Archives For Book Review

Living in the Light: Money, Sex and Power Book Cover Living in the Light: Money, Sex and Power
John Piper
The Good Book Company
May 3, 2016
144

Whether we’re rich or poor, married or single, in a position of great influence or not—all of us face temptation in the areas of money, sex and power. They are the dangerous opportunities of our time—opportunities to destroy our own souls, or to experience the true joy of using them for God’s glory. John Piper shows us that when we have the blazing glory of Christ at the center of our spiritual solar system, the planets of money, sex and power find their true and beautiful orbits.

This book is for every Christian and will help you to wake up to the all-satisfying glory of God, and discover what you were made for.

The Cross Focused Reviewers weigh in on Living in the Light: Money, Sex and Power by John Piper (The Good Book Company, 2016).

“If you have read Piper before, you know he writes very extravagantly and sometimes can be hard to read. This book is one he writes with simplicity and clarity. This is a perfect book on how a Christian should look at sex, money, and power.”
Reviewer: Chris Land
Rating: 5 Stars

“I found this to be an excellent book and one that helped me as I worked out some of my issues with money as an idol in my life. It’s one that I would easily read again for a reminder to myself about the dangers of valuing things other than God and how that plays out practically.”
Reviewer: Rebecca Ray
Rating: 5 Stars

“This book is fully saturated with the Bible and has an amazing conclusion. As with all of the books and sermons I have read from Dr. Piper I am still digesting it and getting my mind wrapped around it, three days after finishing it. This is a book I will go back to and one that I think can bless every single person who reads it.”
Reviewer: Jonathan Roberts
Rating: 5 Stars

“I would recommend this life changing book to anyone who is ready to live in the light… it will change believer’s outlook on how they live their life.”
Reviewer: Andrew Smith
Rating: 5 Stars

Living in the Light: Money, Sex, & Power is short in length but packed with Christ-saturated wisdom. This book should be required reading for every Christian.”
Reviewer: David Steele
Rating: 5 Stars

“…those who are in positions of leadership where these three areas are often a temptation would be especially blessed in reading this little volume.”
Reviewer: Marcia Wilwerding
Rating: 5 Stars

“Because of how significant these subjects are in our culture, this is a book worth checking out.”
Reviewer: Nate Claiborne
Rating: 4 Stars

“Piper continually and plainly points the reader to Christ as the cure over and over again. The great danger in these three areas is actually quite similar: we exchange the goodness of God in Christ for something that is lesser than and can never satisfy. Hopefully this short book will be used to encourage many to find their joy in Christ so that they may live in the light instead of bondage to money, sex, and power.”
Reviewer: Joey Parker
Rating: 4 Stars

“If you’re looking for a short book that applies “treasure Christ above all things” to money, sex, and power, you’ll appreciate this one!”
Reviewer: Shane Lems
Rating: 3 Stars

“I would highly recommend this book for counseling, discipleship, or just a primer on issues related to the many abuses of money, sex, and power in our society and our churches. Living In The Light is a powerful reminder of the darkness in the world around us and how we must constantly look to the Life and Light of men (John 1:4) as we strive to avoid conforming to that world.”
Reviewer: Chrys Jones
Rating: 5 Stars

“John Piper’s newest book Living in the Light: Money, Sex and Power explores with brevity and clarity how the Christian ought to respond to the issue of money, sex and power in light of the gospel. He argues that they are good things that when properly used deliver incredible benefits… Overall, I would certainly recommend this book to help cast a solid vision for these three areas for the Christian.”
Reviewer: Aaron Meservey
Rating: 4 Stars

“Another swing and home run from The Good Book Company, and another solid piece of writing from John Piper. A timely devotional for anyone wanting to live in the light or dealing with temptation from these potential stumbling blocks.f”
Reviewer: William Sipling
Rating: 4 Stars

“This short little book helpfully condenses the essential biblical teaching about money, sex, and power, so that we are not only made aware of the dangers, but also informed about the potential of using them for the glory of God.”
Reviewer: Conrade Yap
Rating: 4 Stars

“Written in Piper’s normal intellectual style, the smallness of this book makes it easier to digest. It’s divided into easy to manage sections that allow for contemplation and reflection.”
Reviewer: Cindy Cook
Rating: 3 Stars

