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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Review - The Heroic Boldness of Martin Luther

Review – The Heroic Boldness Of Martin Luther

I’ve said it before, and so I’ll make the statement now that I, like a good many people, tend to stay away from Biographies and Autobiographies because while the informative value is usually unequaled, the presentation is generally dry and it seems like the monotony will never end.  But I’m more than pleasantly surprised by the superb use of space by the author in the one hundred and twenty-two pages of The Heroic Boldness of Martin Luther. 

In the first chapter of this book, Dr. Lawson introduces the reader to the humble beginnings of the son of copper miner Hans Luder and a devout Roman Catholic mother. The manner in which Lawson presents a brief yet complete synopsis of Martin Luther’s life is anything but dry and monotonous, which as I stated earlier is what I’ve come to expect to find in this type of work.  By maintaining the use of the same “rapid” writing style that was in evidence from the preface on, this writer doesn’t give the reader time to become bored or overwhelmed by what is actually a goodly amount of information.  In fact, I was a bit perturbed that the book ended as soon as it did, I wanted it to continue on. 

I came away from this read with the same mindset that I, as an author, work towards developing in my readers.  While without a doubt complete, this book left me with the need to do further research on the person of Martin Luther, to answer questions not raised in the book, but by the book.  In my humble opinion, this is what a well-written book or a well-delivered sermon should accomplish.

Well done, Dr. Steven J. Lawson!    



Sunday, April 6, 2014

Review - Extreme Prayer by Greg Pruett

Okay, I'll admit it, when this book came up for review my first instinct was to pass on it.  My reason was legitimate.  Prayer, both as a topic and as a practice, has been written on so much that many people are jaded on the subject.  But, with a bit of Spiritual pushing and shoving [by His Holy Spirit of course!], I committed to review Extreme Prayer, and what a blessing it's been for me.

Pruett has managed to introduce the same Scripture(s) on prayer that we'll all had shoved down our throats many times in an entirely new way.  He doesn't approach either the concept of prayer as a whole or the practise of praying as individuals as a requirement or a duty.  By wrapping his life experiences in ministry around solid Biblical teaching on the subject of prayer, the author makes it possible for readers to come away from this one hundred and fourteen page book looking forward to the adventure of a life of prayer with the Lord.  By tying different episodes of his, his families, and his ministry partners' live to the absolutes of Biblical prayer, this author successfully introduces prayer to readers in what I believe to be God's intent.  Scripture doesn't support that prayer should be a dreaded, or a "to be avoided at all cost(s)" part of the Believer's lives.  Prayer is something intended to be a part of Christians' lives that is looked forward to, depended on, and sought after.

The writing of Extreme Prayer is obviously the result of both the inspiration of the Lord's Holy Spirit, and a life lived focused on prayer.

Well done, Greg Pruett!

The book Extreme Prayer was furnished to myself by Tyndale Momentum in consideration for my reviewing the book. In no way was my review influenced by Tyndale Momentum of any other person.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Review: The Rise of Evangelicalism by Mark A. Nolls

The Rise of Evangelicalism
by Mark A. Nolls

As a history buff of a variety of genres, I've accepted my lot in life is to spend a fairly significant portion of my life reading volumes of either dry and dusty or arrogant and pushy accounts of history. Having read this first work in a set of five, I'm already tracking down as many of the remaining four already in publication, and that is because Nolls has proven to me what I've always suspected. The presentation of easily corroborated historical facts, in regards to the growth and development of Evangelicalism, is done in a manner that is anything but arrogant or dry. Another thing that's easily recognized is the focus of the writer in not getting sidetracked, which is really easy to do, especially when writing from a historical perspective.  Finally, although there is much more that I could document in a positive note about this book, I'm going to finish-up by saying that when I was done with the book, I didn't feel that I was finished with the subject. Mark Nolls accomplished what I feel my purpose as a writer is, he left me with the desire to continue researching the subject of Evangelicalism.

Well done Mr. Nolls!

(This Review and others are also available @:, then go to 'Review Central').

Terry a.k.a. k2montana

Sunday, March 9, 2014

It Really Isn't That Hard!

What I'm fixing to say will get me throwed off of quite a few Christmas lists. That's okay though, my wife is always saying that I don't play well with others. This issue has been on my mind for a while, and as I've just finished 'Living Right In A World Gone Wrong' this is a good   a time as any to get this out.

When we pick up our Bibles, irregardless of the translation or version, whether or not it's paperback or leatherbound, and not important whether it's brand new or well-used, they all have in common that they're easy to read and simple to understand. One thing that the hundreds and thousands of 'doctrines' and 'theologies' have in common with the even greater number of denominations in the world is that by the very manner  by which they came to exist, they all have very little to do with God. God's Word, the Holy Bible, is at one end of a spectrum while all of the doctrines, theologies, and denominations are at the other end. Based strictly on Scripture, it's safe for me to say that when we're closest to the Bible end of the spectum, we're also the closest to God and His Will for us.  Necessarily contrary to this position is the [requirement] that the closer we get to the other end of this spectrum, and all that has accumulated there,  the farther from God we get.  I mentioned that it was [Scripturally] safe for me, or anyone, to take this position and it is, but I'm not going to tell you why  just yet. In a day or so I'll take this a little farther, so either check back then, or use the option on the left sidepanel to be updated via Email.

