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I have three new books that I am really enjoying at the moment. They each represent a particular area of study for me, and since they have proved to be very helpful I want to recommend them to others who may also be looking for good resources in these areas.

heretics gospel

The Gospel According to Heretics, by David E. Wilhite. (Baker, 2015, 290 pages) This book shows how the various theological conflicts (particularly concerning Christ) helped to define and clarify what the church believed. In other words, the heresies served the church by forcing her to carefully articulate what the Bible teaches. The chapters include Marcion, the Gnostics, Sabellius, Arius, and Islam (just to name a few). Wilhite works to show how the particular heresy developed and how the church answered it. It is a very helpful reference book but even more it serves to equip the church today. We know, after all, that there is nothing new under the sun.

faith aloneFaith Alone, The Doctrine of Justification, by Thomas Schriener. (Zondervan, 2015, 284 pages) Dr Schriener is thorough, clear, and charitable. And all of this comes through brightly in his biblical fidelity and pastoral tone. He takes the reader on a historical tour of Sola Fide (faith alone), then a biblical and theological tour, and finally he interacts with the contemporary challenges to Sola Fide. In the process there are helpful considerations to the imputation of Christ’s righteousness and the importance of it as it relates to the Christian life. What’s more, the author interacts with Roman Catholics, the Reformers, Owen, Baxter, Edwards, and Wesley. When I read the table of contents I was drawn into the book just to see if he could get it done! So ambitious. But, it is gold. Another reference book that is immensely devotional.

baptist foundationsBaptist Foundations, Church Government for an Anti-Institutional Age, edited by Mark Dever and Jonathan Leeman. (B&H, 2015, 397 pages) Most pastors and church leaders have been immensely helped  by 9Marks. Their books and resources fill a major ecclesiological gap in evangelicalism. Now leaders  Mark Dever and Jonathan Leeman edit a hardcover edition that is sure to make Baptists smile. It is a robust, thorough, and thoughtful compilation of articles on church polity. It is divided into five sections: congregationalism, the ordinances, church membership and discipline, elders and deacons, the church and churches. It includes articles from Tom Schreiner on the Lord’s Supper, Stephen and Kirk Wellum on the biblical and theological case for congregationalism, and Mark Dever on elders and deacons in history. These are just some of the many very helpful chapters. Although it has only recently been published I have referenced it, gifted it, and quoted it several times already.

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Erik Raymond

Erik Raymond is senior pastor of Emmaus Bible Church in Omaha, Ne. He and his wife Christie have six children. You can follow him on Twitter.

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