“This is an excellent read and an important book in a day and age when the world around is on the no clue canoe when it comes to a correct system of belief in regards to money, sex, and power. As believers, we can take to heart the encouraging and insightful discussion by John Piper in this book as we assess our lives to ensure we are living to the glory of God with our finances, our leadership roles at home, work, church, or elsewhere, and how we control lustful behavior. I highly recommend this latest effort by John Piper and I encourage you to give it a read and take to heart the godly principles contained in its pages.”
Reviewer: Michael Boling
Rating: 5 Stars

“Piper’s analysis seems sound, and it is refreshing to have an approach that does not flee too quickly to labelling everything ‘idolatry’ (even though that is what it is), but dwells on the implications of that (God is neither valued nor glorified). I highly recommend this short book to Christians at all stages of their journey.”
Reviewer: Tim Campbell
Rating: 4 Stars

“This is a book that will aid us all in reordering our affections so that they are set upon the cross of Christ and the fullness of life he offers.”
Reviewer: Aaron Cerda
Rating: 5 Stars

“Piper as always points us to Christ and reminds us to keep Him at the center and find our satisfaction in Him… I highly recommend this short book of only six chapters. It would be a great book to recommend for someone who hasn’t read John Piper before.”
Reviewer: Debbie Crawford
Rating: 5 Stars

Living in the Light: Money, Sex, and Power by John Piper is a God-glorifying, idol-exposing, and heart-penetrating book that will challenge and exhort the Christian to value Christ in above all things including sex, money, and power.”
Reviewer: Theron St. John
Rating: 5 Stars

“…it is quality content. He writes enough to get us thinking about our own lives and how we should be living in the light of Christ. If we continue to keep ourselves there, we will find ourselves in a graceful position in awe of the beauty of the cross.”
Reviewer: Matthew Lloyd
Rating: 4 Stars

“New and old readers of Piper will find Living in the Light a valuable resource. I recommend it especially to new Christians trying to understand the biblical foundations for these important subjects.”
Reviewer: Zach Barnhart
Rating: 5 Stars

“There is much of value in this short read from one of our most respected theologians. Highly recommended.”
Reviewer: Bill Pence
Rating: 5 Stars

“I would highly recommend this resource to anyone struggling with placing money, sex, or power as preeminent in their lives. Which in one degree or another includes us all!…This short book would be excellent for personal or group study. What a blessing Dr. Piper is for the church!”
Reviewer: Zach Kendrick
Rating: 4 Stars

“The reason there are so many books with similar titles is because these three topics are always relevant – Piper says that he finds it strange how many Christians pursue wealth, despite all the Bible’s warnings. This book will spark helpful thoughts for those doing talks or preaching on these topics.”
Reviewer: Stephen Steele
Rating: 4 Stars

“…a clear and passionate call to live for Christ in today’s sex-crazed and money-obsessed culture. We could all do with a dose of John Piper challenging us to a more Godward focus in this day and age! I highly recommend this short book.”
Reviewer: Robert Hayton
Rating: 4 Stars

“When God is placed at the center and sex, power and money in their respective place, God is honoured and man is free to enjoy these goodness that God has given to us.”
Reviewer: Chris Ho
Rating: 4 Stars

“You’ll be challenged because Piper does not hold punches at all, whatsoever. Expect to be confronted at the roots of your heart.”
Reviewer: Louis Zinc
Rating: 5 Stars

Where to Buy:
Living in the Light is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Living in the Light: Money, Sex and Power by John Piper Buy Now:

Zeal without Burnout: Seven Keys to a Lifelong Ministry of sustainable Sacrifice Book Cover Zeal without Burnout: Seven Keys to a Lifelong Ministry of sustainable Sacrifice
Christopher Ash
The Good Book Company
March 1, 2016
112

Lots of people who are involved in Christian ministry (whether paid or unpaid) find themselves having to step back from it. They have not lost their love for Christ, or their desire to serve him. But for one reason or another, they are exhausted and simply cannot carry on.

Christopher Ash knows this experience all too well. As a pastor of a growing church, and then in his role training people for ministry, he has found himself on the edge of burnout a number of times, and has pastored many younger ministers who have reached the end of their tether.

