Praying in Community: Giving Voice to the Heart of Our Father

Praying in Community: Giving Voice to the Heart of Our Father

This 6 lesson series is designed to help every disciple of Christ master the art of communal prayer. So much of our culture emphasizes the private nature faith, that we have forgotten the power of praying in groups. This series has been used in my own ministry to help both the brand new Christians and the mature Christians experience the power of praying as a church Family. Each lesson is designed to last 1 1/2 hours. Unlike most group studies, this material puts an equal emphasis on teaching the mind and engaging the spirit. Each lesson teaches one of six disciplines;

  1. The Prayer of Jesus
  2. The Prayer of Brokenness
  3. The Prayer of Evangelism
  4. The Prayer of Healing
  5. The Prayer of Intercession
  6. The Prayer of Persistence
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And

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Top Theological Works By Doctrinal View

Top Theological Works By Doctrinal View

I recently listed my Top 5 Systematic Theologies, but there has been some interest in a larger list that not only lists the books, but also helps folks discern the theological background of each author. Listed below are general works in the area of theology that I use in college and graduate courses and should be a good starting place for your theological studies.

  • I have put a check-mark beside those resources that are considered most reliable and accessible within their theological tradition.
  • Where possible, I linked the title of each book to give you both a paper and a Kindle option.

General

  1. Davis, John Jefferson. Theology Primer: Resources For The Theological Student. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1981.
  2. Elwell, Walter A., ed. Evangelical Dictionary of Theology (Baker Reference Library). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker \Book House, 1984. ✔
  3. Enns, Paul. The Moody Handbook of Theology. Chicago, IL: Moody Press, 1989.
  4. Grenz, Stanley J., David Guretzki, and Cherith Fee Nordling. Pocket Dictionary of Theological Terms. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999.
  5. Grudem, Wayne, Grudem, Elliot. Christian Beliefs: Twenty Basics Every Christian Should Know. Grand Rapids, MI: Academie/Zondervan Publishing House. 2009
  6. Leith, John H., ed. Creeds of the Churches: A Reader in Christian Doctrine from the Bible to the Present. 3rd ed. Louisville, KY: John Knox Press, 1982.
  7. Lewis, Gordon R., and Bruce Demarest. Integrative Theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Academie/Zondervan Publishing House, 1987-1994. ✔
  8. Sawyer, M. James. Survivor’s Guide to Theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 2006.

Arminian AND/OR Wesleyan

  1. Arminius, James (Jacobus). The Works of James Arminius: The London Edition (3 Volumes). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker \Book House, 1986.
  2. Carter, Charles W., ed. A Contemporary Wesleyan Theology. 2 Vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Francis Asbury Press, 1983.
  3. Dunning, H. Ray. Grace, Faith, and Holiness: A Wesleyan Theology. Kansas City, MO: Beacon Hill Press, 1988.
  4. Finney, Charles G. The Works of Charles Finney, Vol 1 (15-in-1) Power From on High, Lectures on Revivals of Religion, Autobiography of Charles Finney, Revival Fire, Holiness of Christians, Systematic Theology. Amazon Digital Services, Inc. 2012
  5. Grider, J. Kenneth. A Wesleyan-Holiness Theology. Kansas City, MO: Beacon Hill Press, 1994.
  6. Miley, John. Systematic Theolgoy. 2 Vols. Hendrickson Publishing. 1998.
  7. Oden, Thomas C. Systematic Theology. 3 Vols. New York, NY: Harper & Row, 1987-1992. ✔
  8. Wiley, H. Orton. Christian Theology. 3 Vols. Kansas City, MO: Beacon Hill Press, 1960.

