George Marsden is widely considered one of the best living historians of American Christianity, if not the best.
This is Marsden’s third book on Jonathan Edwards. His big biography won the prestigious Bancroft Prize.
In this book, Marsden gives us an Edwards for our own time. We perhaps find an unlikely partner in Edwards for helping to navigate our present time, but Marsden makes a compelling case that the 18th century clergyman has much to offer us.
Among other things, Edwards’s love of beauty and the natural world are simply stunning. They are chalked full of implications for how we see the world today.
Whether you know much or little about Edwards, An Infinite Fountain of Light is a terrific read.
I am blessed to receive many amazing books from publishers.
Now almost five months into 2022, Russ Ramsey’s Rembrandt is in the Wind and Robert Gross’s, The Transcendentalists and Their World are my favorite reads of the year.
As I get older (64 now), I get more selective, yet I am happy to say that remarkable books continue to be published. If you are looking for beautiful reflections on art and the Christian life, this book is for you. Ramsey is a pastor, so he knows firsthand the troubles of a terribly broken world. He also faced his own death just shy of his fortieth birthday.
So yes, Ramsey well knows about pain and suffering. He reflects on it beautifully in this book, but he is hardly a cynic. Ramsey’s anchor is firmly placed in the truths of Scripture.
If you are looking for a careful curator of both soul and art, this book is highly recommended. I recommend it with great gusto!
Andrew Klavan has written a terrific book (Amazon link and two videos are below). His keen insights and marvelous writing are on full display.
Instead of a typical book review, I am going to list six things that I appreciated about TheTruth and Beauty:
*Klavan is an honest, but not cynical writer. It’s not easy to write truthfully while still holding to a compelling hope, but Klavan does.
*There is a winsome and penetrating critique of materialism.
*Good sketches of key individuals and historic movements like the French Revolution provide helpful context.
*Klavan’s book contains a convincing account of how the Romantic poets (even the godless ones) have much to offer Christians.
*The author clearly did his homework by familiarizing himself with solid scholarship, but he does not write about pedantic details that most people do not care about.
* Last, and hardly least: there is a joyful confidence in the Bible. Klavan is an adult convert toChristianity, so he takes nothing for granted. His thoughtfulness and child-like faith in God are edifying.
I have wanted to see this for many years, and finally did. Absolutely great! I love seeing excellence. And to think that so many are consumed with excellence when it is only for a perishable wreath? How much more ought I as a Christian shoot for excellence! (I Cor. 9:24-27) It also makes me long for churches to be more like a great restaurant.