His wisdom has been distilled into this short, accessible book, in which he reveals a neglected biblical truth and seven keys that flow from it. This practical and biblical guidance will help enthusiastic Christians gain the mindset and lifestyle to protect themselves from burnout and serve Jesus for the long term in a sustainable way.

Below, the Cross Focused Reviewers weigh in on Zeal without Burnout: Seven Keys to a Lifelong Ministry of sustainable Sacrifice by Christopher Ash (The Good Book Company, 2016).

“This book has a place in the library of every believer (especially those serving in formal ministry) as we navigate this complex 21st century world. Zeal Without Burnout is the type of book that should be read at least every few years as a spiritual burnout “check-up”, especially for those of us in positions which lend themselves to burnout.”
Reviewer: Chrys Jones
Rating: 5 Stars

“If you know a pastor going through a burnout situation, give them this book. I think some churches need to read this book so they can know their pastor is human because some of them don’t want to admit that. Anyone in ministry, especially those starting out, need to read this book.”
Reviewer: Chris Land
Rating: 5 Stars

…”a good work, one that ministers should have in their personal library and read from time to time. Those who are not in full time ministry but serve the Lord will also benefit from this book… I think this book should also be used for doctorate of ministry programs…”
Reviewer: Jim Lee
Rating: 5 Stars

“In many circles, overworking and constantly being extremely busy is seen as a positive thing – something to brag about. This book wisely points out the flaws in being overzealous to the point of breakdown, suggesting how we can have zeal without burnout.”
Reviewer: H. Marshall
Rating: 5 Stars

“I’ve found myself simplifying over the past year or so because of my personal struggles with near burnout, and this book was a welcome reminder of why the simplification for a “long term and low key” ministry opportunity and style of homeschooling are important.”
Reviewer: Rebecca Ray
Rating: 5 Stars

“…this book is worth putting on your shelf (after you’ve read it) if you’re in ministry. As the subtitle suggests, these keys are not for ministry in general, but are kind of back-end suggestions (or principles) for how your ministry and level of service can be zealous but sustainable.”
Reviewer: Nate Claiborne
Rating: 4 Stars

“The book is small and easy to read – making it an excellent book to re-read as you become discouraged in service…a great addition to any Christian’s library.”
Reviewer: Cindy Cook
Rating: 4 Stars

“The book is mercifully short. Not because it is bad or that there isn’t more to say, but because this book will help one who is either on the brink or in the midst of burnout. It gives you principles to consider for further reflection.”
Reviewer: Doug Newell
Rating: 4 Stars

“This is a wonderful reminder. Our joy must come from God and His grace, not in the successes of ministry. At 125 pages this is a book that can be read in a short period of time. I think that it would be especially encouraging to all who serve in Christian ministry.”
Reviewer: Joey Parker
Rating: 4 Stars

“I greatly enjoyed this book.”
Reviewer: William Sipling
Rating: 4 Stars

“For the pastor who does not think he needs this book, it is for you. For the one serving in ministry who thinks they can wear themselves out without considering biblical wisdom, you need to pick up a copy. Zeal without Burnout is a humbling and helpful book for all pastors and all Christians in ministry who are concerned for the health of the church and for the health of their ministries, because if the leader is not healthy, the church will follow lead.”
Reviewer: Theron St. John
Rating: 4 Stars

“I highly commend Zeal Without Burnout and anticipate a wide reading, which will lead to encouragement for many pastors and Christian leaders in the days ahead.”
Reviewer: David Steele
Rating: 4 Stars

“This book is definitely a life-saver for those of us in ministry. Service should not be too burdensome or be allowed to turn into a boring chore. Serving is a joyful endeavour that reflects the life and vitality of the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives. If we are ever in the state of burnout, most probably, we have taken our ministry way too seriously.”
Reviewer: Conrade Yap
Rating: 4 Stars

“If you are in ministry you must learn how to balance the demands of the job with rest and replenishment. This resource will help you work through that without throwing in the towel.”
Reviewer: Zach Kendrick
Rating: 5 Stars

“If internalized, this slim volume combines truths and testimonies that will safeguard the reader from burning out in his or her service to the Lord.”
Reviewer: Mike Knox
Rating: 5 Stars

