The Healing of the Homosexual
Leanne Payne, Crossway Books, Westchester, Illinois, 1984, 48 pages, $2.95. Reviewed by J. Robert Spangle, editor, MINISTRY.
The title of this book indicates the author's attitude toward homosexual ity. She deals first with the world's current view as she perceives it, namely, (1) one's sexual preference is determined genetically, and there is essentially nothing one can do about it; one must simply accept it; or (2) homosexuality is an alternative life style that ought to be explored and enjoyed—there is nothing wrong with it; we have simply been prejudiced against it.
Payne then examines the church's attitude typified as (1) the homosexual sufferer must grin and bear his prob lem—just live with it while remaining chaste and celibate; or (2) the homo sexual lifestyle should be lovingly accepted and perhaps even blessed by the church.
The author finds that scripture views homosexuality as something to be repented of and healed: "That is what some of you were" (1 Cor. 6:11, N.I.V.). She takes the posture that there is no such thing, strictly speaking, as a homosexual or a lesbian. There are only people created in the image of God, who are cut off from some valid part of themselves. And God delights in making people whole, in affirming and blessing them.
The Decline and Fall of the Roman Church
Malachi Martin, Putnam, 1981, $14-95, reviewed by Walter R. L Scragg, president, Australasian Division of Seventh-day Adventists.
Martin, whose claim to credibility rests in part on his service to three popes as a Jesuit, leads the reader through the sorry details of two thou sand years of papal history.
The most fascinating chapters cover recent popes. He believes the power of the Papacy is still in decline, the widowhood daily confirmed by the dis array within the church. He hopes for resurgence if the Roman church can finally lay aside its political ambitions, but sees no evidence that any pope will draw back from historic aspirations.
Gordon Thomas and Max Morgan-Wilts, Doubleday, 1983, 480 pages $17.95 (also available in paper). Reviewed by Ken Wade, assistant editor, MINISTRY.
The authors have carefully researched happenings at the Vatican in recent years. Beginning with Paul VI's last years, they uncover the internal intrigues and attitudes of the popes and the people surrounding them. A most interesting sidelight is the tracing of the background of Mehmet Ali Agca, the man who shot John Paul II.
The book is interesting not only as a study of the papacy but also for its insights into the workings of any large religious or political organization. The authors' largely unbiased storytelling makes very interesting reading.
Ruth: An Expositional Commentary, Cyril J. Barber, Moody Press, Chicago, 1983, 176 pages, $7.50. A devotional commentary that would make excel lent reading for family worship.
The NASB Interlinear Greek and English New Testament, Alfred Marshall, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, 1984, 1026 pages, $19.95. Places Marshall's interlinear translation of Nestle's text beside a fine-print, but quite-readable New American Standard Bible translation. Convenient size and a quality printing job throughout.
New International Dictionary of Bibli cal Archaeology, Edward M. Blaiklock and R.K. Harrison, general editors, Zondervan, Grand Rapids, 1983, 513 pages, $24.95. Alphabetical arrangement makes this an easy-to-use sourcebook for anyone interested in the important sites and ideas pertinent to Biblical archeology. The text is in rather fine print, allowing an amazing wealth of information to be included. Illustrations are good but are not allowed to overpower the text. Excavation history is included with the physical history of the multitude of sites mentioned. Indexed full-color maps in the back are also very helpful.