Monthly Archives: February 2013

Safe?: How We Can Be Sure of God’s Love by Frank Retief

Safe?: How we can be sure of God’s love by Frank RetiefBecoming a Christian is meant to produce peace and joy, yet this is not always the experience of the believer. Why not? Most often it is because we have failed to grasp the true meaning and extent of the gospel message.

This book is designed to help those people who have truly received Christ as their Saviour but are confused by the feeling that nothing seems to have changed. Are you one of them? Most people gauge the reality of their conversion by the way they feel. For some people becoming a Christian is such a momentous event that the sense of being pardoned and inwardly renewed often results in joy and relief and a sense of belonging. But this emotional adrenaline has to solidify into a rugged understanding of the gospel or it will leave the new believer bewildered when the feelings wane. On the other hand some people become Christians in a progressive and unemotional way and they may sometimes wonder if anything real and lasting has happened to them.

Many Christians are ignorant about how they are supposed to feel from day to day. The ordinary burdens of living in a fallen and sinful world descend on them and they no longer feel good or victorious. Instead they often feel guilty and confused. There are sometimes huge emotional expectations about the moment of commitment to Christ. When these don’t materialise, some people commence a fruitless search for spiritual thrills. This can lead to perpetual disillusionment or even weird and wrong teaching. Such people often end up in the arms of strange and fanatical groups on the periphery of Christianity.

I urge you to avoid that. If you are feeling spiritually dry and barren, let me assure you that the answer lies primarily in understanding the enormousness of what happens to those who turn to Christ. I do not mean to suggest that feelings are not important or that nothing should be experienced in the realm of the emotions. Far from it! I merely want to point out that feelings are the result of other input into our lives – especially our minds. To use computer jargon, if the input is wrong, the print-out will be wrong. But if the input is right, the results will be right.

Feelings are so easily manipulated and changed. We are fallen people and part of the effect of our fallenness and imperfection is seen in the changeability of our feelings and the ease with which they can play havoc with us.

We need to make sure that our information is correct, that we understand the privileges of believing the gospel. If we understand these privileges, then I say unhesitatingly that, regardless of the ups and downs of life, we can and should have blessed assurance.

*Adapted from Frank Retief’s introduction to Safe?: How We Can Be Sure of God’s Love, p. 7-9.

Frank RetiefAbout the Author:
Frank Retief is the retired Bishop of the church of England in South Africa and is an author, expositor and international conference speaker.

Praise for Safe?: How We Can Be Sure of God’s Love:

“I can think of nothing better to give to new converts – or to be read by believers who are not crystal clear about their eternal security.”
John Blanchard ~ Internationally known Christian preacher, teacher, apologist and author

“Enquirers and believers alike will find in Frank Retief’s compelling style and luminous stories a readily-constructible platform for a credible Christian world-view.”
Richard Bewes ~ OBE, Author & retired rector of All Souls Church, Langham Place, London

Where to Buy:
Safe?: How We Can Be Sure of God’s Love by Frank Retief 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:

Safe?: How we can be sure of God’s love by Frank Retief Buy Now:

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Christian Focus Across the Web – February 22, 2013

Dave Jenkins Reviews Puritan Portraits – Head on over to Servants Of Grace and take a look at Dave Jenkins’ recent review of Puritan Portraits by J. I. Packer. Here’s a bit of what Dave had to say:

“My rule is whenever Dr. Packer writes a book, I know that I’m going to read it, and this tradition continues with this book (and the others that have republished). Whether you’re new to reading the Puritans or you’ve read them for a long time, I recommend you pick up Puritan Portraits and the remainder of the books listed in this book to learn how deeply rich theology can be combined with deep spirituality and trust in the grace of God.”

You can see Dave’s review in its entirety at ServantsOfGrace.org.

Puritan Portraits by J. I. Packer
Avaiable for review: To Walk or Stay by Lara Williams – Here’s an opportunity to read Lara Williams’ new book To Walk or Stay before you can even buy it! Lara’s book is currently available in the UK and will be releasing in the US next month. In the book Lara gives tender guidance to any woman walking the unexpected paths of betrayal. But even more than that, she testifies of the victorious life in Christ available to everyone, regardless of any shattered hopes or suffocating fears.Reserve your e-book review copy today:  LINK To Walk Or Stay by Lara Williams
February Book Giveaways – Visit our Christian Focus Booknotes and Christian Focus 4 Kids Blogs and enter for a chance to win Calvin and the Biblical Languages by John Currid and God’s Special Tent by Jean Stapleton. Both giveaways run through February 28th. Calvin-Biblical-Languages

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February Book Giveaway – Calvin and the Biblical Languages by John Currid

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**If you are unable to see the contest widget in your RSS Reader or e-mail client, clck here to view this post on the Christian Focus Booknotes Blog.

