God Among Sages: Why Jesus Is Not Just Another Religious Leader, by Kenneth Richard Samples (M.A. ’89), Baker Books, January 2017. Was Jesus just a spiritual leader, like Buddha, Krishna, Confucius and Muhammad? Or is he something more — something else entirely? Apologist Ken Samples offers readers a biblical and historical portrait of Jesus, grounded in the claims Jesus makes about himself. Samples then compares and contrasts Jesus with other major religious figures, using eight relevant categories of evaluation. He helps readers understand the competing philosophies of religious pluralism, inclusivism and exclusivism. The result is a clearer understanding of what sets Jesus apart as not simply a teacher to follow but God himself, worthy of our full allegiance and worship.
Marking the Church: Essays in Ecclesiology, edited by Greg Peters (associate professor and director of faculty advancement, Torrey Honors Institute) and Matt Jenson (associate professor, Torrey Honors Institute), Pickwick Publications, December 2016. More than one person has joked that evangelical believers do not have an ecclesiology. In one sense, that is absurd: Evangelical churches are some of the fastest-growing, most vibrant churches in the world. But there is a case to be made that the evangelical devotion to the mission of the church has left evangelicals with little time to reflect on the church itself. This collection of essays explores the nature of the church in an evangelical context, asking after the way in which it is one, holy, catholic and apostolic.
Professional Guidelines for Christian English Teachers: How to be a Teacher with Convictions While Respecting Those of Your Students, by Kitty Barnhouse Purgason (professor of applied linguistics and TESOL), William Carey Library, October 2016. This handbook is for people in the field of English language teaching who are looking for practical ways to be both committed followers of Jesus and ethical TESOL professionals. What do such teachers actually do in the classroom? What materials do they use? How can they set a high bar for ethical teaching? This book grew out of Purgason’s experience as a Christian seeking to follow the Great Commandment and Great Commission, as a practitioner with a deep concern for excellence and as a teacher trainer with experience in many parts of the world.
The Apostolic Fathers: A Narrative Introduction, by Kenneth Berding (professor of New Testament and early Christianity), Wipf and Stock, May 2017. Who were the Apostolic Fathers? What did they care about? Why did they write what they wrote? This engaging introduction to the church Apostolic Fathers imagines what it would be like to ask Polycarp about the documents that were composed during his lifetime. Situated during the final week of Polycarp's life, these fictional dialogues will introduce you to the earliest Christian documents after the time of the apostles. You will come to know Clement, Ignatius, Hermas, Papias and others. Freshly translated excerpts from the writings themselves are included after each chapter.
The Myth of Equality: Uncovering the Roots of Injustice and Privilege, by Ken Wytsma (’01, M.A. ’04), InterVarsity Press, May 2017. Is privilege real or imagined? It is clear that issues of race and equality have come to the forefront in our nation’s consciousness. But it is not easy to unpack the origins of these tensions, and perhaps we wonder whether any of these issues really has anything to do with us. In this timely, insightful book, Wytsma, founder of the Justice Conference, unpacks what we need to know to be grounded in conversations about today's race-related issues. And he helps us come to a deeper understanding both of the origins of these issues and of the reconciling role we are called to play as ministers of the gospel.
Habits of the Heart: 365 Daily Exercise for Living Like Jesus, by Katherine (Beers, ’08, M.A. ’12) Butler, Tyndale House, September 2017. Are you “out of shape” spiritually? Do you long for a life that is fully and deeply engaged with the Creator? Real change happens only when we train ourselves to be in the habit of exercising our hearts in the practice of godliness. The Bible says that training the body is of some value, but the most important thing we can do is to train our spirit. Habits of the Heart will help you develop practices that draw you into a deeper and lasting relationship with God. Each day of the year, this simple guide will help you focus on one essential aspect of your walk with God and show you how to make it a habit.