Monthly Archives: March 2012

New E-book Review Blog Tour – The Last Word by Wallace Benn

The Last Word by Wallace BennNext month we will be hosting an e-book review blog tour for The Last Word by Wallace Benn at the Christian Focus Booknotes blog. The blog tour will run April 23 – 27. Sign up below if you’d like to be a reviewer for this blog tour.

About the Book:
When someone respected and well known dies we consider their final words to be important and significant, even a distillation of that person’s wisdom throughout their life. The most important last words ever spoken were spoken by Jesus to the disciples who were to be his witnesses, taking the gospel to the whole world. Of course, Jesus’ teaching and example investigated here are not strictly his very last words but his meeting in the upper room was the last time he saw his disciples together before he was arrested and put to death. The wonder is that Jesus knew exactly what was going to happen and so carefully prepared his church for what was going to come. Although we are separated by two thousand years from this event, there is a real sense in which we are also in that room, listening to the saviour and able to learn so much from these last words to his disciples.

About the Author:
Wallace Benn is the Bishop of Lewes in the Church of England. Previously he was the pastor of a large Anglican Church and is in demand as a conference speaker at events such as New Word Alive and New Horizons.

Blog Tour Details:
The Last Word E-book Review Blog Tour will run April 23rd through the 27th. Participants must be willing to post a review of the book on their personal blog and at least one internet retailer of their choice such as Amazon.com.

A limited number of entries will be selected via the form below:

This blog tour is now full. Thank you for your interest.

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Christian Focus Across the Web – March 30, 2012

Christian Focus Across the Web highlights important news and blog posts related to our books. This week’s highlights are below:

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S SmithInterviews with Colin S. Smith Now Available for Download – Christian Focus author Colin S. Smith was interviewed earlier this week about his new book Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life on Connecting Faith with Neil Stavem (3/28) and the Janet Mefferd Show (3/29). If you weren’t able to catch the live interviews, you can find them here: LINK and here: LINK.

History Lives Box Set by Mindy and Brandon WithrowChurch History Books Worth Selling your Silverware For – We recently came across Danika Colley’s review of the Minday and Brandon Withrow’s History Lives series at her Thinking Kids blog. Here’s a bit of what Danika had to say:

“The Withrows do an excellent job of both covering the information and writing the stories in an engaging and interesting manner. Honestly, I think these books are wonderful reading for any adult new to Church history!”

“These are awesome. I have impeccable taste. Get shopping. (The really good news? They’re an incredibly reasonable price. You won’t even need to sell your silverware!)”

You can read Danika’s full review here: LINK.

Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. BarrickKnowing God: Scripture Memory Book 1 by N A WoychukMarch Book Giveaways – We currently have two March Book Giveaways running at our blogs. Be sure to visit the Christian Focus Booknotes blog for a chance to with William D. Barrick’s Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament. Next you can head on over to the Christian Focus 4 Kids blog for a chance to win Knowing God: Scripture Memory Book 1 by N. A. Woychuk. Both of these giveaways run through end of day April 1st.

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Hear Colin Smith on The Janet Mefferd Show – 3/29/2012 – 1 PM CT

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S SmithChristian Focus author Colin Smith will be interviewed live Thursday March 29, 2012 at 1:00 PM CT to discuss his book Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life on The Janet Mefferd Show. You can tune in to the live broadcast at www.thewordfm.com.

The archive of this broadcast can be found here:  LINK.

About the Book:
Facing an assignment equivalent to being sent to warn notorious terrorists of God’s anger with them, perhaps it was no wonder that Jonah ran away – certainly portrayed in Scripture as no “super saint”, he avoided God and His call on his life. Yet God turned the situation around as pagan sailors encountered the living God who made the land and sea and the entire population of a city realized that although they deserved to be wiped off the face of the earth, there was a God of compassion and mercy who forgave them. God’s mercy is greater than our failures and through adverse circumstances and pain, a character of Christ-like compassion is chiseled out.

About the Author:
Colin Smith serves as Senior Pastor of the Orchard Evangelical Free Church. Colin is the author of several books including Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life (Christian Focus, 2012). He can be heard daily on the Unlocking the Bible radio broadcast (unlockingthebible.org).

Where to Buy:
Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S Smith Buy Now:

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New Release – Books Ablaze …and other historical stories you’ve got to hear by Irene Howat

Books Ablaze and other historical stories you've got to hear by Irene HowatSniff sniff… am I smelling burning? No it’s not dinner – there are some bonfires in this book. Books were amongst some of the things set alight during church history. In fact flames were used to persecute Christians throughout church history. Their possessions and homes were set alight. Christians were even killed and burned for their faith. But there was one fire that didn’t happen – on the 5th of November 1605 Guy Fawkes and others decided to set fire to the Houses of Parliament in the United Kingdom. Irene Howat tells the Christian story behind this and other incidents in history. You will see how not even fire or the plans of evil men can separate Christians from the Love of God.

Irene HowatAbout the Author:
Irene Howat is an award-winning author who has many titles, for adults and children, to her name. She is married to a retired minister and they have a grown up family. She is also a talented artist and now stays in Ayrshire, Scotland. She especially enjoys letters from children and replies to all of them!

