New Arrivals in Religion & Spirituality

Insights on Galatians, Ephesians

Charles R. Swindoll
The Engaging the New Testament Series by Dr. Charles R. Swindoll is the 'major legacy project' of Swindoll's life as a pastor and Bible teacher for the past forty-five years. The series will be comprised of fifteen volumes focusing on all the books of the New Testament---the Four Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, the twenty-two letters, and the book of Revelation. Rather than a technical, exegetical commentary mining the details of the Greek text, this will have a narrative flavor with a strong emphasis on effective communication taking the truths of the New Testament and providing insight that enables people to live out the truth in all aspects of contemporary daily life.

Lyotard and Theology

Lieven Boeve
Lieven Boeve contextualises Lyotard's writings and approach with reference to his theological thought. By focusing on issues such as the nature of the differend within language, the sublime experience and our (in)ability to witness to the breakdowns of language and representation, Lyotard's thought provokes theology to reconsider its own foundations.Taking up issues such as a highly relevant critique of capitalism, itself vital to today's understanding of Christian praxis in a global world, Lyotard offers us a perspective by which to re-evaluate Christianity beyond its being a hegemonic discourse as it moves toward being a discourse concerned with love. Through exploring the Christian narrative as an 'open' one, Boeve aims to make use of new possibilities for theology through a renewed comprehension of Lyotard's significance for today.

Interpreting 4 Ezra and 2 Baruch: International Studies

Gabriele Boccaccini
In this volume Gabriele Boccaccini and Jason M. Zurawski collect together essays from leading international scholars on the books of 4 Ezra and 2 Baruch. The literature of the Second Temple Period has become increasingly studied in recent years as scholars have begun to recognize the importance of these texts for a developed understanding of Rabbinic and Christian origins.

Through close readings of the texts themselves, examining the books in comparison with other Jewish apocalyptic literature and early Christian materials, and reading the texts in light of their social and historical settings, the fifteen papers collected herein significantly advance the current scholarly conversation on these defining Jewish apocalypses written at the end of the first century CE, and they shed light on the everlasting legacy of apocalyptic ideas in both Christianity and Judaism.

Theological Interpretation and Isaiah 53: A Critical Comparison of Bernhard Duhm, Brevard Childs, and Alec Motyer

Charles E. Shepherd
This study brings together the hermeneutical approaches of three Old Testament scholars, specifically as they pertain to the interpretation of Isaiah 52.13-53.12 in the framework of Christian theology. Contemporary discourse and hermeneutical discussions have led to the development of a point of confusion in theological hermeneutics, focusing on what relationship older frames of reference may have with those more recent. Bernhard Duhm is presented as a history-of-Religion scholar who does not easily abide by popular understandings of that school. Brevard Childs moves outward from particular historical judgments regarding the nature of redaction and form criticism, attempting to arrive at a proximately theological reading of the poem. Alec Motyer’s evangelical commitments represent a large constituency of contemporary theological readership, and a popular understanding of Isaiah 53.

Following a summary and critical engagement of each interpreter on his own terms, the study analyzes the use of rhetoric behind the respective readings of Isaiah 53, and proposes theological reading as a highly eclectic undertaking, distanced from the demarcations of ‘pre-critical’, ‘critical’, and ‘post-critical’.

The Body as Property: Physical Disfigurement in Biblical Law

Sandra Jacobs
The Body As Property indicates that physical disfigurement functioned in biblical law to verify legal property acquisition, when changes in the status of dependents were formalized. It is based on the reality the cuneiform script, in particular, was developed in Sumer and Mesopotamia for the purpose of record keeping: to provide legal proof of ownership where the inscription of a tablet evidenced the sale, or transfer, of property. Legitimate property acquisition was as important in biblical law, where physical disfigurements marked dependents, in a similar way that the veil or the head covering identified a wife or concubine in ancient Assyrian and Judean societies.

This is primarily substantiated in the accounts of prescriptive disfigurements: namely circumcision and the piercing of a slave's ear, both of which were required only when a son, or slave, was acquired permanently. It is further argued that legal entitlement was relevant also to the punitive disfigurements recorded in Exodus 21:22-24, and Deuteronomy 25:11-12, where the physical violation of women was of concern solely as an infringement of male property rights.

The Audience of Matthew: An Appraisal of the Local Audience Thesis

Cedric E. W. Vine
This book seeks to establish the inadequacy of readings of the Gospel of Matthew as intended for, and a reflection of, a local audience or community. Despite repeated challenges, the local audience thesis continues to dominate a large proportion of Matthean scholarship, and, as such, the issue of determining the Gospel's audience remains an open question.

This book posits four main critiques. First, the assumptions which underpin the text-focused process of identifying the Gospel's audience, whether deemed to be local, Jewish, or universal, lack clarity. Literary entities such as the implied reader, the intended reader, or the authorial audience, prove inadequate as a means of identifying the Gospel's audience. Second, local audience readings necessarily exclude plot-related developments and are both selective and restrictive in their treatment of characterisation. Much is lost or ignored, as a coherent and simplified audience context is derived from the complex narrative world of the Gospel. Third, this book argues that many in an audience of the Gospel would have incorporated their experience of hearing Matthew within pre-existing mental representations shaped by Mark or other early traditions. Thus, they would have understood the Gospel as relating to events and settings distinct from their own context, regardless of the degree to which they identified with characters or events in the Gospel. Fourth, this book argues that early Christian audiences were largely heterogeneous in terms of ethnicity, age, sex, wealth, familiarity with Christian traditions, and levels of commitment. As such, the aural reception of the Gospel would have resulted in a variety of impacts. A number of these critiques extend beyond the local audience option and for this reason this thesis does not posit a particular audience for the Gospel.