Terms and Conditions:
The giveaway is limited to residents of the continental United States and the United Kingdom.

Praise for Calvin and the Biblical Languages:

“If your language skills have become rusty and you doubt their value a few new books can help. Calvin And the Biblical Languages, by John Currid (Christian Focus; pb.), provides a good reminder of the importance and usefulness of the biblical languages for pastoral ministry and church life.”
-Preaching.com, website Bible and Bible Reference Survey, Ray Van neste

“I thoroughly recommend to all ministers. Those who have scoffed at the idea of learning Hebrew and Greek or who have jettisoned their studies once out of their college, will be powerfully challenged about their attitude to such important study”
-Rev. Gordon Ferguson, British Church Newspaper

Calvin-Biblical-LanguagesAbout the Book:
The church today is built on the Reformation’s linguistic heritage yet is in danger of losing that strong foundation. Many seminaries no longer require that their students learn the Biblical languages for their divinity degrees – some do not even teach them! Yet these are the basic tools of any study of the Bible, and if we don’t teach the Bible, then what is the church teaching?

If we need encouragement as to what can happen to our sermons and Bible study when we develop a knowledge of the languages that they are written in then Calvin is an excellent encourager. John Currid shows us how Calvin used a knowledge of the Biblical languages to provide richness, depth and accuracy to his understanding of scripture – and his exposition of it.

If you want to develop a deeper ability to understand and explain God’s Word then let the two John’s guide you!

John CurridAbout the Author:
John Currid is Carl McMurray Professor of Old Testament at Reformed Theological Seminary, Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Available for Review – To Walk or Stay by Lara Williams

Join us March 18-22, 2013 for the To Walk or Stay Ebook Review Blog Tour!

To Walk Or Stay by Lara WilliamsAbout the Book:
Her marriage slowly deteriorated behind the facade of a happy, Christian home. After six years together, with three young children, Lara discovered the devastating reality of her husband’s marital betrayal.Lara gives tender guidance to any woman walking the unexpected paths of betrayal. But even more than that, she testifies of the victorious life in Christ available to everyone, regardless of any shattered hopes or suffocating fears.

Lara WilliamsAbout the Author:
Lara Williams lives with her husband and three children in Greensboro, North Carolina. She holds a degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master of Divinity degree from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Her blog “To Overflowing” (tooverflowing.com) and website www.LaraWilliams.org encourage women to discover a wildly vibrant faith.

Blog Tour Details:
The To Walk or Stay Ebook Review Blog Tour will run March 18-22, 2013. 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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Come Visit Us at the Ligonier 2013 National Conference – February 21-23

Ligonier 2013 National Conference

We hope to see you in Orlando this week for the Ligonier 2013 National Conference. This year’s conference theme is No Compromise: Standing for the Truth of God’s Word. Be sure to stop by and say hi to Jonathan and Donnie at our table in the conference book area. Here are a few of the titles you’ll want to pick up at special conference-only prices:

Unseen Realities: Heaven, Hell, Angels and DemonsCreation And ChangeThe Dawkins Letters, Revised Edition by David Robertson Fear Not!Big Book of Questions & Answers About Jesus by Sinclair B. Ferguson Big Book of Questions & Answers:  A Family Devotional Guide to the Christian Faith by Sinclair B. Ferguson

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E-Books on Sale Through 2/25/2013

The following e-books are on sale through February 25th:

The Wages of Spin Dealing With Depression Fear Not!
On Sale: $2.99/£1.99 On Sale: $2.99/£1.99 On Sale: $2.99/£1.99
Kindle - US
Kindle - UK
Nook
iBooks
Kindle - US
Kindle - UK
Nook
iBooks
Kindle - US
Kindle - UK
Nook
iBooks

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Christian Focus Across the Web – February 15, 2013

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

Radical Dating: When God takes over your love life by Diane Montgomery, Gabrielle Pickle, & Sarah BubarTwo New Radical Dating Interviews – Christian Focus authors Gabrielle Pickle & Sarah Bubar have been busy promoting their book Radical Dating this week with interviews on both American Family Radio and Faith Radio Mornings. Both interviews are now available to stream or download:

Pastoring the PastorDavid Murray Reviews Pastoring the Pastor

“not just for pastors, it would also be a helpful read for every Christian, giving you insight to what ministry is like behind-the-scenes and how your actions and words can impact pastors and their families for good and evil.”