Where to Buy:
Books Ablaze: …and other historical stories you’ve got to hear is available at any good Christian Bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Books Ablaze and other historical stories you've got to hear by Irene Howat Buy Now:

A full list Irene Howats’s books published by Christian Focus Publications can be found here:  LINK.

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March Book Giveaway – Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. Barrick

Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. BarrickOur March book giveaway features Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. Barrick.

About the Book:
Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament is the latest addition to the Focus on the Bible commentary series.

About the Author:
William D. Barrick serves as Professor of Old Testament and Director of Th.D studies at The Master’s Seminary, Sun Valley, California. He is author of a number of books and written articles for a number of Journals.

How to Enter:
Participants will get a contest entry for each of the items completed below.  Please check each of the completed items on the entry form.

Terms and Conditions:

  • This contest is limited to residents of the 48 state continental United States and the UK..
  • The contest will run through end of day April 1, 2012.
  • After the contest closes, we will choose 1 winner, who will receive a copy of the book.

This giveaway is now closed. Thank you for your interest.

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New Release – Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life by Colin S. Smith

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S Smith

God spoke through Jonah and his preaching changed people’s lives. But behind this man’s celebrated ministry lay an intense private battle as the deep wells of selfish desire, love of comfort, and resentment towards God erupted repeatedly in his life.

The outline of Jonah’s story is simple. God called this man out of a settled ministry in Israel to preach in Nineveh, a city notorious for its wickedness. Jonah didn’t like the idea, so he got on a ship and sailed in the opposite direction. God intercepted the ship by sending a storm and when the crew realized that the storm had come because of Jonah, they threw him overboard.

God rescued Jonah by providing a great fish that swallowed him, swam to the shore, and then spat him up on the beach. At this point, Jonah decided he had better do what God said, so he went to Nineveh and preached the message God had given. When the people heard Jonah, they believed God, repented of their sin and were saved from immanent judgment.

You might think that a man who experienced miracles in his own life, and whose ministry was used by God to transform one of the most cities of his time, would get beyond the struggles that ‘ordinary’ Christians experience. But Jonah shows us something different. At the end of the book, after the miracle of being saved by the fish and after seeing a whole city repent, Jonah was angry, dissatisfied and out of sorts with God. Instead of rejoicing, he slumped into despair, and became convinced that his life had no further meaning or value.

By any standards Jonah lived an extraordinary life. Few have the privilege of preaching with such power that a whole city is transformed, and nobody I know has experienced God’s grace through being swallowed by a fish! But despite Jonah’s uniqueness, his story speaks to our more ordinary lives in powerful ways.

Jonah’s confession maps out our battle and gives testimony to the patience, perseverance and ultimate triumph of God’s grace in the conflicted experience of a Christian believer. Our journey with Jonah will help you to explore the dynamics of your own struggle with God. It will challenge your self-interest, and give you a fresh glimpse of God’s invincible grace.

Adapted from the introduction to Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life by Colin S. Smith (Christian Focus 2012).

Colin S. SmithAbout the Author:
Colin Smith serves as Senior Pastor of the Orchard Evangelical Free Church. Colin is the author of several books including Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life (Christian Focus, 2012). He can be heard daily on the Unlocking the Bible radio broadcast.

Praise for Jonah: Navitaging a God-Centered Life:

“Here is a pastor reading the book of Jonah and finding a preacher who wants settled ministry, not challenges; who wants to see his enemies crushed, not converted; who longs for God’s grace in his own life, but not in the lives of others; who knows how to speak God’s words with faithfulness, but who wants to see only the component of judgment worked out in reality; a preacher who is angry and who wants God to be angry too; a man who wallows in self-pity and hates it when God exposes that self-pity for the idolatrous arrogance it is. It is not difficult to see the relevance of such portraits in our own day. And what does it say of God, that he keeps working away at Jonah as he keeps working away at the Ninevites?”
-D. A. Carson ~ Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, Deerfield, Illinois

“The strength of the book is that it echoes the ministry of a prophet, speaking God’s words into a culture which resists that word.”
-David Meredith ~ Chairman of Affinity and Minister of Smithton Free Church of Scotland, Inverness

“No matter how well you think you know the story of Jonah, you will be blessed and enlightened by this book from a gifted pastor who has both a good grasp of Scripture and human nature. In these pages we see ourselves, running from God but always brought back by God’s intervention and grace. In this helpful exposition we will recognize the same providence and patience of God in our lives as Jonah experienced. Read this book and share it with a friend. ”
-Erwin Lutzer ~ Senior Pastor, Moody Church, Chicago, Illinois

Where to Buy:
Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life is available at any good Christian Bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S Smith Buy Now:

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Hear Colin Smith on KTIS Faith Radio – 3/28/2012 – 12:00 PM CT

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S SmithChristian Focus author Colin Smith will be interviewed live Wednesday March 28, 2012 at 12:00 PM CT to discuss his book Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life on KTIS Faith Radio. You can tune in to the live broadcast at www.faithradionet.com.

The archive of this broadcast can be found here:  LINK.