“Burnout is a gradual, subtle, and dangerous result of not taking care of ourselves, and Ash hopes we will seize the day in getting the right outlook on how ministry incorporates rest and renewal. It’s a short, but very clear presentation of God’s plan for this important topic.”
Reviewer: Zach Barnhart
Rating: 5 Stars

“It is a good place to start – and words well worth heeding.”
Reviewer: Peter Butler, Jr.
Rating: 4 Stars

“If you think you are too busy for this book, then it might especially be for you!”
Reviewer: Eva Scott
Rating: 5 Stars

“Burnout is a growing problem – this little book is one way to help guard against it in ourselves and in those we care about.”
Reviewer: Stephen Steele
Rating: 4 Stars

“I cannot think of a better book on this subject. You will be encouraged & convicted about why you do what you do & who you do it for. Remember, it is ok to take a break. In fact, it might do you some good & cause you to work harder & last longer in the long run.”
Reviewer: Louis Zinc
Rating: 5 Stars

“An excellent book. I’ve read a few on burnout over the past couple of years… And honestly, I think this is the best.”
Reviewer: Alan Davey
Rating: 5 Stars

“We proudly assume that God needs our sacrifice, our gifts, or our personalities to build His kingdom. Ash graciously shatters that thinking. I found myself humbled and encouraged by this book. It stands as a needed warning against my own pride and offers a helpful balance so that I can faithfully sacrifice without foolishly rushing into burnout. This is a book to read and to share; enjoy and be blessed!”
Reviewer: Ben Franks
Rating: 5 Stars

“This will be a book I pick up time and time again, when discouragement threatens to settle in my life.”
Reviewer: Joanne Viola
Rating: 5 Stars

“The phrase “sustainable sacrifice,” is a keeper and Ash uses the introduction to explain that this isn’t heroism or martyrdom, rather this is the ability to give generously and to do so day after day after day. And for all of us who are in positions of influence, who seek to make the world a better place, I believe setting up a life that sacrifices in sustainable ways describes something we can all aspire to.”
Reviewer: Bo White
Rating: 5 Stars

Where to Buy:
Zeal Without Burnout is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Zeal Without Burnout by Christopher Ash Buy Now:

Counseling One Another: A Theology of Interpersonal Discipleship Book Cover Counseling One Another: A Theology of Interpersonal Discipleship
Paul Tautges
Shepherd Press
February 29, 2016
195

A vibrant ministry of counseling is sorely needed in the church today: a ministry in which believers in Christ demonstrate biblical love to one another within a gospel-centered, truth-driven, and grace-dispensing church environment. Solidly rooted in the belief that the Scriptures are sufficient for every soul-related struggle in life, and fully committed to the truth that the Holy Spirit is competent to accomplish the work of sanctification, this paradigm-shifting book will challenge every believer to be a part of the process of discipleship in the lives of their brothers and sisters in Christ.

Counseling One Another biblically presents, and thoroughly defends, our responsibility to work together towards God s goal to conform each of us to the image of His Son - a goal that will not be reached apart from a targeted form of biblical discipleship, most often referred to as counseling.

All Christians will find Counseling One Another useful as they make progress in the life of sanctification and as they discuss issues with their friends, children, spouses, and fellow believers, providing them with a biblical framework for life and one-another ministry in the body of Christ.

Over the next two weeks the Cross Focused Reviewers are sharing their thoughts on Counseling One Another: A Theology of Interpersonal Discipleship by Paul Tautges (Shepherd Press, 2016).

“Tautges provides a theological and practical foundation for what Biblical Counseling looks like and is.”
Reviewer: Harold Cameron
Rating: 5 Stars

“This is one of those books that I wish every Christian would read. It is succinct, well-written, easy-to-read (though convicting!), and powerful… it was so good! So I encourage you to read it for yourselves.”
Reviewer: Debi Martin
Rating: 5 Stars

“As a result of reading this book, I feel more confident in my role as a mentor to other women and youth and I feel that I will be better able to disciple others as a result of the ideas that I’ve processed in this book.”
Reviewer: Rebecca Ray
Rating: 5 Stars

“The book is very readable, full of biblical insights, and transitions smoothly from topic to topic. It will be an often used present and future reference. Recommended.”
Reviewer: Michael Taylor
Rating: 4 Stars

