Winter 2016

In Print

Confucius for Christians: What an Ancient Chinese Worldview Can Teach Us about Life in Christ, by Gregg Ten Elshof (professor of philosophy), Eerdmans, August 2015. Ten Elshof reflects on perennial human questions with the teachings of both Jesus and Confucius in mind. In examining such subjects as family, learning and ethics, he sets the typical Western worldview against the Confucian world-view and considers how each of them lines up with the teachings of Jesus. He points to much that is deep and helpful in the Confucian tradition, and shows how reflection on the teachings of Confucius can inspire a deeper understanding of what it really means to live the Jesus way.

Thriving In Babylon: Why Hope, Humility and Wisdom Matter in a Godless Culture, Larry Osborne (’74, M.A. ’78, D.Min. ’86), David C. Cook, April 2015. Meet a man forced to live in a fast-changing and godless society. He faced fears about the future, concern for his safety and the discouragement of a world that seemed to be falling apart at warp speed. Sound familiar? His name was Daniel, and with the power of hope, humility and wisdom, he not only thrived, he changed an empire while he was at it. Though he lived thousands of years ago, he has much to teach us today. In Thriving in Babylon, Osborne explores the “adult” story of Daniel to help us not only survive — but actually thrive in an increasingly godless culture.

Seeing in the Dark: Finding God's Light in the Most Unexpected Places, by Nancy Ortberg (’78, M.A. ’83); Tyndale House, July 2015. Christians are supposed to be “the light of the world.” Yet we seem to spend most of our time stumbling in the dark. We want a clearly marked path and a panoramic view of the future, and God gives us only fleeting glimpses of what lies ahead and just enough light to take the next step. So what do we do? We take the next step. From an ancient cave in Turkey to the California coast, Ortberg highlights the often unexpected, sometimes imperceptible, yet always extraordinary means God uses to light our way through even the most painful and challenging moments in life.

Who's Picking Me Up from the Airport?: And Other Questions Single Girls Ask, by Cindy Johnson (’04, M.A. ’06), Zondervan, February 2015. Johnson’s refreshing and comical commentary on adult Christian dating provides readers the much-needed opportunity to laugh and celebrate single life for what it is: joyful and complicated. Beneath the candor and self-deprecation, the book is built on the question, “Does Jesus actually care about dating and singleness? And if so, how does he enter into it?” The result is a powerful and much-needed safe place for vulnerability and honesty around singleness. This book addresses head-on the difficult reality experienced by singles in the church, as Johnson pushes readers to seek Jesus first, even when they don’t get the things they want.

The Natural Sciences: A Student’s Guide, by John A. Bloom (professor of physics), Crossway, January 2015. Whether it’s widely promoted debates streamed over the Internet or a big-budget documentary series on TV, the supposed “conflict” between science and faith remains as prominent as ever. In this accessible guide for students, Bloom introduces readers to the natural sciences from a distinctly Christian perspective. Starting with the classical view of God as the creator and sustainer of the universe, the book lays the biblical foundation for the study of the natural world and explores the history of scientific reflection since Aristotle. Bloom argues that the Christian worldview provides the best grounds for scientific investigation, offering readers the framework they need to think and speak clearly about the pursuit of scientific knowledge.

The Grand Paradox: The Messiness of Life, the Mystery of God and the Necessity of Faith, by Ken Wytsma (M.A. ’01, M.A. ’04), Thomas Nelson, February 2015. The life of Christian faith is and always has been a beautifully awkward reality. Following Jesus is done — can only be done — in the messiness of this world into which we were all born. Yet many Christians expect the walk of faith to be easier, neater and relatively devoid of hassles. So perhaps it’s time for a frank conversation about the true nature of Christian faith. Maybe there are many desperately in need of a clear dialogue about how — despite living in a turbulent, chaotic world — our greatest joy is found in our pursuit of God. In The Grand Paradox, Wytsma seeks to help readers understand that although God can be mysterious, he is in no way absent.

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