Was Noah Good?: Finding Favour in the Flood Narrative

Carol M. Kaminski
The juxtaposition of 'favour' and 'righteousness' in the flood narrative raises an interpretative and theological problem: Is Noah chosen because of divine favour or because of his piety ? Source-critical scholars identify two different theologies by J and P: J understands Noah's election to be an act of grace whereas P emphasizes Noah's righteousness as the basis for his election. Scholars who interpret the flood narrative according to its final form argue that Noah is chosen because he is righteous. This view is problematic, however, since in the primaeval history grace is shown to the 'undeserving', thus it is characteristically unmerited.

This book entails an exegetical analysis of, and according to, the final form of the text, with particular attention being given to the meaning and function of these verses in the Toledot structure. Kaminski argues against the commonly held view that Noah finds favour because he is righteous, and seeks to demonstrate that divine favour is unmerited in accordance with the theme of grace in the primaeval history and in Genesis as a whole. Thus what sets the flood story in motion is not Noah's righteousness, but the divine favour he finds.

You Are My Son: The Family of God in the Epistle to the Hebrews

Amy L. B. Peeler
The author of Hebrews calls God 'Father' only twice in his sermon. This fact could account for scholarship's lack of attention to the familial dynamics that run throughout the letter. Peeler argues, however, that by having God articulate his identity as Father through speaking Israel's Scriptures at the very beginning and near the end of his sermon, the author sets a familial framework around his entire exhortation. The author enriches the picture of God's family by continually portraying Jesus as God's Son, the audience as God's many sons, the blessings God bestows as inheritance, and the trials God allows as pedagogy. The recurrence of the theme coalesces into a powerful ontological reality for the audience: because God is the Father of Jesus Christ, they too are the sons of God. But even more than the model of sonship, Jesus' relationship with his Father ensures that the children of God will endure the race of faith to a successful finish because they are an integral part of comprehensive inheritance promised by his Father and secured by his obedience. Because of the familial relationship between God and Jesus, the audience of Hebrews - God's children - can remain in the house of God forever.

Mockery and Secretism in the Social World of Mark's Gospel

Dietmar Neufeld
Having established the context of mockery and shame in Ancient Mediterranean cultures, Dietmar Neufeld shows how Mark presented Jesus as a person with a sense of honour and with a sense of shame, willing to accept the danger of being visible and the mockery it attracted. Neufeld also considers the social functions of ridicule/mockery more broadly as strategies of social sanction, leading to a better understanding of how social, religious, and political practices and discourse variously succeeded or failed in Mark.

Finally, Neufeld investigates the author of Mark's preoccupation with ‘secrecy', showing that the author of Mark's disposition to secrecy in his narrative heightened when the dangers of scorn and ridicule from crowds or persons became pressing concerns. In a fiercely competitive literary environment where mocking and being mocked were ever present dangers, Mark, in his pursuit of authority gains it by establishing a reputation of possessing authentic, secret knowledge. In short, the so-called secrecy motif is shown to be deployed for specific, strategic reasons that differ from those that have been traditionally advanced.

Sacra Scriptura: How "Non-Canonical" Texts Functioned in Early Judaism and Early Christianity

James H. Charlesworth
Many of the writings deemed 'apocryphal' and 'pseudepigraphical'were in circulation in the early centuries of Judaism and Christianity. Their influences and impacts on the development of early communities, and the development of Jewish and Christian thoughts, have not yet been sufficiently examined. While this judgment is especially true for the so-called Christian Apocrypha, it also applies for other writings that were not included in the Jewish and Christian Bibles and nor in other sacred collections of Scripture,like Rabbinics and Patristics.

Most of these ancient writings functioned, to some degree, as sacred texts or scripture sacra scriptura in the communities in which they were produced and in others to which they circulated.This volume focuses on how some of these forgotten voices were heard within numerous early religious communities, helping to remove the distressing silence in many areas of the ancient world.

The Ammonites: Elites, Empires, and Sociopolitical Change (1000-500 BCE)

Craig W. Tyson
This book investigates the archaeological, epigraphic, and biblical evidence for the course of Ammon's history, setting it squarely within the context of ancient Near Eastern imperialism. Drawing on cross-cultural parallels from the archaeology of empires, Tyson elucidates the dynamic processes by which the local Ammonite elite made the cousins of biblical Israel visible to history. Tyson explain changes in the region of Ammon during the Iron Age II, namely the increasing numbers of locally produced elite items as well as imports, growth in the use of writing for administrative and display purposes, and larger numbers of sedentary settlements; in the light of the transformative role that the Neo-Assyrian and Neo-Babylonian empires played in the ancient Near East. The study also widens the conversation to consider cross-cultural examples of how empires affect peripheral societies.

Text, Context and the Johannine Community: A Sociolinguistic Analysis of the Johannine Writings

David A. Lamb
Text, Context and the Johannine Community adopts a new approach to the social context of the Johannine writings by drawing on modern sociolinguistic theory. Sociolinguistics emphasizes language as a social phenomenon, which can be analysed with reference not only to its broad context of culture, but also, through the use of register analysis, to its narrower context of situation.

