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Reviews Written by
K. Moss "Kevlet" (Cardiff, UK)

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Ending Is Beginning
Ending Is Beginning
Offered by UKPaperbackshop
Price: £2.32

5.0 out of 5 stars This one hits the spot, 22 Aug. 2014
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This review is from: Ending Is Beginning (Audio CD)
I have no reservations about this album, whatsoever. I had not heard of Downhere until last June, and was introduced to the track 'Cathedral Made of People' from this disc, which is one of those inspiring, anthemic pieces you can never quite get enough of.

What can I say? Well-crafted, thought-provoking lyrics. Wonderful melodies. Great, gutsy vocals. Riffs that stick in your head, and you find them playing through your mind as you wake up in the morning. A quite a surprising degree of variation in style across the album - so there's something here for everybody.


Kingdom Triangle: Recover the Christian Mind, Renovate the Soul, Restore the Spirit's Power
Kingdom Triangle: Recover the Christian Mind, Renovate the Soul, Restore the Spirit's Power
by James Porter Moreland
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.12

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Readable, challenging and potentially transforming, 11 Aug. 2014
Like a previous reviewer, I have noted some common content to another of JP Moreland's other books ("Love your God with all your mind") which is an excellent treatment on the place of the mind, how we may nurture it, and how strategically it operates in the life of the Christian. I do not, however, think that this book is any the weaker for going over some of that material - JP's intention is to challenge us over the 'thinness' of our worldview, and what we may do to rectify matters.

I have been fortunate to study under JP Moreland, and the book, refreshingly, reads like he speaks. It is forthright. He does not pussyfoot around issues. You are never in any doubt where he stands on topics that other writers get all ambiguous over. His diagnosis of the state of conservative Christianity is I think entirely accurate, and I value the way in which his prescriptions of solutions are often highly specific. If the book is at times a difficult read, it is not because JP sets out to baffle us with terminology, but rather because the implications of his argument are so challenging.

For anyone who has been nurturing the suspicion that our worldview is impoverished due to naturalism and postmodernism, JP's treatment of these two deeply flawed philosophies is extremely helpful. It is not an academic treatment (he has written elsewhere on that level), but rather a highly practical plea to encourage Christians to reclaim their birthright. It is a book I will want to read again, just as soon as my wife lets me have it back!


Sidney Chambers and The Shadow of Death (Grantchester Mysteries Book 1)
Sidney Chambers and The Shadow of Death (Grantchester Mysteries Book 1)
Price: £3.37

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Delightful read!, 21 July 2014
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These stories are well-written, and in their own way quite charming. As interesting as the main plots are, Sidney's internal ruminations, as he explores the often porous membrane between faith and real life, are the real delight of the piece. The narrative is very nicely and convincingly situated in a believable 1950s Cambridge. There is something quite Jane Austinesque about the thought life which provides the backdrop to the plot.


The First R. Austin Freeman MEGAPACK ®: 27 Mystery Tales of Dr. Thorndyke & Others
The First R. Austin Freeman MEGAPACK ®: 27 Mystery Tales of Dr. Thorndyke & Others
Price: £0.74

3.0 out of 5 stars Turn of the century detective fiction, 21 July 2014
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Quite entertaining. Very dated, but that's part of the charm. The individual stories are quite brief which makes this an ideal kind of bedside reader.


Figures of Speech Used In The Bible
Figures of Speech Used In The Bible
Price: £2.23

3.0 out of 5 stars One of those cases where the physical book would work much better!, 21 July 2014
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Useful, and without doubt full of a great deal of relevant guidance. For an ebook, however, this is insufficiently structured, so it is all but impossible to find your way around. Is it the kind of textbook that one would read from cover to cover? No, it is a reference book - and therefore woefully under-categorised to allow the reader to access the text in a relevant fashion.


The Body [2001] [DVD]
The Body [2001] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Antonio Banderas

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed it. The acting is a tad wooden in ..., 21 July 2014
This review is from: The Body [2001] [DVD] (DVD)
Well, I enjoyed it. The acting is a tad wooden in places, but overall the film does what it has to do. The premise of the film seems to be the question of what we base our faith upon. The film supplies several answers: do we base it on what 'the church' tell us (or indeed any other body which claims to have authority over us - and that could include Richard Dawkins' high priestly caste of scientistic atheists)? Do we base it on our own strong desires for something or other (as the Jewish politician suggests is the reality). Or do we base it on something in the realm of fact?

The film ends in a slightly ambiguous way, but makes it clear that faith in human authority (ie. church or secular Jewish politics) is simply not enough.


Samsung WB250F Smart Camera 2.0 with Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity Cobalt Black (Black) (14MP CMOS, 18x Optical Zoom) 3.0 inch HVGA Touch Screen (discontinued by manufacturer)
Samsung WB250F Smart Camera 2.0 with Built-In Wi-Fi Connectivity Cobalt Black (Black) (14MP CMOS, 18x Optical Zoom) 3.0 inch HVGA Touch Screen (discontinued by manufacturer)

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars There is a reason why it was cheap, 10 July 2014
It was hopeless. The lens jammed every time it opened, and the camera had to be reset. I returned it the next day.


