The eminent, New Testament scholar, Larry Hurtado, has gone to his eternal reward. In addition to my interview, Larry was always very quick to respond to my questions about the New Testament. Grace and greatness are not always found in one person. They were with Larry.
There is much I could say about this book, but I will keep my comments brief.
I typically read about sixty books each year. These are close reads with underlining and marginalia. I peruse hundreds of other books, but that is not reading. There is no doubt that this will easily make my Favorite Reads of 2019.
Remember Death is one of those books that I will use in my teaching, discipleship with men, and gladly recommend far and wide. It is beautifully written, consistently insightful, and thoroughly biblical.
I know it sounds strange to say that this is a book to savor, but it is. We must face our mortality with ruthless honesty, all the utter horror and ugliness. By doing so, we will find, as the author says so well, the incredible promises found in a relationship with Jesus.
Crossway is to be commended for publishing such a terrific piece of work!
I imagine many of you are aware of the recent unpleasantries (yes, a mild word!) between Beth Moore and John MacArthur. I thought you might find my letter to Pastor MacArthur of interest:
Dear Pastor MacArthur,
I heard you preach in person right after Christmas 1977. I was with fifteen friends. We were on our way to a Campus Crusade for Christ conference in southern California. I was a young convert to Christianity. Your message clarified that my faith in Christ was real. Thank you!
In my twenties and early thirties, I was the director of Campus Crusade for Christ at Stanford University. I went through some deep waters of doubt during that time. During one of my lowest moments I heard you deliver a message over the airwaves. It was a great encouragement to me. I wrote you a letter saying so. To my surprise, you wrote back…a personal letter. I still have that letter. Thank you!
In my late thirties and early forties, I had a radio show here in Austin. Most of the time I interviewed authors and leaders of various backgrounds. You were one of my guests and stayed for the entire hour. That alone is quite a commitment, but my show was on Saturday afternoons. Since Sunday is a big day of ministry for you, I was impressed you would give me the entire hour. Thank you!
Most recently, I met one of your sons. Business brought him to Austin. We had breakfast together. I couldn’t believe how much he looks like you! I thought I was looking at the man I heard preach when I was that three-month old Christian. Your son said you are the real deal: a great dad who is uncomfortable with the praise of men. I was tremendously encouraged to hear all that. Thank you!
My own convictions about men and women in the home fall roughly in the complementarian camp, though I might be one of the “softer” types that seems to be a non-category for you. I won’t get into the hermeneutical weeds on that issue because this a short letter not a theological treatise.
I humbly ask you to reconsider the tone of what you said about Beth Moore. For the record, I’ve had my own concerns about her teaching as well. However, your tone came across dismissive and condescending. At the very least, it seems one of you should have mentioned to the chortles of the crowd that this was no laughing matter. Instead, it seemed that you, Todd Friel, and Phil Johnson had no problem with the loud laughter of those gathered that day.
I am now sixty-one and the beneficiary of over forty years of your ministry. From listening to you over the years, I have every confidence that you will seriously consider what I say in light of Scripture. Thank you!
David (George) Moore
This is the fourth book of Scot’s I’ve read. In particular, his Kingdom Conspiracy, made a big impact on me. Pastor Paul was just as impactful.
From time to time instead of a regular review, I like to list a half dozen things I appreciated about a book. Here they are for Pastor Paul:
*Scot’s expertise in handling both the biblical material and ancient history is on wonderful display. The historical material illumines the biblical points in ways that give more color and texture to Paul’s ministry.
*The writing is elegant and accessible.
*Pastor Paul is written in what I would call a “gentle prophetic” spirit. Scot does not pull his punches in telling us the truth about touchy subjects like money and friendship, but one does not feel “beat up” over his candor.
*There are many good expositions on a whole range of subjects. My favorites are probably the ones on friendship and the honor culture of Paul’s time.
*The title is apt, but don’t be mistaken. Pastor Paul is a book that all Christians, even non pastors, can benefit greatly from.
*I greatly enjoy books that show the incredible relevance of knowing the past. Pastor Paul showcases how a growing historical sense gives wisdom for how we live today.
Since this “review” is also on my Amazon account, let me mention that it was easy to give five stars.
There is elegant writing and wonderful insights throughout this terrific book.
I took this book with me on a recent trip to Mexico. It was a terrific companion.
There is much about leisure that most of us do not appreciate. Rybczynski clears the confusion and offers a feast for further reflection.
The author includes many insights from history and different cultures. It is a rewarding read!