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Johan Maurer (Portland OR (USA) and Elektrostal (Russia))

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Signs of Salvation: New Life Where Grace And Truth Meet: a Biblical Meditation
Signs of Salvation: New Life Where Grace And Truth Meet: a Biblical Meditation
by Ben Richmond
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars A more adequate understanding of salvation, 28 May 2009
Ben Richmond's important book takes the word "salvation" and restores its biblical beauty. There is no magical piety; divine shell-games of atonement are put in perspective. In their place: a holistic understanding of salvation in a covenant context.

The covenant that God established with us has been demonstrably broken, but its restoration is a communal task--not just individual--and it begins in this life, not just the next. Richmond shows that when Jesus himself refers to salvation, it is more often in the context of physical safety, well-being, and healing in this life than in the context of facing divine judgment. Salvation involves restoration and reconciliation with God--a new covenant made possible by Jesus--and the signs of that restoration begin in the here and now.

The foundation of this book is the biblical study with which Richmond defends these understandings of salvation and covenant. He then proceeds to unfold a vision of what the "signs of salvation" might (should?) look like in a real-life covenant community. It would be a "listening community," inclusive and mutually submissive; a "bountiful community" in which grace has practical economic dimensions; a "peaceable community" where the Lamb obtains the victory (the only victory that matters); and a "community of grace and truth, which recognizes sin (whether the private sins of its members or the great social sins of oppression and violence) for the sole--and glorious--purpose of carrying out the power Jesus has given to bind and loose."

I doubt you'll ever read a more joyful book of theology. And it's a book, not just for Quakers or for peace churches, but for the whole Christian church, and even for non-Christians who wonder whether there's any genuine content at all in that troublesome word "salvation."

Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth
Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth
by Richard Foster
Edition: Paperback

28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Accurately described as a Quaker classic, 10 Dec. 2003
Richard Foster is probably this age's best selling Quaker author and his books represent the best insights of the Quakerism that prevails in most of the world - not just the USA - although not in the UK.
This book, Celebration of Discipline, caught grief from both liberals and fundamentalists (within and outside Quakers). The liberals sometimes object to his biblical emphasis, and the fundamentalists sometimes object to his "political" advocacy of social concern as well as to his use of meditative disciplines. In fact, the inclusion of meditation in his writings (very congenial to Friends/Quakers) resulted in a brief campaign to have him excluded as a speaker from some evangelical events.
However, many of us appreciate his gracious, tender approach, his willingness to be self-disclosing, and his humor.

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