Metamorphosis [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Metamorphosis [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Offered by Smaller World Future
Price: £29.69

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, stimulating and valid, 10 July 2014
This is a lovely film. The production quality is easily as good as the kind of natural world pieces they show on TV. What is useful about this, is that it leaves you wrestling with the implications. In the modern Darwinist world, people are not allowed to persist in that state - they are usually told, quite forcibly what to believe.

In the UK, it is now an invariable pattern of life that, when the BBC show their beautifully-crafted videos celebrating the complexity and specific adaptations of the natural world, Richard Dawkins (or an acolyte) is wheeled in to tell you that, although what you are seeing looks designed, it can't possibly be. Here, the producers let the evidence build cumulatively, so that it becomes apparent to any viewer that without teleological design and processes, these butterflies simply would not exist. The commentary at the end is helpful, but actually almost unnecessary. Biological philosopher Paul Nelson and scientist Anne Gauger make it clear that the phenomenon of metamorphosis requires teleology, and that in turn needs a Designer.

This is a lovely film. Compelling, beautifully produced, educational. I suspect that it would be enjoyed by people of most ages.


A Quest for Godliness
A Quest for Godliness
by J. I. Packer
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five stars minimum, 28 April 2014
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This review is from: A Quest for Godliness (Paperback)
It looks like I am the first UK reader to post a review of this excellent overview of the Puritans on Amazon...which given the significance of Packer's masterly distillation is a bit depressing. To be fair, I would probably not otherwise have got around to reading the book (much as I love Packer's writings), but it was a required text for my M.A.

There is a lot that could be said about this introduction to the ministry, theology and writings of the Puritans. Firstly, the author's own style of writing is engaging, and hooks you in - there are frequent points of challenge, as one compares the priorities and emphases of the Puritans, with those of our day, and one is left frequently wondering why mainstream churches so very often, and so conspicuously avoid taking seriously the lessons from this period in our history. Packer does a good job of dismissing those old (frequently secular) caricatures of this period in church history, which might otherwise cause embarrassment to Christians who haven't studied the subject.

Secondly, I was reminded again of how the Puritan divines were preaching and writing to ordinary people, struggling with the kinds of issues of life which are not so remote from our experience. Their books and sermons may at times be a little long and verbose, but (for the most part) they are speaking plainly and directly to the realities of human experience. So, I was reminded of the sheer accessibility of the writings of Sibbes, Baxter, Goodwin and others...and, thanks to Packer, I even began to understand a little better how Owen's slightly awkward, formalised way of writing made a great deal of sense.

Thirdly, Packer covers in real detail all those points of tension which any student will experience when looking at the Puritans: (1) the relationships between the Established Church, conformity, nonconformity, presbyterianism and the 1662 Act of Uniformity; (2) the character and basis for Puritan theology - how they approached the Bible, exegeted it and applied it; (3) the impact of Calvinistic doctrine, especially upon evangelism; (4 the very strong emphasis of the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the church community.

In the process, I learned quite a few new things. Puritan theology was the admiration of continental Europe, with many writings being translated into many european languages. The Puritans pretty much invented the 'popular Christian book', with many titles running to 20,000 or even 40,000 copies in their first and second print-runs - that's huge even by modern-day standards. Some titles, such as John Owen's 'The Death of Death in The Death of Christ' remain unsurpassed in terms of the quality and thoroughness of the treatment of the core truth of the atoning work of God's Messiah. And, I discovered how well-read relatively unlearned people were: Bunyan, by the age of 15, had already read a series of books which would be beyond the ability of most people today.

The joy of this book is that Packer unfolds the core qualities and emphases of the Puritans against the backdrop of the decline in Western spirituality in the 20th and 21st Centuries - showing that this theology and spirituality is very much the antidote to what Jaques Barzun calls the 'decadence' of the present age (http://www.amazon.co.uk/From-Dawn-Decadence-Western-Cultural/dp/0613708504/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398685975&sr=8-1&keywords=barzun). The answer to our condition is not some 'new' gimmick, technique or theological novelty - it is the rediscovery of something that we have lost, on the way.


Answering Islam: The Crescent in Light of the Cross
Answering Islam: The Crescent in Light of the Cross
by Norman L. Geisler
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A useful contribution, 24 April 2014
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If I have a criticism of this book, it is that it repeats its content just a little too often. I would rather have had less repetition, and perhaps a little more supporting footnotes.

Overall, however, it is an accurate representation of the kinds of attack that islam makes on the Christian Gospel, as presented in the New Testament. All of the rather spurious arguments against the intellectual basis for Christian belief, I have encountered on the lips of muslim apologists over the years. The same penchant for taking biblical texts out of context, the same seizing upon verses that are cited to 'prove' some kind of biblical link to Muhammed - these things so clearly do damage to the clear sense of the text, as well as the supporting testimony elsewhere, that one cannot help wonder at the intellectual convolutions that must be necessary to sustain such positions. In short, Geisler and Saleeb are far from misrepresenting the kind of misrepresentation that I have encountered over many years from islamic apologists - in fact, I would say that they are understating the shockingly poor excuse for 'scholarship' that one encounters habitually.

Those of us who strive to sustain a 'neutral' position on the issue of islamic scholarship might well recoil from the implications of this volume, but my own experience in dialoguing would suggest that the level of misunderstanding and misrepresentation within mainstream islamic thought is, genuinely, that bad. Overall, this is a useful contribution, and Geisler's case is assisted throughout by its moderate tone and clearly accurate understanding of the Qur'an.


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