Sing a New Song: Worship Renewal for Adventists Today
C. Raymond Holmes, Andrews University Press, Berrien Springs, Michigan, 1984, 160pages, $8.95. Reviewed by John R. Hood, pastor, Seventh-day Adventist Church, Owensboro, Kentucky.
Here is a launching pad for worship renewal. The first of four parts puts Adventist worship in its contemporary and Biblical context. Holmes points out two foci of worship: the presence of God, and the victory of Christ; and two matching human responses: awe and faith.
Part two deals with the theological context of Adventist worship. Worship is related to the Sabbath, Christ's heavenly ministry, the second advent, and the sacraments. Holmes includes suggestions for making a baptism or communion the focus of a service instead of an add-on.
Part three deals with how worship can be made evangelistic by highlighting distinctive doctrines within the service. Part four focuses on the role of preaching in worship. Holmes strikes a healthy balance: "Any trend that increases and elaborates liturgy and decreases and de-emphasizes the sermon is dangerous and counterproductive to the church's life and mission. But by the same token the sermon is not the object of worship. The congregation gathers to celebrate the presence of God, to adore Him and praise His holy name."
Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties. Gleason L. Archer, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, 1982, 352 pages, $16.95. Writ ten to defend the standpoint of Biblical inerrancy as opposed to infallibility by showing that texts sometimes regarded as problem texts really aren't problems at all. The introduction is valuable as a brief compendium of types of errors encountered in trans mission. The body of the book makes interesting reading, although some of the arguments proffered would be acceptable only to those inclined as strongly as Mr. Archer toward belief in inerrancy. Archer goes through the Bible, dealing with each difficult text individually.
What Kids Need Most in a Dad. Tim Hansel, Fleming H. Revell, Old Tappan, New Jersey, 1984, 188 pages, $9.95. The author is accustomed to facing challenges as founder of a Christian wilderness survival school. He challenges his readers to take their responsibility as Dad seriously and suggests positive steps for supplying what kids need most.
You and Your Child's Problems. Grace H. Ketterman, M.D., Fleming H. Revell, Old Tappan, New Jersey, 1983, 352 pages, $12.95. Deals with general principles of rearing children, plus specific problems and how to handle them. Uses examples often, and could prove a useful book for parents facing problems in the family.
Managing Today's Church. Robert N. White, editor, Judson Press, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, 1981, 192 pages, $12.95. Seeks ways to apply principles of business management to management in the church. Many practical suggestions.
Reach Out: Evangelism for the Joy of It. Paul J. Foust and Richard G. Korthals, Concordia, St. Louis, 1984, 95 pages, $3.95, paper. Part of the Speaking the Gospel Series. Comparing the Christian's faith-sharing work to a boy working with his father to build a birdhouse, the authors deal with the principles of successful evangelism through enjoying working together with God.
The Great Omission. Robertson McQuilkin, Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, 1984, 102 pages, $4.95, paper. McQuilkin sees five major reasons the church is not fulfilling the Great Commission very well: We don't care that much, we don't see very well, we think there must be some other way, our prayers are peripheral, someone isn't listening. In five chapters he examines each of these problems, shows what fallacies have led to failure, and challenges the church to take the Lord's commission seriously. Two appendices round out the presentation with a "Great Commission Commitment" and a list of specific questions that individual Christians should con front in deciding to prepare to meet the mission challenge.
Beloved Alcoholic. Janet Ohlemacher, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, 1984, 94 pages, $4.95, paper. Provides helpful insights for anyone dealing with or seeking to help an alcoholic. Ohlemacher shares her own experience of growing up with an alcoholic mother. She reveals how families often hinder rather than help the alcoholic they care about, and shares a plan for helping.