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Number of Pages: 272
Vendor: David C. Cook
Publication Date: 2011
|Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)|
Erasing Hell: What God Said About Eternity, and the Things We've Made UpFrancis Chan, Preston SprinkleDavid C. Cook / 2011 / Trade Paperback$8.99 Retail:4.5 Stars Out Of 5 38 Reviews Video
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10 Questions Every Christian Must Answer: Thoughtful Responses to Strengthen Your FaithAlex McFarland, Elmer TownsB&H Academic / 2011 / Trade Paperback$9.29 Retail:
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Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask (With Answers)Mark MittelbergTyndale House / 2010 / Trade Paperback$11.99 Retail:5 Stars Out Of 5 9 Reviews Video
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Brian Jones is the senior pastor at Christ's Church of the Valley, an innovative community of faith he and his wife helped to start in the suburbs of Philadelphia. Brian is a graduate of Cincinnati Chrsitian University (B.A.), Princeton Theological Seminary (M.Div.), and has served in leadership positions in churches for over twenty years. He is the author of Second Guessing and Getting Rid of the Gorilla.
Right away, Jones sets an effective tone. He is both strong and up front in his message, but also personal and friendly. His style never comes across as superior, and he adds comedy along with deep theology. His voice isn't alone in this. Jones uses numerous references from the Bible, as well as a number of other sources from researchers and theologians like himself. The most impacting part of his book, however, comes from the countless stories of his own life. Pastor Jones offers numerous anecdotes from his personal history, not all of them flattering. His real life experiences provide context to the ideas he presents.
Jones does run into a few problems in his work. His chapters are manageable, but can seem to drag on. Ideas aren't always consistent in each part of the same chapter. On a more theological note, not everything that Pastor Jones says seems to be traditional thinking. He mentions a couple of times how a Bible verse had different meaning in the past from what it has now. Whereas he always defends his points well, some still feel a little off. He is in no way discrediting the Bible, but the interpretations he asserts may seem "different" to conservative readers.
Hell is Real (But I Hate to Admit it) is a strong message to Christians. It not only covers the topic of Hell, but evangelizing and being a stronger believer as well. The personal story of Pastor Brian Jones makes him all the more qualified to write this book. I would recommend it to those who are looking for a spiritual challenge, as well as those who doubtful about the existence of Hell. Todd Naevestad, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
ShirleyDIndiaAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5A frank bookSeptember 23, 2013ShirleyDIndiaAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5This is a frank book on a topic very few want to touch.
Ralph COwasso, OklahomaAge: 45-54Gender: male5 Stars Out Of 5Hell Is Real (But I Hate To Admit It)November 1, 2011Ralph COwasso, OklahomaAge: 45-54Gender: maleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I initially bought the book thinking it would be abouit hell. Instead, I found the book to be more about evangelism and why we do not have an "apocalyptic urgency" to share with those who are lost. I am now using the book in a 4-week study in my small group at church. More importantly, I have gained a renewed energy to share the truth with others that (1) Hell is indeed very real, and (2) Jesus died for all of us so that we don't have to spend eternity there.
Bob HaytonSt. Paul, MNAge: 25-34Gender: male4 Stars Out Of 5Humorous & light-hearted but serious & challengingOctober 25, 2011Bob HaytonSt. Paul, MNAge: 25-34Gender: maleIn the wake of Rob Bell's controversial book "Love Wins", a plethora of books have appeared clamoring to answer the question "Does Hell exist?" Most of these books take us back to the Bible and answer the question in the affirmative. A new book from Brian Jones is no exception. What is different about his book, however, is apparent from its title: "Hell is Real (But I Hate to Admit It)". Jones uses a healthy dose of humor and personal candor as he tackles this ever-troubling topic.
Jones shares his story of secretly disbelieving in Hell for his first four years as a pastor. When he realized his error and confessed his secret sin, he was met with bewilderment. Why confess a doctrinal shortcoming? "Pastor, we were worried there was something more serious going on!" was how many took his news. This is indicative of the sad state of affairs in the church today and part of the reason Jones has given us this book.
His book is written in a simple, straightforward style. He explains the Bible's teaching on Hell, but more than that, he gets into the question of why it is that he and so many others wanted to believe there isn't a Hell. He then finishes the book with a call for "apocalyptic urgency" and a straightforward witness to the lost around us.
He doesn't dismiss social concerns but calls the church to be more forthright in its evangelistic fervor. By the end of the book you aren't surprised to learn that he was fired from the Princeton Theological Seminary bookstore for being too evangelistic. Jones has a passion for Jesus Christ, and it shows!
This book is accessible and at times humorous. And more importantly, it won't steer you wrong. It might just spur you on toward a more serious view of evangelism. If we really do believe there is a Hell, shouldn't that belief burden us all with "apocalyptic urgency"? Brian Jones thinks it should, and I have to agree. Read this book and be challenged. You won't regret it.
Disclaimer: This book was provided by David C. Cook publishing. I was under no obligation to offer a favorable review.
onedesertroseSt. Paul, MNAge: 55-65Gender: female4 Stars Out Of 5Challenge Your BeliefsOctober 4, 2011onedesertroseSt. Paul, MNAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 3Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4Once a month, Brian would take a spiritual retreat and go off to a monastery to pray, journal, walk in the woods, and then leave late in the afternoon. One day he received a spiritual revelation at the monastery. God connected with him and impressed on him that his life as a pastor was a charade, as he wasn't preaching the whole Bible, particularly about Hell. To challenge God's words about Hell, like "Russian roulette," he opened his Bible randomly to see if what God was saying was true. To his surprise, everything he opened up to related to Hell. This led to conviction, repentance, and the writing of this book.
It seems fair to say that at least one time in many of our lives, we thought of God as a loving God who wouldn't punish anyone in hell. However, we fail to acknowledge that He is also a holy God of justice and punishes unrepentant sinners with eternal death. He cannot allow sin to enter His holy presence. Even mankind wants justice when someone has committed a crime against them. Where do we get this sense of justice?
Brian Jones, in his book, Hell is Real (But I Hate to Admit It), starts out with six Ã¢â¬Ëlogical' reasons why he didn't believe in hell. I am sure many of us can resonate with his objections.
Brian challenges us, based on the teachings of Jesus, to witness as though people's' eternal lives depended on it, because it does! He examines reasons why Christians avoid talking about Hell. His book is also a compilation of how-not-to and how-to methods of reaching those who don't trust and believe in Jesus. Most of the presentations are based on his own experiences. The subject headings help ground you in his style of writing.
Initially I felt the author dwelt too heavily on just avoiding hell. But as he progresses in the book, he balances out the urgency of bringing people to the Lord because He wants us to live with Him eternally in relationship. So if you seem to get bogged down part way through, keep going to the end of his book. You'll be glad you did!
What Brian doesn't mention is that eternal fire was initially prepared for the devil and his angels. But in Mathew 25:41, we see that He does send those who are accursed to eternal fire also. A sobering thought-one to spur you on to reach people for Jesus! So don't fall for today's media controversy and ideas that Hell isn't real. Peoples' lives depend on it!
Many people have heard John 14:6, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but through Me." There's another powerful Scripture that deals with Jesus in Acts 4:12, "And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved."
This book was provided by Audra Jennings of The B&B Media Group, Inc., in exchange for my honest review. No monetary compensation was exchanged.
Carlisle Lloyd5 Stars Out Of 5Excellent viewOctober 3, 2011Carlisle LloydQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5This book really gives an excellent explanation of how and how to respond when dealing with those who seek answers regarding hell. Brian Jones clears up some misconceptions. A great read!