Sunday, June 15, 2014

Know the Creeds and Councils {a Book Look Blogger review}

I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to things like the history of the church, or even a whole lot on theology types of issues.

It seems like I get into conversations all the time where people are throwing out words like sola scriptura or talking about TULIP (I assume that is supposed to be capitalized) and they may as well be speaking Japanese.  I have no idea what any of that means.

All of that means I'm probably not the best person to listen to when it comes to my opinion on a book called Know the Creeds and Councils.  After all, it isn't truly likely that I'd know if Justin Holcomb was completely misrepresenting the creeds or councils.

What I can tell you, however, is that as someone who does not tend to spend a lot of time trying to figure out all this jargon, I did find this book readable and understandable.

The publisher describes the book like this:
In every generation, the Christian church must interpret and restate its bedrock beliefs, answering the challenges and concerns of the day. This accessible overview walks readers through centuries of creeds, councils, catechisms, and confessions - not with a dry focus on dates and places, but with an emphasis on the living tradition of Christian belief and why it matters for our lives today. As a part of the KNOW series, Know the Creeds and Councils is designed for personal study or classroom use, but also for small groups and Sunday schools wanting to more deeply understand the foundations of the faith. Each chapter covers a key statement of faith and includes a discussion of its historical context, a simple explanation of the statement’s content and key points, reflections on contemporary and ongoing relevance, and discussion questions.

What I enjoyed about this title is that aspect of "ongoing relevance" and why does any of this matter.

I found it fairly amusing that the day after reading in chapter 3 (the Councils of Ephesus) about Arianism, I ended up hearing about it in a completely different context, and I had an idea as to what was being discussed.

The book has fairly short chapters that can mostly be read in a sitting -- starting with The Apostles' Creed (140 A.D.) and ending with a chapter on Modern Confessions (dating from the 1970s).

I wouldn't call this enjoyable reading, but it was interesting and informative.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers book review bloggers program. 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: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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