About the Book:
Facing an assignment equivalent to being sent to warn notorious terrorists of God’s anger with them, perhaps it was no wonder that Jonah ran away – certainly portrayed in Scripture as no “super saint”, he avoided God and His call on his life. Yet God turned the situation around as pagan sailors encountered the living God who made the land and sea and the entire population of a city realized that although they deserved to be wiped off the face of the earth, there was a God of compassion and mercy who forgave them. God’s mercy is greater than our failures and through adverse circumstances and pain, a character of Christ-like compassion is chiseled out.

About the Author:
Colin Smith serves as Senior Pastor of the Orchard Evangelical Free Church. Colin is the author of several books including Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life (Christian Focus, 2012). He can be heard daily on the Unlocking the Bible radio broadcast (unlockingthebible.org).

Where to Buy:
Jonah: Navigating a God-Centered Life is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Jonah: Navigating a God-centred by Life Colin S Smith Buy Now:

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Hear Liam Goligher on Lifeline with Kurt Goff – 3/26/2012 – 3 PM ET

Christian Focus author Liam Goligher will be interviewed live Monday March 26, 2012 at 3:00 PM ET to discuss his book Joseph: The Hidden Hand of God on Lifeline with Kurt Goff. You can tune in to the live broadcast at www.wdcxfm.com.

About the Book:
Any regular attendee at School concerts will have heard countless renditions of ‘Any dream will do’! Andrew Lloyd-Webber and Tim Rices’ musical ‘Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat’ has certainly brought awareness of Joseph’s name to contemporary society – but has it contributed to our understanding of the historical Joseph, and his role in the Bible’s big picture? Any glance at the first book of the Bible will show that, in terms of sheer space, the story of Joseph is of some considerable importance. Although no tribe is named after him, and the Messiah is not descended from him, Joseph nonetheless occupies a crucial role in the Bible’s drama of redemption. Ultimately Joseph’s story is about God’s intention to save, not just Joseph’s family, but bringing through Judah a saviour for the world. Jesus taught us that the key to unlocking the whole Bible is to see it as a book about himself. Every story whispers his name.

About the Author:
Liam Goligher is the Senior Minister of Tenth Presbyterian Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Prior to his move to the US he was Senior Minister at Duke Street Church, Richmond. He is a respected author, Bible teacher & conference speaker. He is married to Christine and they have five children and three grand-daughters.

Where to Buy:
Joseph: The Hidden Hand of God is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Buy Now:

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Christian Focus Across the Web – March 23, 2012

Christian Focus Across the Web highlights important news and blog posts related to our books. This week’s highlights are below:

Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. BarrickInterview with William D. Barrick Now Available for Download – Christian Focus author William D. Barrick was interviewed earlier this week about his new book Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament on Knowing the Truth with Kevin Boling. If you weren’t able to catch the live interview, you can find it here: LINK.

Titanic:  The Ship of Dreams by Robert PlantNew Blog Tour Open at the Christian Focus 4 Kids Blog – Next month we’re holding an e-book review blog tour for Titanic: The Ship of Dreams at the Christian Focus 4 Kids blog to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the sinking of the titanic. Registration will be open for a few more days, so head on over to the Christian Focus 4 Kids blog and sign up.

John Owen: Prince of Puritans by Andrew ThomsonReview of John Owen: Prince of Puritans (History Makers Series) – We wanted to pass along a recent review we came across for John Owen: Prince of Preaches at the  Renninger Book Reviews Blog. Here’s the recommendation from the review:

Overall, I enjoyed the book and found it to be informative. This was my first encounter with John Owen or any of his writings and I am now interested in digging a little deeper and have already begun looking for several of Mr. Owen’s books. I would gladly recommend this book.

You can read the review in its entirety here:  LINK.

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Hear William D. Barrick on Knowing the Truth with Kevin Boling – 3/22/2012 – 1 PM ET

Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. BarrickChristian Focus author William D. Barrick will be interviewed live Thursday March 22, 2012 at 1:00 PM ET to discuss his new book Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament on Knowing the Truth with Kevin Boling. You can tune in to the live broadcast at  www.ChristianTalk660.com.

The archive of this broadcast can be found here:  LINK.

About the Book:
What is the purpose of life? The preacher in Ecclesiastes, just like many today, is in search of life’s meaning. But as they look through their limited worldview all they find is “vanity, vanity”. Pure emptiness! They are in search for something which will have eternal value. To find it, we need to look beyond ourselves. This is what the preacher discovers; that man is powerless, yet God has a design and purpose for all things. He is the giver of all life. Ecclesiastes gives teaching on doctrines such as man, salvation and future judgment.

About the Author:
William D. Barrick serves as Professor of Old Testament and Director of Th.D studies at The Master’s Seminary, Sun Valley, California. He is author of a number of books and written articles for a number of Journals.

Where to Buy:
Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament is available at any good Christian bookstore. If you don’t have a Christian bookstore near you, you may want to consider purchasing a copy from one of the online book retailers listed below:

Ecclesiastes: The Philippians of the Old Testament by William D. Barrick Buy Now:

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