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Amazing Grace
Amazing Grace
by Eric Metaxas
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

3.0 out of 5 stars The End of the Slave Trade, 20 April 2014
This review is from: Amazing Grace (Paperback)
An interesting, informative, very readable and factual account of Wilberforce’s life from childhood through to the abolition of the Slave Trade, presenting him as an intellectual character with a mind of his own, refusing to sign the 39 Articles when getting his degree because he was unsure about some of the Anglican tenets, and responding to stronger influences from the likes of Wesley Whitfield, Doddridge and Newton, leading to his conversion. Due recognition is given to support from the Dissenters (especially Methodists and Quakers), Granville Sharpe and the Clapham Sect, and to the opposition, including the Church of England with vested interests in the West India Plantations.
Victory, when it came in 1807, was only the abolition of the Slave Trade, not slavery. Slaves continued long after but at least it was the beginning of the end, so full marks to Metaxas when he says, ‘The slave’s humanity had been established; now it must be honoured’ (p 227).
Not such good marks, however, for the Introduction, marred by an encomium and a batch of extravagant claims, such as that he ‘destroyed an entire way of seeing the world . . . overturned the European civilisation’s view not only of slavery, but of almost everything in the human sphere . . . was simply the greatest social reformer in the history of the world . . . . (and that) . . . the America we know wouldn’t exist without Wilberforce’. Likening him to someone who finds a cure for a disease that is ravishing the world so that ‘no one suffers from it again— and within a generation or two no one remembers it ever existed’ has a hollow ring when one thinks of trafficking, child abuse and many other forms of slavery around the world. None of this however should detract from the book as a whole.


[(Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery)] [by: Eric Metaxas]
[(Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery)] [by: Eric Metaxas]
by Eric Metaxas
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars The End of the Slave Trade, 19 April 2014
An interesting, informative, very readable and factual account of Wilberforce’s life from childhood through to the abolition of the Slave Trade, presenting him as an intellectual character with a mind of his own, refusing to sign the 39 Articles when getting his degree because he was unsure about some of the Anglican tenets, and responding to stronger influences from the likes of Wesley Whitfield, Doddridge and Newton, leading to his conversion. Due recognition is given to support from the Dissenters (especially Methodists and Quakers), Granville Sharpe and the Clapham Sect, and to the opposition, including the Church of England with vested interests in the West India Plantations.
Victory, when it came in 1807, was only the abolition of the Slave Trade, not slavery. Slaves continued long after but at least it was the beginning of the end, so full marks to Metaxas when he says, ‘The slave’s humanity had been established; now it must be honoured’ (p 227).
Not such good marks, however, for the Introduction, marred by an encomium and a batch of extravagant claims, such as that he ‘destroyed an entire way of seeing the world . . . overturned the European civilisation’s view not only of slavery, but of almost everything in the human sphere . . . was simply the greatest social reformer in the history of the world . . . . (and that) . . . the America we know wouldn’t exist without Wilberforce’. Likening him to someone who finds a cure for a disease that is ravishing the world so that ‘no one suffers from it again— and within a generation or two no one remembers it ever existed’ has a hollow ring when one thinks of trafficking, child abuse and many other forms of slavery around the world. None of this however should detract from the book as a whole.


Unity in Process
Unity in Process
by Clive Barrett
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Second Phase of Ecumenism, 4 Dec 2013
This review is from: Unity in Process (Paperback)
A book for those who see themselves as ecumenists, for those who have given up on ecumenism and for those who know nothing about ecumenism, to revive the faint-hearted, energise the disappointed and stimulate the new boys on the block. Twenty contributors, half from Yorkshire and the north-east, all with varied experience of ecumenism, summarise where the ecumenical movement came from, how it has changed and where it is going.Five church leaders set the agenda with the idea that the time has come to tell ecumenical stories, listen to ecumenical stories and `open our eyes to see the Other in the other'. Christian unity as understood throughout the 20th century is not going to happen. Already in the 21st century people are finding unity where localism and laity work together doing what needs to be done, introducing a second phase of ecumenism, less national and more local, with less emphasis on the ultimate goal and more attention to interim questions and how we can make the most of living and working together where we are. Examples of what, where and how it is happening already are provided and matters of racism and other faiths are not neglected.


Epson Perfection V600 High Resolution 6400 x 9600 dpi Scanner
Epson Perfection V600 High Resolution 6400 x 9600 dpi Scanner
Price: £212.68

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Missing manual, 18 Nov 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A very good purchase and a very good Manual on the web. Pity it wasn't with the machine as a hard copy.


If This Is a Man / The Truce
If This Is a Man / The Truce
by Primo Levi
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.79

5.0 out of 5 stars The Drowned and the Saved, 9 April 2013
An excellent book. I first read it in 1981, stranded in Paris for nearly 24 hours on a flight from Geneva to London because Gatwick was fogbound, and when I saw recently that it had been re-issued I turned again to a sermon I preached at the time on the Drowned and the Saved (Levi's description of two kinds of people encountered in Auschwitz). The combination of Auschwitz, the reaction of fellow-travellers to a 'crisis' of a 24 hour delay and Levi's introduction of the parable of the Talents in Matthew 25: 14-29 led me to a new way of reading Matthew 25:29. My response this time was to get out the old sermon, dust it and share it on [...] Biblical Reflections. If it does no more than urge people to read Levi it will have been worthwhile.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 22, 2013 11:01 AM BST