Baptistic

  1. Grenz, Stanley. Theology for the Community of God. Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman, 1994.
  2. Grudem, Wayne. Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1994. ✔
  3. Henry, Carl F. H. God, Revelation, and Authority. 6 Vols. Waco, TX: Word, 1976-1983. ✔

Roman Catholic

  1. Aquinas, Thomas. Summa Theologica. 5 Vols. Christian Classics. 1981. ✔

Dispensational

  1. Chafer, Lewis S. Systematic Theology. 8 vols. Dallas, Texas: Dallas Seminary Press, 1947. ✔
  2. Hodge, Charles. Systematic Theology. 3 Vols. First published in 1872. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1975. ✔
  3. Ryrie, Charles C. Basic Theology:A Popular, Systematic Guide to Understanding Biblical Truth. Wheaton, Illinois: Victor Books, 1986.
  4. Shedd, William G. T. Dogmatic Theology. 3 vols. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan, n.d.
  5. Strong, Augustus Hopkins. Systematic Theology. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: The Judson Press, 1954.

Lutheran

  1. Jenson, Robert W. Systematic Theology Vol 1: The Triune GodSystematic Theology, Vol 2: The Works of God. New York, NY: Oxford Univesity Press, 1997-1999.
  2. Thielicke, Helmut. The Evangelical Faith: The Doctrine of God and of Christ. 2 Vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1974.

Neo-Orthodox/Modern Continental

  1. Barth, Karl. Church Dogmatics (A Selection From the full 14 Volume set). Westminster John Knox Press, 1994. ✔
  2. Brunner, Emil. Dogmatics Vol 1, Dogmatics Vol. 2 & Dogmatics Vol 3. Trans. Olive Wyon (Vols. 1 and 2) and David Cairns with T. H. L. Parker (Vol. 3). Philadelphia, PA: Westminster Press, 1949-1962.
  3. Pannenberg, Wolfhart. Systematic Theology Vol 1, Systematic Theology Vol 2Systematic Theology Vol 3. Trans. Geoffrey W. Bromiley. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1991-1997.
  4. Tillich, Paul. Systematic Theology Vol. 1, Systematic Theology Vol. 2, Systematic Theology Vol. 3. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1951-1963.

Pentecostal/Charismatic

  1. Arrington, French L. Christian Doctrine: A Pentecostal Perspective Vol 1, Vol. 2, & Vol. 3.. Cleveland, TN: Pathway Press, 1992-1994.
  2. Hart, Larry D. Truth Aflame: Theology for the Church in Renewal. Rev. ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 2005.
  3. Higgins, John R., Michael L. Dusing, and Frank D. Tallman. An Introduction to Theology: A Classical Pentecostal Perspective. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co., 1993.
  4. Pearlman, Myer. Knowing the Doctrines of the Bible. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1937.
  5. Warrington, Keith. Pentecostal Theology: A Theology of Encounter. New York, NY: T & T Clark, 2008.
  6. Williams, Ernest S. Systematic Theology Vol. 1, Systematic Theology Vol. 2. Systematic Theology vol. 3. Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1953.
  7. Williams, J. Rodman. Renewal Theology: Systematic Theology from a Charismatic Perspective. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1996

Reformed

  1. Berkhof, Louis. Systematic Theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1941, 1949.
  2. Berkouwer, G. C. Studies in Dogmatics. 14 Vols. Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1952-1976.
  3. Bloesch, Donald. Essentials of Evangelical Theology. 2 Vols. San Francisco, CA: Harper and Row, 1978-1979.
  4. Calvin, John. Institutes of the Christian Religion. Signalman Publishing; 4th edition, 2008 ✔
  5. Erickson, Millard J. Christian Theology. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 1998. ✔
  6. Geisler, Norman. Systematic Theology. 4 Vols. Bethany House Publishers, 2005.✔

That is all for now. If you have suggestions for what books to add, then please leave a comment below with your suggestions and description.

Video Training for Incarnational Apologetics

Video Training for Incarnational Apologetics

There are a lot of ways to “do” apologetics, but from my perspective far too many of the books and educational programs focus on winning debates rather than winning souls for Christ. My friend Paula summarizes this concern well when she writes,

 My concern is that apologetics, which is by nature a rational sharing of information, has become for some an emotional tool of conflict creating a divide rather than reconciliation.