“Tautges goes deep and really gets to the core of discipleship. He doesn’t beat around the bush, but plainly lays out how the Word of God applies to us.”
Reviewer: Heather Hart
Rating: 4 Stars

“Tautges provides a solid theological vision for discipleship…”
Reviewer: Aaron Meservey
Rating: 4 Stars

“This book helps the lay person know how to love others well and disciple them toward Christ-likeness.”
Reviewer: Angela Parsley
Rating: 4 Stars

“I think this book is useful for giving an account of how discipleship can incorporate the one-anothers of the New Testament. As believers in the local church are better equipped to give wisdom counsel in the mundane moments of everyday life, crisis counseling might be less needed.”
Reviewer: Nate Claiborne
Rating: 3 Stars

“I think that it is a very important book on a very important topic, and one that many in our churches — pastors and lay people alike — should be reading to equip themselves to participate in biblical discipleship. I give it my wholehearted recommendation to it as a book that I will definitely be using for myself and those I lead in the very near future.”
Reviewer: Zack Ford
Rating: 5 Stars

“Tautges helps us develop into responsible Christians who take their mission of discipleship seriously and with compassion.”
Reviewer: Jill Jones
Rating: 4 Stars

“In a world full of self-help books Counseling One Another is a breath of fresh Biblical air that will surely be beneficial to all who read it.”
Reviewer: Joey Parker
Rating: 4 Stars

“Tautges does not go around in circles, he applies relevant authors and quotes as well as uses scripture as a backbone for a plan for discipleship.”
Reviewer: Krista Rodriguez
Rating: 5 Stars

“Paul Tautges shows that in order to counsel one another biblically we must be confident in the sufficiency of Scripture and live under the authority of Scripture all within the context of the local church. Counseling One Another provides the Bible basics to accomplish this aim and equip Christians to grow in sanctification but to counsel others too as well.”
Reviewer: Theron St. John
Rating: 4 Stars

“Five Stars and two thumbs way up!”
Reviewer: Ben Wilson
Rating: 5 Stars

“If you’re looking for a counseling how-to book, you’ll be disappointed, but if you’re wanting to see how counseling integrates with disciple-making, then pick up this book!”
Reviewer: Louis Zinc
Rating: 5 Stars

“Overall, the author covers the topic of “Counseling One Another” from a Christian perspective well. I appreciate all of the scriptural references highlighting the importance of Biblical counseling and how the book steps through the experience of salvation and the process of sanctification. The book also does not shy away from sensitive topics such as homosexuality and cohabitation. The book addresses issues like this from a Biblical perspective and mentors the Christian on how to address these issues during counseling.”
Reviewer: Michael Brown
Rating: 4 Stars

Counseling One Another is a helpful resource for those wishing to assist others as they seek to overcome indwelling sin…”
Reviewer: Elizabeth Hankins
Rating: 3 Stars

“It might sound cliche but I think every believer would benefit from this book. Certainly anyone involved in ministry and discipleship should read this valuable resource. I pray that this book will receive much exposure and in doing so will benefit the church for the glory of God.”
Reviewer: Cliff VanNostrand
Rating: 5 Stars

“If you’re interested in exploring in a deeper way the link between preaching and counseling and the importance of community in the life of discipleship, then this is a solid read.”
Reviewer: Bo White
Rating: 3 Stars

“This book is a very positive move in fostering biblical health and growth in the church. May her tribe grow.”
Reviewer: Peter Butler, Jr.
Rating: 4 Stars

“…convinced that the church can be and should be and must be a community of believers in relationship to the Lord and to one another and encouraging one another to love and to holiness, correcting one another, comforting one another, everyone engaged together on the goal of arriving at holiness and likeness to Jesus. It’s a great vision, and it makes for a great book.”
Reviewer: Alan Davey
Rating: 4 Stars

“I’ve read several books on counseling lately, and each one is driving home the point that the American church, by and large, is totally disconnected from itself. This is an issue that must be addressed, and this volume by Dr. Tautges is a great place to start.”
Reviewer: Joe Westbrook
Rating: 5 Stars

Where to Buy:
Counseling One Another is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Counseling One Another Buy Now: