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    Books about God (Other than THE Book)

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    Paeter
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    Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Paeter on July 2nd 2010, 5:58 pm

    Anyone ever hear of "Beyond The Cosmos" by Hugh Ross? He's an astrophysicist who applies the latest scientific discoveries to the study of God. This book is about dimensionality and what it can tell us about things like "Free Will VS. God's Sovereignty", "The Existence Of Evil", what I call "The Cosmic Transaction" on the cross, and how God can give his full, constant, personal attention to billions of people at once. Fascinating stuff!

    Wayne Grudem's Systematic Theology was a great first theology book for me.

    Currently, I'm muscling my way through Norman Geisler's 4 volume Systematic Theology and CRAP is it tough stuff!

    Any other good books to recommend?


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    Hackmodford
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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Hackmodford on July 3rd 2010, 11:05 am

    Pilgrim's Progress
    I also occasionally like to delve into the other books of the bible that didn't make it into canon, but I'm not sure on how much trust to put into them. But some of them are a good read anyways... some seem really catholic to me though O_o


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    Paeter
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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Paeter on July 3rd 2010, 12:07 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:Pilgrim's Progress
    I also occasionally like to delve into the other books of the bible that didn't make it into canon, but I'm not sure on how much trust to put into them. But some of them are a good read anyways... some seem really catholic to me though O_o

    I've not read any of the Apocrypha myself. They've never had the same level of evidence to support their authenticity that the books of the Bible have. But my friend, The Hebrew-Greek Bible Geek thinks they are still interesting. They're on my reading list, but i think I want to tackle the writings of Josephus first.

    He was a respected historian and contemporary of the New Testament time period who was not a believer, but supports the historical accounts of the New Testament with his own writing.


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Hackmodford on July 3rd 2010, 12:20 pm

    Paeter wrote:
    Hackmodford wrote:Pilgrim's Progress
    I also occasionally like to delve into the other books of the bible that didn't make it into canon, but I'm not sure on how much trust to put into them. But some of them are a good read anyways... some seem really catholic to me though O_o

    I've not read any of the Apocrypha myself. They've never had the same level of evidence to support their authenticity that the books of the Bible have. But my friend, The Hebrew-Greek Bible Geek thinks they are still interesting. They're on my reading list, but i think I want to tackle the writings of Josephus first.

    He was a respected historian and contemporary of the New Testament time period who was not a believer, but supports the historical accounts of the New Testament with his own writing.

    Aww yes... Josephus. I think my boss/friend read that and said the guy was really cool.

    But I'm not talking about the "apocrypha" (though the books I'm talking about are labeled as aprocyphical (or something)) I'm talking about the books that aren't even in the apocrypha. Some of them are in other region's bibles but some have never been considered "canon" wereas the apocrypha was at one time in the king james bible. (I even have the king james translation of the apocrypha)
    My favorite was the Book of Enoch. But then they started talking about making some kind of image of God and thought NOOOO because God would never want an image of himself on the earth (unless it's just people as his creation) But they were blatantly making some kind of idol in the story. Besides that the book nearly had me to tears. It's got a really cool kinda of supernatural/scifi feeling to it. Definatley just check it out. Wink


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    WhiteBoy
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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  WhiteBoy on July 3rd 2010, 12:32 pm

    I have thought they would be interesting to read, too, from a historical perspective...just like the writings of Josephus. But I would not consider them "books of the Bible" *because* they were not included into the canon. As such I cannot accept them as truth.

    lol...funny that you mention the book of enoch as being sci- fi-ish because I think Enoch's life was kinda sci-fi-ish anyway, right? I like to imagine what it must have been like to walk with God. Then one day just be taken away...wow!


    Last edited by WhiteBoy on July 3rd 2010, 12:37 pm; edited 2 times in total


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Hackmodford on July 3rd 2010, 12:34 pm

    Okay I have a general question that I've never been able to find a real definate answer for.

    What is canon?
    Who decides?
    Could we be slightly off?

    Edit: Just hypothetical questions I like to ask to make people think Wink


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  hvymtlcowboy on July 3rd 2010, 1:05 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:
    Paeter wrote:
    Hackmodford wrote:Pilgrim's Progress
    I also occasionally like to delve into the other books of the bible that didn't make it into canon, but I'm not sure on how much trust to put into them. But some of them are a good read anyways... some seem really catholic to me though O_o

    I've not read any of the Apocrypha myself. They've never had the same level of evidence to support their authenticity that the books of the Bible have. But my friend, The Hebrew-Greek Bible Geek thinks they are still interesting. They're on my reading list, but i think I want to tackle the writings of Josephus first.

    He was a respected historian and contemporary of the New Testament time period who was not a believer, but supports the historical accounts of the New Testament with his own writing.

    Aww yes... Josephus. I think my boss/friend read that and said the guy was really cool.

    But I'm not talking about the "apocrypha" (though the books I'm talking about are labeled as aprocyphical (or something)) I'm talking about the books that aren't even in the apocrypha. Some of them are in other region's bibles but some have never been considered "canon" wereas the apocrypha was at one time in the king james bible. (I even have the king james translation of the apocrypha)
    My favorite was the Book of Enoch. But then they started talking about making some kind of image of God and thought NOOOO because God would never want an image of himself on the earth (unless it's just people as his creation) But they were blatantly making some kind of idol in the story. Besides that the book nearly had me to tears. It's got a really cool kinda of supernatural/scifi feeling to it. Definatley just check it out. Wink

    I think you are refering to what they call 'Agnostic Gospels'. The 'Canon' books were books that were able to be traced back to being written within the time frame of people who lived during Jesus' time. Whew! Thats a mouthful. It meant that they were written and accepted as true during the times that witnesses to the events could still dispute them as true. They also support each other.

    'Agnostic Gospels' Were written around 100years after the crucifixion of Christ. Therefore there was no one to dispute it as untrue or to verify that it was true because everyone living during Jesus' time had passed away. They also had some versus or parts that conflicted with what accepted 'canon' books stated.

    That's the way I understand it anyway. If anybody knows different I would like to understand it better myself.

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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Paeter on July 3rd 2010, 1:13 pm

    I'm just now getting back into some "Canon" stuff in a study with a friend. I read up on it more in college, but that was about 10 years ago so I'm pretty rusty. But hvymtlcowboy laid out the fundamentals well.

    I'd suggest "Evidence That Demands A Verdict" by Josh McDowell. You can find it in two volumes or as a combined volume and it's been around a long time, so finding it used is pretty likely.

    There you can get a very good idea of how the canon was assembled, the criteria for entry into canon and even why some specific books were not included. Good stuff.


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  UKSteve on July 9th 2010, 1:33 pm

    Not sure if this is the kind of thing you meant Paeter, but if you need a little light reading in between all that systematic theology, Imaginary Jesus by Matt Mikalatos is one of the funniest books of any kind I've read in a long time. It's like The Shack written by Robert Rankin (not sure if he's broken the US yet?), and currently holds the auspicious title of 'The Book I Wish I Had Written'.

    Here endeth the gratuitous plug.

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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Hackmodford on July 9th 2010, 1:38 pm

    Can you explain it a little more? The video was cute...


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  ProfessorAlan on July 9th 2010, 5:14 pm

    Hackmodford wrote:Okay I have a general question that I've never been able to find a real definate answer for.

    What is canon?
    Who decides?
    Could we be slightly off?

    Edit: Just hypothetical questions I like to ask to make people think Wink

    This is the greatest leap of faith that I take as a believer -- I have faith that the Council of Nicea got it right, that the work they did defending (and defining) orthodoxy and the canon were correct.

    But in reading the non-canonical letters and gospels, I am more and more convinced that they got it right.

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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  UKSteve on July 10th 2010, 3:33 am

    Hackmodford wrote:Can you explain it a little more? The video was cute...
    Explain Imaginary Jesus? Oh dear, that's not easy!

    It's a sort of comic fantasy autobiography about the author's search for the real Jesus. No, that doesn't quite do it justice...

    Time travel, talking donkeys, the Secret Society of Imaginary Jesuses... surely by now you either want to read it or you think I just dreamed it up after somebody spiked my lemonade.

    I reviewed it recently, and the first chapter can be downloaded from the imaginary website.

    Hmmm, now I think that Mikalatos fella owes me some publicity...

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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  WhiteBoy on July 14th 2010, 11:15 am

    This is the greatest leap of faith that I take as a believer -- I have faith that the Council of Nicea got it right, that the work they did defending (and defining) orthodoxy and the canon were correct.

    Like Paeter, it's been a while (not 10 years) but still long enough where it's rusty in my head. I have the Josh McDowell book, so I may go read up on that again. From what I remember the Council of Nicea was more or less an "official sanctioning" of what was already accepted by virtually every church out there. (Try getting everyone in the same church to agree on something, let alone every church!) Smile


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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  ProfessorAlan on July 15th 2010, 1:14 pm

    WhiteBoy wrote:From what I remember the Council of Nicea was more or less an "official sanctioning" of what was already accepted by virtually every church out there.

    No, I don't think it was that clear-cut beforehand -- that's why they called the Council, to settle these issues. Gnosticism was in decline, but Arianism was less than a decade old, and was becoming a real threat to what would be accepted as orthodox doctrine.

    What Nicea gave us was both the Creed, and the canon, and to be honest, I don't know which came first. In other words, I don't know if they first rejected Arianism and affirmed orthodox understanding of the Trinity, and then selected a canon that fit that doctrine.

    I think that history leans towards the idea that they had a relatively firm grasp on the canon, maybe 24 of the 27 books pretty much settled (this may be what you were referring to), and the Council worked out the details ("no" to the Didache, "yes" to Revelation, for example). And then they developed the Creed, which gave us our basic doctrine, especiall the Trinity and the Diety of Christ, and put outside the bounds of orthodoxy such heresies as Gnosticism, Donatism and Ariansim.

    On a side note, how different would our Christian entertainment be if they had actaully kept Revelation out of the Bible? I mean, no Left Behind ??????

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    Re: Books about God (Other than THE Book)

    Post  Paeter on July 15th 2010, 6:16 pm

    ProfessorAlan wrote:

    On a side note, how different would our Christian entertainment be if they had actaully kept Revelation out of the Bible? I mean, no Left Behind ??????

    Hmmm. Probably some pros and cons to that one. Wink


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