September has seen me reach my 2018 reading goal of 52 books for the year. I’ve read some formative theology, some quality comic books, a few great biographies/memoirs, and even found a few fiction authors I’m going to get more of. Reaching this goal means I’ll be taking a break from posting what I’ve read for a while (more on that in my next post) but for now, here’s what I read in September.
Spiritual Gifts: What They Are and Why They Matter
Dr. Tom Schreiner has written an important book discussing the spiritual gifts, and whether or not those gifts have continued into today in a form that is consistent with the New Testament. His book is conversational, compassionate to those who hold a different conviction, and compelling in his unpacking of the Biblical text. A very helpful contribution to an ongoing controversy.
Read more of my thoughts here.
Even Better than Eden
I have a particular love for Biblical Theology. So when I heard of a book that traces not one, but nine wonderful themes through the pages of Scripture, I couldn’t get hold of it fast enough. I love the way that Guthrie traces from Eden to eternity so many wonderful, rich ways in which Scripture progressively reveals the ongoing activity of God the Redeemer through history. I also love how Guthrie demonstrates how these stories powerfully shape our own stories, simultaneously offering transformation and hope to all of us who see life not going as planned. This is a tremendous, applicable, easy to read resource for every Christian.
Batman (DC Universe Rebirth) volumes 3-6
After the raging success of the first two Batman issues in the DC Universe Rebirth, volume 3 had a lot to live up to with the story arcs that Tom King was clearly developing for the long-haul. And I think he delivered. The darkness that haunts both Bane and Batman due to a tragedy in childhood provides a wonderful juxtaposition of reactions; Bruce fighting the darkness in order to see the light. What Bruce is willing to endure to save one life both glorifies and humanises him at the same time. Plus, I agree that David Finch was pretty much born to draw Batman comics.
Thanks to the local library, I have also managed to sneak in volumes 4, 5, and I’m currently reading 6.
Eats, Shoots & Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation
This is my new favourite book on all things sentences and semicolons. With chapters dedicated to the comma, the full stop, the semicolon, and more; I found myself laughing, cringing, and learning on every page. This helpful resource is also peppered with amusing examples of how not to do punctuation; plus arguments for and against stylistic choices like the Oxford comma. Highly enjoyable and educational to boot.
Suffering: Gospel Hope When Life Doesn’t Make Sense
Suffering isn’t a question of if but rather a question of when. There isn’t a person among us who has not suffered, or who will not one day experience the pain of loss, the sting of betrayal, or the weakness of their physical body failing. Writing out of his own life-altering suffering,
Tripp writes, “[t]here could be no more stunning declaration packed with more practical hope than Jesus’ words, ‘I am with you always.'” Tripp’s book is a gritty, street-level reminder that the hope of redemption is not just reserved for eternity but is a real, living, present hope; rooted in the fact that God is with you, in you, and for you right here, right now. This book packs a powerful dose of gospel courage as Tripp unpacks the traps of temptation that greet every sufferer and the comforts of grace that are available for those who fear God and trust their lives to his sovereign love and grace in the midst of difficulty. Tripp provides comforting truth for everyone who has suffered and solid gospel preparation for those who haven’t.