How do we know God? I mean how do we really know God? Most of us, if we are perfectly honest with ourselves don't spend near as much time with God as we think we should. We may quietly reflect upon what a meaningful amount of time in His Word each day should look like. Perhaps how much time we need to spend in prayer. Yet, it seems as though the busyness of our lives serves as a never-ending boundary, which keeps us from achieving this goal. Why is that? Well, I am sure there are a number of reasons. Yet, the fact remains that God still wants us to know Him. How? We know Him by developing a meaningful relationship with Him. How? Mainly just as simple as developing a relationship with our fellow humans; open communication and taking the time to getting to know the true character of God by knowing and understanding what pleases Him and obeying Him. How? (You sure ask a lot of questions, don't you?). Simply by taking the time each day to study and reflect up His Word to know who He is; His character, His attributes.
Which also brings me to Daryl Aaron's delightful volume, "Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day." Don't be put off by the title. I was very pleased in my reading of this book. As I did so, I found at least two very useful purposes for this work. First of all, I can see it being put to use by those who either would like a refresher of their theology. Those who have read the tomes of rich theology and would like a refresher. Also, for those who have not had the chance to read these rich treasures, but would like to benefit from the fruits of those labors, this is the book for you. Secondly, this volume could also serve as a robust resource for a devotional study to supplement a time in God's Word each day. This book includes a brief introduction of several significant doctrines. I hesitate even to title it "introduction," because Aaron does such a marvelous job of describing these rich doctrines so concisely and clearly that you walk away with a rich understanding of the doctrine without feeling like your head is about to explode. He doesn't waste words and gets straight to the point, which is what I really appreciate about Aaron. On the other hand, even though he briefly describes these doctrines doesn't mean that you walk away with a children's rendition of theology.
No, whether you are just beginning to take the step of entering into the rich realm of theology, or if you are a veteran, I am certain that you will appreciate this small volume as I did, and that you will find a valuable resource for your devotional life or for your initial journey into getting to know God better by studying more deeply who He is and how He operates. Happy reading!
I would like to extend my gratitude to Bethany House Publishers for the free copy of the book for me to offer this unbiased, balanced review.
Here's real help! You are surely aware of the theological illiteracy of our day. Christians are often easy prey for cults because they so little know what they believe. Hand them the usual systematic theology book and they panic, or at least lay it aside quickly. Would you agree that we need more easily-digestible materials to rescue confused Christians? This book written by Daryl Aaron and published by Bethany House meets a real need.
I'll just admit it-I'm totally impressed with how well Mr. Aaron brought theology so clearly to us in this volume. I went in thinking that superficiality would drown this volume because of its daunting task to make us understand theology in a little over 200 pages, but that is not the case. This book is good, really good.
The strengths of this book include understandable definitions, information on important divisions in Christian thought, and a clear love of Christ, His Word, and the theology that springs from it. It also succeeds in communication as many things are well put. I found myself underlining something in every chapter.
The book was at it weakest when in controversy. Particularly anything that touched the Calvinism-Arminianism debate took a much more cautious approach. I suspect that was more the publishers guideline than the authors choice. Still, there is value in presenting both sides as objectively as possible and letting we readers decide for ourselves. The only big criticism I could make of this book is the lack of an index.
This book will be a real boon to younger Christians. For those of us who have most of the many works on systematic theology, this book is still a real asset. In my own studies I enjoy reading the larger works for understanding, but reading volumes like this to suggest how to teach it is helpful. I'd love for Christians everywhere to read this book.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 .
This book gives an overview of theology in a format which is quite easy to understand. The questions discussed could be very beneficial to new followers of Christ. The scriptures used for support throughout the book are explained in layman terms, which eliminate confusion. However, I would have liked more clarification for some of the topics discussed; yet, others left me with a better understanding. I particularly enjoyed reading about salvation and the significance of the Lord's Supper, some very interesting points were made. I found this book to be less complicated than some theology books that I have attempted to read. This book can serve as the groundwork for Christians who are beginning their relationship with God. Providing brief chapters on questions many have asked or will ask. Even mention of things that maybe you never thought about asking. Prompting the reader to have discussions with other believers or research the facts for themselves, especially the beliefs of the Arminians and Calvinists.
Thanks Bethany House for including this book on your list of titles to be reviewed free of charge and allowing me the opportunity to express my true opinion of this book.
Well written and easy to read. Yeah, it's taken me a bit longer than 15 minutes a day to read through this book but I like taking notes. 40 chapters, organized in the way that most systematic theology books are, but much easier to read. Personally, I really want to read the big books on systematic theology, but this book is a really good introduction and much more my speed right now. I feel like I have a good understanding of systematic theology, and while I don't know things as deeply as I'd like to, I'm comfortable with what I know for now. I am much more capable of explaining why I believe what I believe now and that's a good thing.
Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, all thoughts are my own.
This book is well organized and easy to read. It has 40 questions which Dr. Aaron answers with about 4-5 pages each. The topics range from angels to sin to baptism and so far beyond...
My husband is a pastor and has been able to use this both in sermon preparation as well as for his graduate level classes.
As far as one of the more difficult theological questions to explain, the Trinity, the explanation is clear and has explanations from the Nicene Creed as well as explanations of what some have tried to use to explain the Trinity. It's a hard concept but this explanation would be really helpful for someone who is just starting to learn about God and why Christians believe in the Trinity of God.
There is a question, What is Sin? that we have been finding useful in explaining the concept to our oldest son. The way Dr. Aaron writes is easy enough for even him to understand (he's 6) but complex enough for an adult to get "meat" out of it as well.
I received a review copy of the book from Bethany House in exchange for a review. No additional compensation has been received and I was not required to write a positive review.