The Johannine writings have increasingly been seen as the product of a distinct Johannine Community, depicted by some scholars as a sectarian group, opposed both to wider Jewish society and to other Christian groups. This model has largely been constructed on historical-critical grounds, yet given our lack of reliable external information about the origin of the Johannine writings, a more fruitful approach may be to examine their lexico-grammatical and discourse features to determine what these imply about interpersonal relationships. This study compares selected 'narrative asides' from the Gospel of John with a passage section from 1 John and with the two shorter Johannine Epistles. It concludes that register analysis of these texts does not support the idea of a close-knit sectarian group.

Lyotard and Theology

Lieven Boeve
Lieven Boeve contextualises Lyotard's writings and approach with reference to his theological thought. By focusing on issues such as the nature of the differend within language, the sublime experience and our (in)ability to witness to the breakdowns of language and representation, Lyotard's thought provokes theology to reconsider its own foundations.Taking up issues such as a highly relevant critique of capitalism, itself vital to today's understanding of Christian praxis in a global world, Lyotard offers us a perspective by which to re-evaluate Christianity beyond its being a hegemonic discourse as it moves toward being a discourse concerned with love. Through exploring the Christian narrative as an 'open' one, Boeve aims to make use of new possibilities for theology through a renewed comprehension of Lyotard's significance for today.

Being There

Marie Louise Guste Nix

Historical documents confirm that Jesus Christ toured Israel during the first century, healing, expelling demons, and raising the dead to life. His powerful teaching, His love, and His rising from the tomb helped identify Him as the Messiah sent to save mankind from sin and death. In Being There, we hear from special individuals chosen to be present when Jesus changed history forever. We hear powerful stories from the voices of the prophet Simeon, John the Baptist, the apostles Peter and James, His mother Mary and His father Joseph, and many others. These sensitive accounts given by eyewitnesses will awaken your imagination, bring history to life, and perhaps deepen your love for the Lord of life.

The Good Dad: Becoming the Father You Were Meant to Be

Jim Daly
It’s never too late to be a better father Jim Daly, president and CEO of Focus on the Family, is an expert in fatherhood---in part because his own 'fathers' failed him so badly. His biological dad was an alcoholic. His stepfather deserted him. His foster father accused Jim of trying to kill him. All were out of Jim's life by the time he turned 13. Isn’t it odd---and reminiscent of the hand of God---that the director of the leading organization on family turned out to be a guy whose own background as a kid and son were pretty messed up? Or could it be that successful parenting is discovered not in the perfect, peaceful household but in the midst of battles and messy situations, where God must constantly be called to the scene? That is the mystery unraveled in this book. Using his own expertise, humor, and inexhaustible wealth of stories, Jim will show you that God can make you a good dad, a great dad, in spite of the way you’ve grown up and in spite of the mistakes you’ve made. Maybe even because of them. It’s not about becoming a perfect father. It’s about trying to become a better father, each and every day. It's about building relationships with your children through love, grace, patience, and fun---and helping them grow into the men and women they’re meant to be.

Beyond the Broken Church: How to Leave Church Problems Behind Without Leaving the Church

Sarah Raymond Cunningham
Beyond the Broken Church is a collection of heartfelt learnings from Sarah Cunningham, a young adult raised in the faith, about the church she's not always sure she wants to be part of. The book engages concerns of a disillusioned generation head on and offers hope and honest, practical ideas for moving beyond one’s frustrations. In the end Beyond the Broken Church tells a story that will be familiar to many: the journey of overcoming disillusionment and staying the course. This revised and expanded version of the popular book Dear Church revisits the existing book with additional chapters, fresh statistics, new insights into why people are leaving the church, and a resource guide for those who care about the disillusioned and want to understand them better. Beyond the Broken Church will be a breath of fresh air to others who have experienced frustration in church as well as an insider’s guide for those seeking to understand current trends in church attendance, particularly among the younger generation.

Soul Keeping Study Guide: Caring for the Most Important Part of You

Zondervan,
In Soul Keeping, John Ortberg helps Christians rediscover their soul---the best connection to God there is---and find out why it’s hurting and why neglecting it has set so many believers so far back spiritually. In this six-session, video-based small group Bible study, Ortberg shows that caring for your soul is necessary for your Christian life. John shows participants what your soul is, why it is important, how to assess your soul’s health, and how to care for it so that we can have a meaningful and beautiful life with God and others. When you nurture your soul your life in this world will come to make sense again; you can find your way back to God from hopelessness, depression, relationship struggles, and a lack of fulfillment. Your soul’s resting place is in God, and John Ortberg wants to take participants to that home. This study guide includes discussion questions, video notes, and in-between studies and is designed for use with the Soul Keeping DVD (sold separately). Sessions include: Filling the Hole in Your Soul Why God Made You With a Soul What's Soul Got To Do With It Finding Your Soul's True Home Empty Souls and Full Garages Why We Have a Soul, Brothers and Sisters

Soul Keeping: Caring For the Most Important Part of You

John Ortberg
The soul is NOT 'a theological and abstract subject.' The soul is the coolest, eeriest, most mysterious, evocative, crucial, sacred, eternal, life-directing, fragile, indestructible, controversial, expensive dimension of your existence. Jesus said it’s worth more than the world. You'd be an idiot not to prize it above all else. Shouldn't you get pretty clear on exactly what it is? Shouldn't you know what it runs on? Wouldn't it be worth knowing how to care for it? Two things are for sure. One is: you have a soul. The other is: if you don't look after this one you won’t be issued a replacement. Bestselling author John Ortberg writes another classic that will help readers discover their soul and take their relationship with God to the next level.

Redefining Leadership: Character-Driven Habits of Effective Leaders

Joseph M. Stowell
Is successful leadership measured simply by the outcomes a leader achieves, or is there another---more essential---yardstick for measuring success? In Redefining Leadership, author, pastor, and college president Joe Stowell shows us that the best leaders are driven by Christ-formed character, and that truly successful leadership is not defined by the standards of this world but by the counter-intuitive practices and perspectives of the Kingdom of Christ. With compelling personal stories and insights from the Bible, he highlights the contrast between these two radically different leadership styles and demonstrates that the teaching and example of King Jesus, the world’s most unlikely leader, is the only model of leadership that leads to maximum results, results that will have an eternal impact.

Where the Wind Leads: A Refugee Family's Miraculous Story of Loss, Rescue, and Redemption

Vinh Chung
Back Cover:

“The account of Dr. Chung and his family will inspire you to believe in second chances and miracles and the God who gives them both.”

-Max Lucado, New York Times best-selling author

My name is Vinh Chung.

This is a story that spans two continents, ten decades, and eleven thousand miles.

When I was three and a half years old, my family was forced to flee Vietnam in June 1979, a place we had never heard of somewhere in the heartland of America.

Several weeks later my family lay half-dead from dehydration in a derelict fishing boat jammed with ninety-three refugees lost in the middle of the South China Sea. We arrived in the United States with nothing but the clothes on our backs and unable to speak a single word of English.

Today my family holds twenty-one university degrees.

How we got from there to here is quite a story.

Where the Wind Leads is the remarkable account of Vinh Chung and his refugee family’s daring escape from communist oppression for the chance of a better life in America. It’s a story of personal sacrifice, redemption, endurance against almost insurmountable odds, and what it truly means to be American.

All author royalties from the sale of this book will go to benefit World Vision.

Flap Copy:

Vinh Chung was born in South Vietnam, just eight months after it fell to the communists in 1975. His family was wealthy, controlling a rice-milling empire worth millions; but within months of the communist takeover, the Chungs lost everything and were reduced to abject poverty.

Knowing that their children would have no future under the new government, the Chungs decided to flee the country. In 1979, they joined the legendary “boat people” and sailed into the South China Sea, despite knowing that an estimated two hundred thousand of their countrymen had already perished at the hands of brutal pirates and violent seas.

Where the Wind Leads follows Vinh Chung and his family on their desperate journey from pre-war Vietnam, through pirate attacks on a lawless sea, to a miraculous rescue and a new home in the unlikely town of Fort Smith, Arkansas. There Vinh struggled against poverty, discrimination, and a bewildering language barrier—yet still managed to graduate from Harvard Medical School.

Where the Wind Leads is Vinh’s tribute to the courage and sacrifice of his parents, a testimony to his family’s faith, and a reminder to people everywhere that the American dream, while still possible, carries with it a greater responsibility.

God and the Gay Christian: The Biblical Case in Support of Same-Sex Relationships

Matthew Vines

God and the Gay Christian is a game changer. Winsome, accessible, and carefully researched, every page is brought to life by the author’s clear love for Scripture and deep, persistent faith. With this book, Matthew Vines emerges as one of my generation’s most important Christian leaders, not only on matters of sexuality but also on what it means to follow Jesus with wisdom, humility, and grace.  Prepare to be challenged and enlightened, provoked and inspired. Read with an open heart and mind, and you are bound to be changed.”
— Rachel Held Evans, author of A Year of Biblical Womanhood and Faith Unraveled

As a young Christian man, Matthew Vines harbored the same basic hopes of most young people: to someday share his life with someone, to build a family of his own, to give and receive love. But when he realized he was gay, those hopes were called into question. The Bible, he’d been taught, condemned gay relationships.
 
Feeling the tension between his understanding of the Bible and the reality of his same-sex orientation, Vines devoted years of intensive research into what the Bible says about homosexuality. With care and precision, Vines asked questions such as:
 
• Do biblical teachings on the marriage covenant preclude same-sex marriage or not?
• How should we apply the teachings of Jesus to the gay debate?
• What does the story of Sodom and Gomorrah really say about human relationships?
• Can celibacy be a calling when it is mandated, not chosen?
• What did Paul have in mind when he warned against same-sex relations?
 
Unique in its affirmation of both an orthodox faith and sexual diversity, God and the Gay Christian is likely to spark heated debate, sincere soul search­ing, even widespread cultural change. Not only is it a compelling interpretation of key biblical texts about same-sex relations, it is also the story of a young man navigating relationships with his family, his hometown church, and the Christian church at large as he expresses what it means to be a faithful gay Christian.




From the Hardcover edition.

Choosing the Jesus Way: American Indian Pentecostals and the Fight for the Indigenous Principle

Angela Tarango
Choosing the Jesus Way uncovers the history and religious experiences of the first American Indian converts to Pentecostalism. Focusing on the Assemblies of God denomination, the story begins in 1918, when white missionaries fanned out from the South and Midwest to convert Native Americans in the West and other parts of the country. Drawing on new approaches to the global history of Pentecostalism, Angela Tarango shows how converted indigenous leaders eventually transformed a standard Pentecostal theology of missions in ways that reflected their own religious struggles and advanced their sovereignty within the denomination.

Key to the story is the Pentecostal "indigenous principle," which encourages missionaries to train local leadership in hopes of creating an indigenous church rooted in the culture of the missionized. In Tarango's analysis, the indigenous principle itself was appropriated by the first generation of Native American Pentecostals, who transformed it to critique aspects of the missionary project and to argue for greater religious autonomy. More broadly, Tarango scrutinizes simplistic views of religious imperialism and demonstrates how religious forms and practices are often mutually influenced in the American experience.

The Church of Mercy

Pope Francis
"A magnificent book, bursting with profound spiritual insights, from a man who has quickly become of the greatest spiritual teachers of our time." --James Martin, SJ, author of Jesus: A Pilgrimage

In the year since he was elected, Pope Francis’s simple message of mercy, service, and renewal has spread to every corner of the world. Through his gentle demeanor, selfless actions, and welcoming call for service to others, Pope Francis has captured the attention of a world longing for an authentic message of hope—we want to hear what he has to say.

Collected from Pope Francis’s speeches, homilies, and papers presented during the first year of his papacy, The Church of Mercy is the first Vatican-authorized book detailing his vision for the Catholic Church. From how to be citizens of the world to answering God’s call for evangelization, Pope Francis's deep wisdom reminds us that the Church must move beyond its own walls and joyfully bring God's mercy wherever suffering, division, or injustice exists.

Named TIME Magazine’s 2013 “Person of the Year,” Pope Francis is helping the Church continue toward an authentic Christianity that is faithful to the Gospel and resonant with the world’s greatest needs. The Church of Mercy encourages each of us to ignite the flame within to help share the light of Christ and revitalize the Church.

Dads and Daughters

James C. Dobson
She’ll always be your girl.

Whether your daughter is still small or all grown up, she holds a special place in her dad’s heart forever. Today, celebrate the gifts and blessings of the unique relationship between dads and their girls with this inspirational book by family counselor and widely acclaimed parenting expert Dr. James Dobson.

Based on the New York Times bestseller Bringing Up Girls, Dads and Daughters is a beautiful tribute to a dad’s role in his daughter’s life. It’s an insightful collection of wisdom for dads on developing and preserving a truly exceptional connection with their daughters. And it’s a joyful celebration of the lifelong bond of love they share.

Top Selling in Religion & Spirituality

Heaven is for Real: A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back

Todd Burpo

“A beautifully written glimpse into heaven that will encourage those who doubt and thrill those who believe.”

—Ron Hall, coauthor of Same Kind of Different as Me

“Do you remember the hospital, Colton?” Sonja said. “Yes, mommy, I remember,” he said. “That’s where the angels sang to me.”

When Colton Burpo made it through an emergency appendectomy, his family was overjoyed at his miraculous survival. What they weren’t expecting, though, was the story that emerged in the months that followed—a story as beautiful as it was extraordinary, detailing their little boy’s trip to heaven and back.

Colton, not yet four years old, told his parents he left his body during the surgery–and authenticated that claim by describing exactly what his parents were doing in another part of the hospital while he was being operated on. He talked of visiting heaven and relayed stories told to him by people he met there whom he had never met in life, sharing events that happened even before he was born. He also astonished his parents with descriptions and obscure details about heaven that matched the Bible exactly, though he had not yet learned to read.

With disarming innocence and the plainspoken boldness of a child, Colton tells of meeting long-departed family members. He describes Jesus, the angels, how “really, really big” God is, and how much God loves us. Retold by his father, but using Colton’s uniquely simple words, Heaven Is for Real offers a glimpse of the world that awaits us, where as Colton says, “Nobody is old and nobody wears glasses.”

Heaven Is for Real will forever change the way you think of eternity, offering the chance to see, and believe, like a child.

Heaven is for Real Movie Edition: A Little Boy's Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back

Todd Burpo
“This story has incredible intrigue and emotional power.”

--Randall Wallace, Director Heaven Is for Real, We Were Soldiers, and Secretariat

“Do you remember the hospital, Colton?” Sonja said.“Yes, mommy, I remember,” he said. “That’s where the angels sang to me.”

When four-year-old Colton Burpo made it through an emergency appendectomy his family was overjoyed at his miraculous survival. What they weren't expecting, though, was the story that emerged in the following months—a story as beautiful as it was extraordinary, detailing their little boy’s trip to heaven and back.

This true story, retold by his father but using Colton’s uniquely simple words, offers a glimpse of the world that awaits us, where as Colton says, “Nobody is old and nobody wears glasses.”

Heaven is for Real will forever change the way you think of eternity, offering the chance to see, and believe like a child.

Bonus material in this special movie edition includes:

  • Photos from the movie set
  • Updates from father, Todd, and son, Colton, on recent events including the making-of-the-movie experience
  • “From the Set” Q&A’s with the movie’s filmmakers and actors

Alive: A Cold-Case Approach to the Resurrection

J. Warner Wallace
"If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins" (1 Cor. 15:17).
 
The resurrection. As far as doctrines go, it's a game changer. Many accept the resurrection without giving it much thought. But isn't something so important worthy of our wrestling with it? What if we approached the issue of the resurrection in an unbiased manner and assessed it as a cold case detective would evaluate a crime scene? Author J. Warner Wallace is a cold-case detective. He also used to be an atheist. Follow along in this brief presentation of his approach in applying his detective's expertise to the accounts of the resurrection. Wallace believes the case is nothing but compelling: Jesus is alive!

Start Here: Beginning a Relationship with Jesus

David Dwight
Are you wondering what saying yes to following Jesus really means? Do you want to know more about Christianity but you’re not sure what, or how, to ask? Are you just beginning in a new faith in Jesus Christ? Then Start Here. Written by two authors who also know what it’s like to seek God, Start Here answers questions such as: If God is real, now what?What is the relationship between God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit?What does the church have to do with my life and my faith?Why did Jesus have to die?Isn’t grace too good to be true?Can I accept that Jesus is the way to God? Following Jesus isn’t about rules—it’s all about relationship. So start here to find practical help and encouraging stories about what authentic Christianity looks like. Welcome to the journey of a lifetime.
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Four Blood Moons: Something Is About to Change

John Hagee
Over the last 500 years, blood-red moons have fallen on the first day of Passover three separate times. These occurrences were connected to some of the most significant days in Jewish history: 1492 (the final year of the Spanish Inquisition when Jews were expelled from Spain), 1948 (statehood for Israel and the War of Independence) and 1967 (the Six-Day War). Every heavenly body is controlled by the unseen hand of God, which signals coming events to humanity. There are no solar or lunar accidents. The next series of four blood moons occurs at Passover and Sukkot in 2014 and 2015. In this riveting book, Hagee explores what these blood moons mean and why Christians must understand these signs and what they bode both for Israel and the world. Joel 2 and Acts 2 both state: "And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood and fire and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness [eclipse] and the moon into blood [eclipse] before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes."

Crucify!: Why the Crowd Killed Jesus

Timothy J. Stoner
An Ancient Murder Mystery
 
On Sunday they jammed the streets celebrating his arrival. But on Friday they were screaming for his blood.

What prompted this stunning reversal? Why did this man’s followers and friends demand his death?

Crucify! reveals the motive behind the most heinous murder of all time. Timothy J. Stoner mines the Gospels to expose Jesus’s secret agenda and uncovers his dangerous and provocative mission. Is there something about this young Rabbi that we have failed to understand or appreciate?

Answering these questions raises another—one that is more troubling: If we’d been there, would we have joined with the scandalized crowd crying Crucify?

Hell Is Real (But I Hate to Admit It)

Brian Jones
Does hell matter? Pastor Brian Jones wants readers to know the truth.  Jones believes that the reason most Christians don’t tell their friends about Jesus has nothing to do with not knowing how—it’s because they don’t think they need to. As Jones writes, the first four years he was a pastor, he didn’t believe in hell himself. Today, he shares his story of discovering the truth that hell exists—and why many Christians are afraid to believe in it. Hell Is Real motivates Christians who have grown complacent in their view of hell. Drawing on the teachings of Jesus, Jones leads readers into a head-on collision with apocalyptic urgency—the all-consuming, inspiring conviction that will overcome readers when they realize that hell is real and they can help save people from going there.

 

Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence

Sarah Young

After many years of writing her own words in her prayer journal, missionary Sarah Young decided to be more attentive to the Savior's voice and begin listening for what He was saying. So with pen in hand, she embarked on a journey that forever changed her—and many others around the world.

In these powerful pages are the words and Scriptures Jesus lovingly laid on her heart. Words of reassurance, comfort, and hope. Words that have made her increasingly aware of His presence and allowed her to enjoy His peace.

Jesus is calling out to you in the same way. Maybe you share the author’s need for a great sense of “God with you”. Or perhaps Jesus seems distant without you knowing why. Or maybe you have wandered farther from Him that you ever imagined you would. Here is a year’s worth of daily readings from Young’s journals to bring you closer to Christ and move your time with Him from monologue to a dialogue.

Each day is written as if Jesus Himself were speaking to you. Because He is. Do you hear Him calling?

I Declare: 31 Promises to Speak Over Your Life

Joel Osteen
Broken into thirty-one segments, this book defines the most powerful blessings in Scripture and encourages readers to declare one each day for a month. The declarations will affirm God's blessings in the area of health, family legacy, decisions, finances, thoughts, outlook, and overcoming obstacles.

The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For?

Rick Warren
10 years ago, Rick Warren wrote The Purpose Driven Life, which became the bestselling hardback non-fiction book in history, and is the second most-translated book in the world, after the Bible. PDL has inspired and changed tens of millions of lives ... more than any modern book. NOW, Rick has updated and expanded the book with new chapters on the greatest barriers to living your purpose, plus 42 video introductions to each chapter theme, and 42 additional audio messages that go deeper into each chapter. He has also created a new small group curriculum and new sermon series for pastors, and new follow-up events to conserve the evangelistic and discipleship results you will experience. In the original 40 Days of Purpose campaign, churches averaged 28% growth in attendance, and over 100% growth in small group Bible study! People WANT to know their purpose in life! The Purpose Driven Life will enable a new generation in your church to discover God’s purposes for their lives and empower your church with a fresh new wind of hope, joy, and vitality!

The Work of Christ: What the Events of Jesus' Life Mean for You

R. C. Sproul

“The work of Jesus reveals to us who He is. The work and the person may be distinguished but never separated.”—Dr. R. C. Sproul Most Christians recognize the importance of Christ’s death and resurrection. But how many of us understand the theological significance of Jesus’ actions before and after the Crucifixion? In The Work of Christ, Dr. R. C. Sproul looks at every aspect of Jesus’ life and work, addressing such life-changing topics as:
  • Why Jesus’ baptism is relevant for our salvation
  • The similarities and differences between the temptation of the first Adam and the temptation of Jesus, the “second Adam"
  • How God uses song to celebrate his redemptive acts
  • Why the Last Supper marks the beginning of a greater exodus than that of the Old Testament
  • How Jesus’ death and resurrection are grounded in the eternal covenant among the persons of the Trinity\
  • Why Jesus’ ascension makes a difference in our lives today
  • What we know and don’t know about Jesus’ return
Moving from Jesus’ existence from before creation through His incarnation, boyhood, adulthood, death, resurrection, and return, Dr. Sproul guides you to a deeper understanding of God’s beautiful promise and purpose behind the works of Christ’s life.

Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 7: 1861

Charles H. Spurgeon
Seventh volume of Charles Spurgeon sermons preached in 1861 includes 61 sermons:

• A Sermon for the Week of Prayer
• Portraits of Christ
• Words of Expostulation
• The Christ of Patmos
• The Earnest of Heaven
• The Tabernacle — Outside the Camp
• Adoption
• None But Jesus
• None But Jesus — Second Part
• The Glorious Right Hand of the Lord
• The Shulamite’s Choice Prayer
• Humility
• The Silver Trumpet
• The Great Supreme
• The March!
• The First Sermon in the Tabernacle
• Evangelical Congratulations
• Opening Services
• Meeting of the Neighboring Churches
• Christ Set Forth As A Propitiation
• The Interest of Christ and His People in Each Other
• Temple Glories
• Public Meeting of Our London Baptist Brethren
• Public Meeting of the Various Denominations
• Christ’s Finished Work
• Perfect Cleansing
• Meeting of Our Own Church
• Christian Baptism
• The Last Census
• Exposition of the Doctrines of Grace
• The First Resurrection
• Trust in God — True Wisdom
• The Church — Conservative and Aggressive
• “Even So, Father!”
• Jehovah Tsidkenu: the Lord Our Righteousness
• Climbing the Mountain
• Fire! Fire! Fire!
• The New Nature
• A Peal of Bells
• Our Miseries, Messengers of Mercy
• Jacob’s Waking Exclamation
• The Joint Heirs and Their Divine Portion
• The Broken Column
• Intercessory Prayer
• The Triumphal Entry Into Jerusalem
• The Infallibility of God’s Purpose
• Natural or Spiritual?
• Accidents, Not Punishments
• Fellowship with God
• Not Now, But Hereafter!
• Infant Salvation
• God’s First Words to the First Sinner
• To Die or Not to Die!
• The Fullness of Christ — Received!
• The Shield of Faith
• Scourge For Slumbering Souls
• Bread For the Hungry
• The Roaring Lion
• Abram and the Ravenous Birds
• “It is Finished!”
• The Peacemaker

Battlefield of the Mind: Winning the Battle in Your Mind

Joyce Meyer
In celebration of selling 3 million copies, FaithWords is publishing a special updated edition of BATTLEFIELD OF THE MIND.

Worry, doubt, confusion, depression, anger and feelings of condemnation: all these are attacks on the mind. If readers suffer from negative thoughts, they can take heart! Joyce Meyer has helped millions win these all-important battles. In her most popular bestseller ever, the beloved author and minister shows readers how to change their lives by changing their minds.

She teaches how to deal with thousands of thoughts that people think every day and how to focus the mind the way God thinks. And she shares the trials, tragedies, and ultimate victories from her own marriage, family, and ministry that led her to wondrous, life-transforming truth--and reveals her thoughts and feelings every step of the way.

This special updated edition includes an additional introduction and updated content throughout the book.

You Can Begin Again: No Matter What, It's Never Too Late

Joyce Meyer
It's never too late for a new beginning. Look closely and you'll see that theme all through the Bible. Page after page, God delights in turning tragic endings into new beginnings. A childless woman conceives in her old age; a fearful, self-conscious shepherd becomes a leader of millions; and a prostitute becomes a wife and mother in the lineage of Christ. Every biblical fresh start reveals the amazing, awe-inspiring hope we have for our own new beginnings in God's plan for our lives.
In YOU CAN BEGIN AGAIN, bestselling author Joyce Meyer explores the beauty and infinite supply of God's love and grace. Through inspiring stories, Scriptural principles, and her classic practical, life-application approach, Joyce powerfully demonstrates that God isn't done with you yet.

If you're stuck in a rut, disappointed by an outcome, hurting from a wound, failing in an endeavor, struggling in a relationship, or unsure about the future. . .don't give up. Don't give up on yourself, and don't give up on the God Who loves you and offers you a new beginning today.





Saved Without A Doubt: Being Sure of Your Salvation

John MacArthur, Jr.
For over 30 years, trusted pastor and teacher John MacArthur has delivered practical, Biblical insights for helping Christians grow in their own journey of faith. Now the very best of John MacArthur's Christian living titles have been updated to feature a fresh look and study guides for both personal and group reflection.

Am I really saved? Am I going to heaven? How can I know for sure? Every believer has wrestled with these questions at some point in their journey. Saved Without a Doubt examines Scripture to uncover the truth of salvation, while addressing tough questions that can hinder our faith. Readers will develop a Bible-based theology of salvation and be encouraged to securely rest in their personal relationship with Christ.

Lost and Found: Finding Hope in the Detours of Life

Sarah Jakes
Don't let your past keep you from a full future.

Like every girl, Sarah Jakes dreamed of a life full of love, laughter, and happy endings. But her dreams changed dramatically when she became pregnant at age thirteen, a reality only compounded by the fact that her father, Bishop T.D. Jakes, was one of the most influential megachurch pastors in the nation. As a teen mom and a high-profile preacher's kid, her road was lonely. She was shunned at school, gossiped about at church. And a few years later, when a fairy-tale marriage ended in a spiral of hurt and rejection, she could have let her pain dictate her future.
Instead, she found herself surrounded by a God she'd given up on, crashing headlong with Him into a destiny she'd never dreamed of. Sarah's captivating story, unflinchingly honest and deeply vulnerable, is a vivid reminder that God can turn even the deepest pain into His perfection.
More than a memoir, Lost and Found offers hope and encouragement. Perhaps you, like Sarah, find yourself wandering the detours of life. Regardless of how lost you feel, you, too, can be found.

Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God

Francis Chan
Revised & Updated Edition! God is love.  Crazy, relentless, all-powerful love.  Have you ever wondered if we're missing it?

It's crazy, if you think about it. The God of the universe—the Creator of nitrogen and pine needles, galaxies and E-minor—loves us with a radical, unconditional, self-sacrificing love. And what is our typical response? We go to church, sing songs, and try not to cuss. Whether you've verbalized it yet or not, we all know something's wrong.

Does something deep inside your heart long to break free from the status quo? Are you hungry for an authentic faith that addresses the problems of our world with tangible, even radical, solutions? God is calling you to a passionate love relationship with Himself. Because the answer to religious complacency isn't working harder at a list of do's and don'ts—it's falling in love with God. And once you encounter His love, as Francis describes it, you will never be the same. Because when you're wildly in love with someone, it changes everything.

Learn more about Crazy Love at www.crazylovebook.com.
 

Old Story New: Ten-Minute Devotions to Draw Your Family to God

Marty Machowski
Easy-to-Use Devotional Helps Parents Share the Living Gospel Story!

Filled with adventure, suspense, drama, and mystery, the gospel story easily captures the attention of children. Even better, the gospel story gives life. We are saved and our children are saved as we review the story of the gospel. So why do so many well-intentioned parents give up on family devotions—deciding that reading the Bible as a family must only be for “super parents.” The truth is that there are no super parents. We all struggle, and we all need help to stay on course. Old Story New makes it easy for parents to stay on the life-giving course of sharing the gospel with their family.

The second volume in Marty Machowski’s family devotional series, Old Story New continues the gospel story that started in Long Story Short. Using the same effective ten-minute a day structure, it walks children through the great truths of the Christian faith in the New Testament. Through 78 New Testament stories, Old Story New does the hard work for parents and caregivers. Simple discussion questions (and answers!!) for each day’s devotion help children understand and remember Jesus’ life, death, resurrection, and the birth of the Christian church. Old Story New is a family devotional program designed to explain God’s plan of salvation through the New Testament and is suitable for children from preschool through high school.

The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven: A Remarkable Account of Miracles, Angels, and Life beyond This World

Kevin Malarkey
In 2004, Kevin Malarkey and his six-year-old son, Alex, suffered an horrific car accident. The impact from the crash paralyzed Alex—and medically speaking, it was unlikely that he could survive. “I think Alex has gone to be with Jesus,” a friend told the stricken dad. But two months later, Alex awoke from a coma with an incredible story to share. Of events at the accident scene and in the hospital while he was unconscious. Of the angels that took him through the gates of heaven itself. Of the unearthly music that sounded just terrible to a six-year-old. And, most amazing of all . . . Of meeting and talking to Jesus. The Boy Who Came Back from Heaven is the true story of an ordinary boy’s most extraordinary journey. As you see heaven and earth through Alex’s eyes, you’ll come away with new insights on miracles, life beyond this world, and the power of a father’s love.

How to Study the Bible

Robert M. West
This brand-new guide provides a brief, concise overview of personal Bible study for the layperson. Long-time Bible teacher Robert West gives insight into the types, tools, and techniques of personal study, offering both practical guidance and encouragement to pursue the command of 2 Timothy 2:15 ("Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth"). Covering topics such as the inductive method, word studies, commentaries, dictionaries, and concordances, How to Study the Bible also emphasizes the personal benefits of private Bible time.

The Cross of Jesus: What His Words from Calvary Mean for Us

Warren W. Wiersbe
Trusted author Warren W. Wiersbe contemplates how Christ approached his death and what his words from the cross mean to us today. Intriguing for preachers and laypeople alike.

Proof of Heaven: A Neurosurgeon's Journey into the Afterlife

Eben Alexander
A scientist’s case for the afterlife…

Thousands of people have had near-death experiences, but scientists have argued that they are impossible. Dr. Eben Alexander was one of those scientists. A highly trained neurosurgeon, Alexander knew that NDEs feel real, but are simply fantasies produced by brains under extreme stress.

Then, Dr. Alexander’s own brain was attacked by a rare illness. The part of the brain that controls thought and emotion—and in essence makes us human—shut down completely. For seven days he lay in a coma. Then, as his doctors considered stopping treatment, Alexander’s eyes popped open. He had come back.

Alexander’s recovery is a medical miracle. But the real miracle of his story lies elsewhere. While his body lay in coma, Alexander journeyed beyond this world and encountered an angelic being who guided him into the deepest realms of super-physical existence. There he met, and spoke with, the Divine source of the universe itself.

Alexander’s story is not a fantasy. Before he underwent his journey, he could not reconcile his knowledge of neuroscience with any belief in heaven, God, or the soul. Today Alexander is a doctor who believes that true health can be achieved only when we realize that God and the soul are real and that death is not the end of personal existence but only a transition.

This story would be remarkable no matter who it happened to. That it happened to Dr. Alexander makes it revolutionary. No scientist or person of faith will be able to ignore it. Reading it will change your life.

Jesus in the Present Tense: The I AM Statements of Christ

Warren W. Wiersbe
In Jesus in the Present Tense, Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe explores the “I AM” statements of God—from His burning bush conversation with Moses, to His powerful reassurances to the Israelites, to Jesus’s startling claim to be the Light of the World. Many Christians find themselves mired in past regrets or future fears, but the name of God itself reminds readers that God wants them to live in the present. The more readers understand and apply God’s I AM statements from the Old and New Testaments, the more they will realize God’s peace and joy. Then they will be free to live, serve, and know God more richly in the present tense—which is just where He wants them to be.