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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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New Books You Should Know (December 2018)

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Scientism and Secularism: Learning to Respond to a Dangerous Ideology
Cover of Scientism and Secularism

J. P. Moreland

Crossway, 2018

Can we confidently believe anything that can’t be demonstrated in a science lab? What if much that passes for science isn’t really science after all? And what, then, of its criticisms of Christianity? These are the questions Moreland presses, and he presses them wonderfully well with eminent clarity. Very highly recommended. This book was long overdue, it’s easily accessible to all readers, and there’s no real substitute for the subject.

 

The Devil’s Redemption: A New History and Interpretation of Christian UniversalismCover of The Devil's Redemption

Michael J. McClymond

Baker Academic, 2018

2 volumes; 1,376 pages

It’s not often we see a genuine contribution of this magnitude in theological discussion. An unprecedented display and analysis of the doctrine of universal salvation as it has been variously approached and taught through the centuries. The scope and depth of McClymond’s research is breathtaking. I can’t imagine another book ever coming along that will displace this work as the standard on the subject.

 

A Good Old Age: An A to Z of Loving and Following the Lord Jesus in Later YearsCover of A Good Old Age

Derek Prime

10 Publishing, 2017

This book was released at the end of last year. I hadn’t noticed it until recently, but it’s a unique book that deserves mention. You’re likely at least somewhat familiar with Derek Prime’s writings on various biblical studies, and here he takes a distinctly pastoral tone to counsel those approaching the “senior” years. This book is just superb, rich with insightful application of biblical instruction to older Christians. In truth, it should be read while you’re still young. An excellent, remarkably profitable, and needed book suited to you and everyone you know.

 

Swords and Plowshares: American Evangelicals on War, 1937–1973timothey-padgett-swords-plowshares-200x3

Timothy D. Padgett

Lexham Press, 2018

This is a landmark new book of American evangelical thought about World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and American foreign policy from 1937 to 1979. Padgett surveys and analyzes evangelical spokesmen in their own words and demonstrates that your stereotype is likely too simplistic. For the history of American evangelical thought and for the study of Christian attitudes toward war this book is a must.

 

Does Life Have Any Meaning?Cover of Does Life Have Any Meaning?

John Blanchard

Evangelical Press, 2018

John Blanchard’s writings are some of the most popular for serious yet accessible contemporary evangelism. A reliable author who has spent much time learning Scripture and defending the faith, his outreach-related booklets and books are always worth the price of admission. This new little book is no exception—an excellent resource and an enjoyable read for the believer and unbeliever alike.

 

The Divine Christ: Paul, the Lord Jesus, and the Scriptures of IsraelCover of The Divine Christ

David B. Capes

Baker Academic, 2018

Just what do we mean—and what should we have in mind—when we confess that Jesus is Lord? And just what is the relation between Jesus and the LORD (all caps, Yahweh)? This book analyzes these questions from the viewpoint of the apostle Paul and his use of “Lord” in his writings. Capes does some important spade work and provides firm exegetical grounding for a “high” Christology rooted in the earliest of Christian (New Testament) confessions.

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