So what then is good apologetics?  For me, it has to be incarnational. I define it like this;

Incarnational Apologetics is not to convince others that the Church is “relevant” NOR to persuade them of the truth.

Incarnational Apologetics is our Divine-mission to remove false-shelters that keep God’s Lost children from a personal encounter with the Spirit of Jesus Christ and knowing Him as the Way, the Truth and the Life!

If you want to dig in deeper, then I encourage you to watch my series of 10 minute videos on my YouTube playlist.

Session titles include the following:

As you watch, I welcome all comments and discussion.

The Most Important Book You Will Read This Decade!!!

The Most Important Book You Will Read This Decade!!!

5_Star

Some statistics are born bad—they aren’t much good from the start because they are based on nothing more than guesses or dubious data. Other statistics mutate.

Joel Best, Sociologist

In some of the most popular books on the market, Christians are told how bad they are and how horribly they are perceived, but most of it is either distorted or flat out wrong!  That is why the book, “Christians Are Hate-Filled Hypocrites …and Other Lies You’ve Been Told” by Bradley R. E. Ph D. Wright is the most important book you will read this decade.

Some time ago, in my post “unChristian Statistics“, I brought this issue to the forefront regarding the wildly popular and wildly inaccurate book, “unChristian“. Now the author who inspired that post has written a spectacular book that will help Christians be more discerning in the statistics they chose to believe.  Bradley begins chapter 1 by explaining why the Barna Group is not as trustworthy as you think.

You may have heard the bad news about Christianity in America: The church is shrinking; Christians get divorced more than anyone else; non-Christians have a very low opinion of Christians; and on and on it goes. This disheartening news is often given to us in the form of statistics, which we seem to encounter everywhere. We find them in sermons, articles, books, and day-to-day conversation; and these numbers, based in research, seem official and trustworthy.

But there is a hitch.

Many of the statistics currently bandied about regarding the Christian faith in the United States are incomplete, inaccurate, and otherwise prone to emphasize the negative. Bad news has pushed aside the good news about the Good News.

Each of the ensuing chapters is an absolute must read for every Christian.

CHAPTER 1: Why Do We Hear So Much Bad News About Christianity?

CHAPTER 2: Is American Christianity on the Brink of Extinction?

CHAPTER 3: Are We Losing Our Young People? What Will Happen in the Future?

CHAPTER 4: Are Evangelicals All Poor, Uneducated, Southern Whites?

CHAPTER 5: Do Christians Think and Do Christian Things?

CHAPTER 6: Have Christians Gone Wild?

CHAPTER 7: Do Christians Love Others?

CHAPTER 8: What Do Non-Christians Think of Us?

CHAPTER 9: What Do We Make of It All?

Christian researchers and authors have made huge profits by playing a statistical shell game for decades, and it is about time this practice gets exposed for what it is!

 If you are tired of being duped by sensationalized and selective statistics, then you need to read, “Christians Are Hate-Filled Hypocrites …and Other Lies You’ve Been Told” by Bradley R. E. Ph D. Wright. It truly is the most important book you will read this decade. 

“Buy this book and read it carefully. Then buy one more and give it to your best friend and ask that person to do the same thing. I hope that this book goes viral because it shows that there’s a lot of good news when it comes to the condition of the church in the West.”

Scot McKnight,
Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies, North Park University

BUY IT NOW
Brad Wright is an associate professor of sociology at the University of Connecticut where he studies American Christianity. He received his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin, where he was trained in social psychology and criminology. He has authored twenty scholarly articles and two books: Christians are Hate-Filled Hypocrites… and Other Lies You’ve Been Told (2010), and Upside: Surprising Good News about the State of Our World (2011)Hypocrites won the Christianity Today Book of the Year Award for Christianity and Culture.

 

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