Read David’s full review at headhearthand.org/blog

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Hear Gabrielle Pickle & Sarah Bubar Live on American Family Radio – 2/14/2013 @ 10:10 AM CT

Diane, Sarah, & GabrielleChristian Focus authors Gabrielle Pickle & Sarah Bubar will be interviewed live Thursday February 14, 2013 at 10:10 AM CT on American Family Radio to discuss their book Radical Dating: When God Takes Over Your Love Life. You can tune in to the live broadcast at www.afa.net/radio.

About the Book:
Radical Dating is a fun, comprehensive, Bible-based guide offering candid, relatable insight on guys, dating, singleness, purity, and true love. Most importantly, the authors point readers to the ultimate source of true love, Jesus Christ Himself and to deepen that relationship above all others.

About the Authors:
Sarah Bubar, Gabrielle Pickle and Diane Montgomery – are best friends, study buddies, bridesmaids, and now ministry partners. They started the Unlocking Femininity blog to set the truth of Christ before women and girls in ways that connect with the female heart.

Where to Buy:
Radical Dating 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:

Radical Dating: When God takes over your love life by Diane Montgomery, Gabrielle Pickle, & Sarah Bubar Buy Now:

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Hear Gabrielle Pickle & Sarah Bubar Live on Faith Radio Mornings – 2/12/2013 @ 6:40 AM CT

Diane, Sarah, & GabrielleChristian Focus authors Gabrielle Pickle & Sarah Bubar will be interviewed live Tuesday February 12, 2013 at 6:40 AM CT on Faith Radio Mornings to discuss their book Radical Dating: When God Takes Over Your Love Life. You can tune in to the live broadcast at www.faithradionet.com.

The archive is this interview is now available to stream or download: LINK

About the Book:
Radical Dating is a fun, comprehensive, Bible-based guide offering candid, relatable insight on guys, dating, singleness, purity, and true love. Most importantly, the authors point readers to the ultimate source of true love, Jesus Christ Himself and to deepen that relationship above all others.

About the Authors:
Sarah Bubar, Gabrielle Pickle and Diane Montgomery – are best friends, study buddies, bridesmaids, and now ministry partners. They started the Unlocking Femininity blog to set the truth of Christ before women and girls in ways that connect with the female heart.

Where to Buy:
Radical Dating 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:

Radical Dating: When God takes over your love life by Diane Montgomery, Gabrielle Pickle, & Sarah Bubar Buy Now:

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Christian Focus Across the Web – February 11, 2013

Christian Focus Across the Web highlights important news and blog posts related to our books.

Puritan Portraits by J. I. PackerCaleb Nelson reviews Puritan Portraits for World Magazine – We’ve been very blessed by the recent reviews we’ve received for J. I. Packer’s latest book Puritan Portraits. Here’s an excerpt from Caleb Nelson’s review that appeared last week in WorldMag.com’s Virtual Voices:

“If you need to know what repentance is and how to do it, or if you find yourself dealing with a sin that just will not go away, then Puritan Portraits has advice for you. Packer’s purpose is obvious: He not only wants readers to know about the Puritans and get a few good quotes, he also wants his readers to put down Puritan Portraits and pick up the original works of these godly men.”

Read Caleb’s full review at www.worldmag.com.

Pastoring the Pastor by Tim Cooper & Kelvin GardinerReview of Pastoring the Pastor at The Reformed Reader – Many thanks to Shane Lems for his review of Pastoring the Pastor that was posted last week on The Reformed Reader. Here’s a bit of what Sane had to say:

“If you’re a pastor who needs some solid wisdom, encouragement, and new motivation to keep proclaiming God’s whole counsel in and out of season, I highly recommend Pastoring the Pastor.”

You can read Shane’s review in its entirety at reformedreader.wordpress.com.

Desiring God 2013 Conference for Pastors Audio Now Available – The Desiring God 2013 Conference for Pastors wrapped up last Wednesday. Thanks to everyone who stopped by our tables in the conference bookstore. We’re looking forward to seeing you again next year. If you didn’t make it to the conference or want to listen to one of the messages again, the audio from all of the sessions is now available to stream or download at www.desiringgod.org.

 

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