Monday, January 30, 2017

Review: The Chamberlain Key: Unlocking the Biblical Code That Proves the Existence of God by Timothy P. Smith with Bob Hostetler

Review: The Chamberlain Key: Unlocking the Biblical Code That Proves the Existence of God
Timothy P. Smith with Bob Hostetler

Prove the existence of God with a biblical code?  The subtitle of this book put me off right away.  Not another secret code book!  Enough of that sort of thing.  I guess that makes me prejudiced against this book from the beginning.  I suspect I will not be the only one, but I did read it.  Nearly every word and I did skim though the glossary and the reading list.  Others will read it, too.

Smith’s story is fiction worthy, but the reader is told up front that it is a true story of the journey Smith took exploring some unusual occurrences in his own life.  With the help of Hostetler, a published author in his own right, Smith proceeds to tell his tale, albeit in a format that reads more like fiction.  I would have preferred a more decidedly nonfiction approach.  

Without loads of spoilers the book traces Smith’s dreams that link him to finding the strength of ancient forms of communication through symbols and other means.  What he found he decided to use in his search of Hebrew language Scripture.  He doesn’t omit objections that arise as he works through his story.  Could it be mere coincidence?  Or some clever old scribal tricks?  Or if you rearrange columns enough can anybody find secret codes? Good questions considering some of the material the public has already been exposed to in previous code type books.  Or is the author just some sort of person who is less than healthy emotionally?  Those objections were not overlooked.  That is a plus for the author.  

After reading this book I can’t say I’m convinced of any secret codes in the texts, but it was interesting reading his search for explanations for his findings.   

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for a review.  

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Review: The Real God: How He Longs for You to See Him by Chip Ingram

Review: The Real God: How He Longs for You to See Him
Chip Ingram
Baker Books

Product DetailsIngram says up front that his desire for those that read this book is “to engage the reader in a lifelong pursuit of knowing, seeing, and experiencing the Real God.” (15)  The Real God?  He means the one found in Scripture who has not been conformed to my ideas or desires.  So, is saying that I might have some distorted idea of God?  The nerve!  Yeah, that’s where I started with this book.  Doesn’t give an author much room to work.  I put the book down, went on vacation, and then came back to it, more just to get it off my to-do list than anything else.  

Not only did I discover that I needed a vacation, but that over time I had acquired a distorted view of the God of the Bible.  Time for some adjustment, and this book provided the means for that adjustment.  Ingram uses an older book by Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy, as a jumping off point for his work with this book.  There are other books that address the attributes of God, too, but Ingram brings a more current vernacular with more current illustrations to his readers with this one.  He also adds a tool he labeled B.I.O. (from bios meaning life) that gives the reader some action points related to the focus of each chapter.  His aim to do more than put some information in front of his reader.  Tozer had the same hope, I’m sure, but in a way that differed in accordance with his generation.  

If you sense a drift in your own spiritual walk, or are just wanting to know who this God is that Christians talk about so much, I’d recommend this book to you.  It’s not a speed read, but it will accomplish the desire the author has set forth in the beginning of his book.  

I received this book from the publisher in return for a review