning a Nation to God

In this compelling call from Dr. Tony Evans, he challenges Christians to live out the word from God spoken to Solomon in 2 Chronicles 7-10 saying, "...if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land." 
This is exactly what we need and Dr. Evans book gives much to work with toward Christians uniting to ask that forgiveness and receiving healing for our land.  He does an excellent job of pointing out that the church has lost it's saltiness and no longer has the influence in America that it once had.  We have given up trying in many instances.  He also includes specific resources for churches to utilize in becoming united for the cause of serving a suffering world and regaining our influence.  He tells of spending an afternoon with Billy Graham and during their talk "...Dr. Graham leaned toward me in his chair and voiced his frustrations on how churches would come together for the sake of evangelism but then go back to their own disconnected corners after his event had ended.  If these churches were kingdom minded, he postulated, their collective impact in the community would have been ongoing." pp.139.  Pointing out that Christians are best and most effective when united, not when sitting in their own corners.
There is much to read in this book about uniting across church boundaries to be effective once again in our country.  I especially appreciated the background and history he gave of how the Israelites ended up where they were when God gave that word to Solomon and how that is relevant to us today.
This book is easy to read and I commend Dr. Evans for tackling a huge and important topic and laying it out in simple terms.  We tend to think if the answer is not complex, then it can't be the right answer.  But, is that not exactly what we are called to?  Childlike faith with heartfelt prayer is what we are called to.
This is a very good read and I highly recommend it.  In fact, I give America five stars!
Look for it's release from Moody in January 2015.
I was given a complementary e-book copy of this book from Moody Publishers in exchange for my honest review.  These words are my opinion.
Read more at the link I have included below.

America Turning a Nation to God

America: Turning a Nation to God   -     By: Tony Evans