Hip and Thigh: Smiting Theological Philistines with a Great Slaughter. Judges 15:8

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Books I Heard and Read in 2010

My annual end of year list highlighting the main books I read this year. 

Audio Books:

I did three:

Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of MeaningJonah Goldberg

Jonah Goldberg’s historical narrative providing the background to progressive liberalism.  It was an educational listen for me.  I thoroughly enjoyed hearing about the rise in popularity of Mussolini among western elites (what is it with east and west coast liberals and their fascination with crazy dictators?), and the story of Woodrow Wilson’s progressive administration and how Obama’s mirrors it. 

The Infidel DelusionSteve Hays and crew

I am currently about 3/4 of the way through this book listening to it on my text to speech reader.  It is a collaboration of Triabloggers Steve Hays, Jason Engwer, Patrick Chan, and Paul Manata.   A bit heavy at times for the layman, but the guys do a good job addressing the key arguments offered by the internet atheist propagandists the average church-goer is going to encounter out in the work place or on the community college. 

Short Stories of H.P. Lovecraft Read by Wayne June

I am not a fan at all of the horror genre, and because of that dislike, I know really next to nothing about H.P. Lovecraft except that he supposedly influenced such horror writers as Stephen King and Clive Barker.   So when I saw occasional pop-culture, geek references to the Cthulhu, I was intrigued as to what that was all about.  I went to our county library and came across a collection of Lovecraft’s stories read by a voice talent narrator named Wayne June.  The stories I heard were not what I expected.  They were obviously weird, sci-fi like stories, but not the grossed out, gory stuff I thought I was going to get.  Plus, the narrator, Wayne June, did a superb job reading them.  He has a tremendous voice he uses to not only read the story, but to give life to the characters.  The stories are worth hearing just to listen to June talk.


Normal Books:

Arguing With Idiots – Glenn Beck

I am about half way through this book.  I don’t necessarily care for Beck.  I appreciate his poking at liberals in the same way I have appreciated Rush Limbaugh’s poking, but honestly, I get tired of Beck’s religious references as if he, a Mormon, is a genuine, evangelical Christian.  I had a volunteer give me this book as a present, and I have to say I have loved reading it.  I like the points he makes, the history he brings to the topics covered in the book, and the cartoon illustrations he provides to demonstrate liberal idiocy are a riot. 

For the Glory of God: How Monotheism led to Reformations, Science, Witch-hunts, and The End of Slavery – Rodney Stark

I came across this book in the footnotes of an article I read this past year.  I was engaged with a gang of theistic evolutionists over at the GTY blog and the timing of me discovering Stark’s book couldn’t had been better.  I checked it out of the library and read the big section on religion and science.  It was so well done I immediately purchased the book off Amazon.  The subtitle provides the subjects he covers.  With each one he dismantles many anti-Christian urban legends such as Galileo contradicted the Bible and so was punished and Christians burned millions of innocent women in witch-hunts. 

Inventing the Flat Earth: Columbus and Modern Histories – Jeffrey Burton Russell

I found this book around the same time I found Stark’s.  A friend recommended I get it after I got tangled up on my blog with a crusty atheist insistent that the Bible teaches a flat earth.  Russell’s work is short, but packed with good information about the flat earth myth we have been taught in school. 

The Greatness of the Kingdom – Alva McClain

I picked this up in an used book store to add to my material on eschatology.  McClain’s study of the Kingdom of God throughout Scripture is a tour de force.  First he outlines a theology for the Kingdom, but then he covers the biblical teaching on the Kingdom from Genesis all the way to Revelation.  Along the way he deals with problem passages like Ezekiel 40-48, as well as special passages like Daniel’s 70 Weeks.  Amillennialists will dislike that McClain is a Dispensationalist, but my Reformed Covenant friends must deal with his argumentation if they are seriously going to take on Dispensationalism as an errant, theological system.

Creation, Fall, Restoration: A Biblical Theology of Creation – Andrew Kulikovsky

This book provides a basic, yet thorough, exegetical and theological study of creation, man’s fall into sin, and then God’s restoration in the work of Christ on the Cross and at His Second Coming.  The biggest portion of the book deals primarily with creation and the Genesis record.  The author begins with a background to how origin science moved from being God centered, grounded in the biblical text, to being naturalistic and hostile to Scripture.  He then spends the majority of his book covering the historicity of Genesis and interacting with errant old earth interpretations of the text.  The latter third of the book provides a study on how Christ brings humanity’s redemption and restoration with God.  The last couple of chapters outlines eschatological themes with the author being some what vague as to his overall eschatology.  I was a bit let down on the eschatology and I was left wanting more.  Yet in spite of that dissatisfaction, the best part of the book is his study of creation.  It is probably one of the most thorough defenses of biblical, young earth creationism I have read in some time. 

Earth’s Catastrophic Past Vols. 1 & 2 – Andrew Snelling

I have to confess I read the first volume, but only portions of the second.  Snelling’s massive study on flood geology is something of an up-date to Whitcomb and Morris’s The Genesis Flood.  Snelling spends 3/4 of the first volume going over the Genesis record of creation and the flood narrative.  He provides an overview of the various flood interpretations by the standard old earth, uniformitarian creationists, and then explains why they are wrong.  He then gives the proper way to read the Genesis flood narrative and once he establishes the truthfulness of a global, Noahic flood some 5,000 yeas ago, he spends the rest of volume one, and then volume two, providing the history of geology as science and building a catastrophic flood model from the geological evidence. 

The Greatest Hoax on Earth: Refuting Dawkins on Evolution – Jonathan Sarfati

Sarfati provides a chapter-by-chapter review and response to Richard Dawkins’s work, The Greatest Show on Earth.  The book is obviously meant as a polemic against Darwinian evolution, but at the same time Sarfati engages the evolutionary arguments put forth by Dawkins, he gives the reader a creationist response to the same evidence.  The book is a decent introduction to the creation-evolution debate.

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Blogger College Jay said...

And now I have some things to put on my reading list! Thanks!

10:39 AM, January 01, 2011  
Blogger DJP said...

So, do you like Snelling?

6:38 AM, January 02, 2011  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

I liked Snelling. The man is to be commended for putting together such a tremendous study on a subject that is grossly maligned by the majority of geologists, both secular and even "evangelical." His work is a good up-date to Morris and Whitcomb's Genesis Flood book. The first volume is probably one of the better studies and defenses for a global flood I have read. If I were preaching through Genesis, I would pull heavily from his material.

The second volume I glanced over, but I never really dug deep to read. Simply because when he got to the actual nut and bolts of geology, I was over my head and it wasn't "soul" stirring. I mean, I am currently reading a commentary on Zechariah and it is stirring my soul. I want to preach through that book now.

That is not to say I will never benefit from Snelling's work. I figure if I were to be in an apologetic discussion on this subject, which could be a real possibility in the years to come, his books will come in handy.

4:33 PM, January 02, 2011  
Blogger Fred Butler said...

By the way, I got Snelling's 2-volume set on a discounted deal. I think I paid almost half off what they normally go for. If a person is on a limited budget for books, unless he really, really, has an interest in flood geology, he could probably wait to pick them up.

4:38 PM, January 02, 2011  

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