Right now we're in prayer over whether or not to do a book on this issue. As I said earlier, we just wrapped up a book and another is about finished. We do have several outlines ready to go forward on, but we're not sure where the Master Publisher would have us go to just yet.  So please do join us in prayer on this matter.

Many thanks,
Pastor Terry Keiner
Absarokee MT

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Are You Ready?

Why do you suppose it is that so much of the time we either cannot or refuse to choose God as the focus of our lives until we're in a position that He is the only choice we have left?  In the Gospels, Jesus actually extended His invitations specifically to those who were at the bottom of the barrel, so to speak.

And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him.  Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying: "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven, blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.  Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
                                                                                                                       (Matthew 5:1-5    NKJV)               

In this particular Scripture, which is the beginning of what is commonly referred to as 'The Sermon on The Mount', Jesus goes on to include many others in what I've always thought of as an invitation of a sorts.  

At this point, we need to back up just a bit.  To fully appreciate how Jesus came to be delivering The Sermon on The Mount, which many wrongly believe to be when He began His public ministry, we need to do just a bit of background.  After being baptized by John [the Baptist] in the river Jordan, Christ spent forty days in the wilderness, at the end of which He was tempted by satan.  This is when His public ministry begins, and before He delivered The Sermon on The Mount near Capernaum, He'd already preached at Galilee and Nazareth before going to Capernaum, which fulfilled prophecy found in Isaiah nine and forty-two.  Then, going back to the region of Galilee, He recruited the first four of his disciples as well as doing all kinds sickness and possessions.  A huge crowd developed there and followed as He made His way from Galilee to Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and to the area beyond the Jordan River.  It was at this point that He returned to Capernaum, with His huge crowd of followers intact and growing, and delivered The Sermon on The Mount.

When reading through the second half of Matthew chapter four, it becomes obvious that the  focus of Christ was on those who were sick, diseased, poor, and possessed, and this same focus is present in the first five verses of The Sermon on The Mount.  What we need to understand here is what I think of as the 'cultural climate' within the Jewish world at that time.  First of all, Judaism is much more than a religious belief system, it is actually a culture within itself.  What was going on during the time of Christ was that the Jewish culture was so watered down, or distorted, by legalism that the leaders, mainly the Pharisees, pretty much decided who was worthy, or fit, to be a part of the Jewish 'in-crowd.'  A good example of this is found in Luke 18:9-14.

Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:  "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a  Pharisee and the other a tax collector.  The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men -  extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.  I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.'  And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful  to me a sinner!'  I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other;  for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.  (Luke 18:9-14    NJKV)

By and through the earlier Babylonian Talmud, and then later on the Jerusalem Talmud, the leaders of the Judaic world had added at least six hundred 'laws' that had nothing at all to do with God or His Will.  The end result of all of this was that it wasn't just the Gentiles who were pretty much reduced to vermin in the eyes of the mainstream Jews, it was also those Jews who didn't meet the criteria of the Pharisees.  Then the coming of Christ, which was first prophesied of by God Himself there in the garden of Eden, (See Genesis 3:14-15), wasn't exactly what the mainstream Jews had envisioned.  While it was never even hinted at through Old Testament prophecy, the Jewish hierarchy had decided over the four thousand or so years since the first mention of a Messiah that when He did come it would be with a lot of to-do and fanfare, parades and marching bands, festivals and singing.  As we all know, it didn't happen quite like that, and this is one of the major problems that the Jews had with Jesus, He didn't fit in with their ideas and notions of what He should be and do.  This bring us full circle back to where we started, that the focus of Christ during His early public ministry was those who weren't recognized by the 'uppity-up' as being fit for anything.  Perhaps this is why so many of us refuse Christ until we're in the position of having no one else to turn to.  

But, there is a big difference between us today and those Jesus was focused on two-thousand years ago.  Society and culture had decided that those people weren't fit for anything, and a great many of those people had lived in a subsistence lifestyle for generations, with no way to change it.  That's not true today.  We all know people who 'had it all' and then lost it by their own  actions.  In  our world today there are many, many people who were wealthy and accepted one day, and are living in a shelter the next.  Remember the story about the man who built his house on the sand?  There you go, it's the same [figurative] thing going on all around us.  

Okay then, here's the point I've been headed at since we started.  You don''t have to wait until your straw house, built on sand, had collapsed around you to be the wealthiest healthiest person there is.  Unlike some who've been unable to do better not by their own doings and who waste no time coming to the altar, let's not wait until we've lost everything before we turn to Christ.  It says nowhere in the Bible that we have to be poor and broken before He'll accept us, that's something we do on our own.  It's a cycle that only we can  break, and He's standing there, ever so patient, waiting.

How about it?  Has He waited long enough?  Are you ready?

Monday, January 6, 2014

Brunner on Prayer

I'm doing an Article on Prayer, and came across what to me says as much as all of the other, non-Biblical, sources I've researched put together.  I pray that this piece by Emil Brunner, who I admit was controversial in a lot of ways, may bless you as it did me.


"Indeed, the belief in the answering of prayer is victory over the abstract impersonal concept of God, even within Christian theology."

 Emil Brunner
 (The Christian Doctrine of the Church, Faith, and Consummation, Pp. 335)