Jewish Interpretation of the Bible: Ancient and Contemporary
Jewish Interpretation of the Bible: Ancient and Contemporary
by Karin Hedner Zetterholm
Edition: Paperback
Price: £21.44

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How Judaism reads the Bible, 22 Jan 2013
Two factors make this an important book. One, the Celebrations for the 400th Anniversary of the King James Version in 2011 alerted us to the fact that the Bible is capable of many interpretations; preaching and biblical scholarship did not begin yesterday. Two, in a shrinking world it is increasingly important to understand how our 'near neighbours' interpret their sacred texts. Karin Zetterholm's book makes a good start with Judaism. Addressing fundamental issues of tension created by continuity and change in Judaism, she focuses on same-sex relationships and medical ethics as examples. She then proceeds to outline the Jewish character of the early Jesus Movement, citing closely related rabbinic and gospel parables to enable us hear the parables of Jesus as the Jews might have heard them. She sees Jesus as a Torah teacher firmly rooted in Judaism and Paul as a Pharisee, with Judaism and Christianity not necessarily in fundamental opposition as much mid-20th century scholarship assumed. Finally, she acknowledges and explains varieties of interpretation between different contemporary forms and expressions of Judaism. An excellent study guide for readers with an open mind, particularly multi-faith groups seeking a clearer understanding of what it is like `over the wall'.


The Practice of the Bible in the Middle Ages: Production, Reception and Performance in Western Christianity
The Practice of the Bible in the Middle Ages: Production, Reception and Performance in Western Christianity
by Susan Boynton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.58

5.0 out of 5 stars The Bible Before the Auhorised Version, 16 Jan 2013
A timely reminder, following the Celebrations of 400 years of the King James Version (Authorised Version), that the Reformation did not begin in the 16th century nor the translation of the Bible into English in the 17th. Sixteen academics from UK and USA universities write in engaging fashion as they take us through the early centuries of Christianity when all we had was a loose colleciton of mss, with no evidence pror to the 7th century that they were ever read aloud or in a given order, and that `the Bible' was `still a fluid concept` as late as the 12th. They then explore the contribution of the monasteries to mission, study, copying and intepretation which, together with the major climate change which came with the Wycliffe Bible, laid a foundation for scholarly discipline and the development of Biblical Studies in the growing universities and sowed the seeds for the Reformation and the Renaissance. A book for the general library and secular bookshops as well as a tool for serious students and preachers of the Word.


Treasures Old and New
Treasures Old and New
by BLENKINSOPP
Edition: Paperback
Price: £18.19

4.0 out of 5 stars A Sketchbook of Biblical Theology, 2 Jan 2013
This review is from: Treasures Old and New (Paperback)
Beginning with an exploration of selected Pentateuchal texts and stories in the light of contemporary experiences Blenkinsopp succeeds in giving us a `little sketchbook of biblical theology' to be read `with ease' and `perhaps even with pleasure' as he puts it. So we have sacrifice as a means of belonging and a way of sustaining a traditional way of life, the Epic of Gilgamesh alongside the Garden of Eden as an introduction to facing mortality and the vicissitudes of life. Other topics include mortality, creation and the damaged world, Yahweh and `other gods' winding up with a study of corporate memory, institution and charisma, tradition and innovation, and the claims of the past and the claims of the future. Biblical interpretation both readable and relevant.


Biblical Canon, The: Its Origin, Transmission, and Authority
Biblical Canon, The: Its Origin, Transmission, and Authority
by Lee Martin McDonald
Edition: Paperback
Price: £19.94

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bible Origins, 2 Jan 2013
Written in 1987, for non-professional, to increase understanding of the origins of the Bible and the role of the Scriptures in the church, by an author whose early pilgrimage was in fairly conservative circles. The 3rd edition provides a fresh look at the perplexing questions of the Bible's origin and canonicity, rejecting earlier conclusions no longer tenable and taking into account much that has recently come to though still sticking only to that which can be backed with primary evidence.
Part 1 explores issues of Bible, canon and scripture with a level of scholarship more advanced students and specialists will appreciate. Part 2 handles the minutiae of the construction of the Hebrew Bible concluding that the whole process was much more fluid and the final form much later than used to be thought, closure probably having to wait until the 3rd century CE. Part 3 traces a similar process for the New Testament, beginning with Jesus and Paul followed by people such as Justin, Irenaeus and Eusebius, and the part played by heresies concluding that we have to wait until the 4th century for anything approaching a closed canon, always remembering that even after that the Bible of one community did not always match that of another.


The Word Militant: Preaching a Decentering Word
The Word Militant: Preaching a Decentering Word
by Walter Brueggemann
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.40

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poetic Imagination for Preachers, 1 Jan 2013
Eleven essays and articles on preaching, previously published between 1990 and 2002, reflecting Bruggemann's scholarship, Old Testament specialism, readability, commitment to preaching and interpretation,demonstrating the value of a poetic imagination and the importance of maintaining the link between preacher, Word and the believing community. Readiers who covet good preaching will value it for themselves. Some may not wish to be reminded that good preaching has to be subversive and counter-cultural but may nevertheless welcome the insights of one who while remaining loyal to the Word knows how to handle it. In a culture where nothing can be taken for granted he uses biblical themes to call for for a change of emphasis, from proclamation to testimony, and a rethinking of the genre of the sermon, exchanging `pulpit as judge's bench' for `pulpit as witness box'. Very important for potential preachers and those who seek to coach them.


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