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One Star Reviews

1001 Quotations That Connect | Book Review

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1001 Quotations That ConnectSince I have been sharing Christian quotes on Twitter for several years, I was delighted to see the book 1001 Quotations That Connect: Timeless Wisdom For Preaching, Teaching and Writing by the editors of Christianity Today. I took advantage of the reduced price and downloaded a copy to my Kindle. My first observation is the book structure, divided by eight topics:

  1. Apologists and Evangelists
  2. Celebrities and Newsmakers
  3. Fathers and Founders
  4. Martyrs and Missionaries
  5. Poets and Mystics
  6. Prophets and Activists
  7. Theologians and Theorists
  8. Writers and Preachers

Within each category you’ll find a few quotations, followed by the citation  source, recommended topics to incorporate the quote, and Scripture references. As an avid reader and someone who is passionate about sharing awesome quotes, I observed the shared highlights for 1001 Quotations That Connect: Timeless Wisdom For Preaching, Teaching and Writing were few! It’s rare to read a book without 50 or more highlights for one quote, and in this book I  found very few quotes were “liked” or highlighted. The publication date is 2009, so logically there should be more than 10 highlights on a favorite quote.

Most quotes are not worth sharing because they are taken out of context. For example, “Tolerance is the virtue of the man without convictions,” by G. K. Chesterton sounds like a parable open for personal interpretation. “The church is a counterflow to the undertow,” by Leonard Sweet is confusing without listening to Soul Tsunami.

Some famous people are only given two quotations, such as Elizabeth Elliot, while Charles Finney has one quote, and Billy Graham is quoted ten times in this book. Mother Theresa is listed with three quotations out of 1,001 quotes in this book.

I’m giving this book a one star rating because I would not share any of these quotations in theological research papers, Bible teachings or social media updates. Many of these quotes are also on BrainyQuote and GoodReads. If you want original and interesting content, research your own quotes by reading books by famous people, highlight your favorites as you read, and share them with the knowledge that you actually read the book or listened to the sermon which you are quoting.

In my opinion, this is not worth the $24.99 regular price and I was disappointed to spend $2.99 on the book.

 

Women in Christian Ministry (Book Review)

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Women in Christian MinistryNot all free books are worth reading, and some are downright awful! When I saw the book titled Women in Christian Ministry by Sis. Kimberly M. Hartfield I was drawn to the title. As a Womens Ministry Director, I was interested in learning how women serve in the Church. By the time I finished reading the book 41 minutes later, I realized it’s the worst book I’ve ever read! The theology was misaligned and misinformed. The editing and writing style were like none I’ve ever seen before. The entire book is 78 pages on Kindle.

Here are a few highlights:

“These women and many others, some of whom were married, some of whom were not, some who had a questionable history, and others who did not, all helped to support and further Jesus’ ministry. Though He may not have called them as He called His disciples, neither did He forbid them following Him, nor forbid their participation in His ministry.” (poor editing)

“We must pray for a godly person to show them the truth that we are God’s anointed ones just as they themselves are also.” (poor editing)

“One of the first women Yeshua loved was his Mother Mary. The interactions between Yeshua and this Mary were typical of mother and child relationships in that Yeshua asserted an independent spirit in those interactions.”

“There are so few godly men in the church and ministry today, that women might fill that void, lest the fields go unharvested and many souls be lost to the ungodliness of the times.”

“Baptismal Service Candidate for Baptism should place one hand on top and one hand underneath minister’s left forearm. While placing the left hand on the person’s right shoulder, raise your right hand and repeat the following: In observance of the teaching of Yeshua Christ, our Sovereign Savior, I baptize you, my child in the name of Yahweh God, Yeshua, the Christ, and the Holy Spirit. Move the left hand to the person’s nose…:”

On her website she calls this “Gender Neutral Godhead Baptismal” and her book theology argues for a gender neutral Godhead. She claims to be Southern Baptist though she does not reference her Bible translation in the book copyright or in the content.

This is the worst book I’ve ever read. She has published numerous books on Amazon and has a passion for writing Christian books. I’m unsure how this one made it to the Christian bestsellers list and captured my attention for 41 minutes today. 

My Amazon Rating 1/5

Book Review: Noah The Official Movie Novelization

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noahmovieThere are some heated conversations in social media and news magazines about the Noah movie, making it’s debut this weekend. Well known actors Russell Crowe and Emma Watson headline the movie, while the movie’s atheist director is stirring controversy. Once the movie makes it’s grand debut this weekend, Christians and their comments will exploding online! This “baiting the Christians” seems to happen this same time every year, as we prepare to celebrate the Resurrection of Christ on Easter Sunday. Is this simply a science-fiction movie, or is it mocking God and the Bible?

So my question is…if these Christians are being baited through social media and secular news, then what matters is their response. An unbelieving world (and an atheist director) are watching! Are these Christians speaking in Christ-like love, or anger?

If you are unsure about seeing the movie, then you might want to read the book first! You can’t join a conversation about something without discernment from God. Amazon has a 7-day return policy for ebooks.

I’ve decided to read the Noah: The Official Movie Novelization book, and discern if I will take my family to see the Noah movie. The book is $6.59 for Kindle, and a movie for my family of four in California costs $40.00 BEFORE we buy any popcorn or drinks! We already have tickets to see the God’s Not Dead Movie, also making its debut in our theater this weekend.

Update: I found the book unbiblical and the author even changed the words of Scripture! It took the historical events and turned them into a politically correct version where names are changed, purposes are redesigned and the message of hope is rewritten. Unlike the Bible, this book was not divinely inspired and is nothing more then entertainment and fiction.

To order copy of the Noah Movie Novel, CLICK HERE

About Mark Morris (via Amazon Author page)

Mark Morris is the author of over twenty novels, including Toady, Stitch, The Immaculate, The Secret of Anatomy, Fiddleback, The Deluge and four books in the popular Doctor Who range. His short stories, novellas, articles and reviews have appeared in a wide variety of anthologies and magazines, and he is editor of both Cinema Macabre, a book of horror movie essays by genre luminaries for which he won the 2007 British Fantasy Award, and its follow-up Cinema Futura. His recently published or forthcoming work includes the official tie-in novel for zombie apocalypse computer game Dead Island, a novelisation of the 1971 Hammer movie Vampire Circus, and The Wolves of London, book one of the Obsidian Heart trilogy, which will be published by Titan Books in 2014. Read more about author Mark Morris on his Wiki page when you CLICK HERE

Other Books by Author Mark Morris

The Ghost Next Door:True Stories of Paranormal Encounters from Everyday People

Doctor Who: Tales of Trenzalore: The Eleventh Doctor’s Last Stand

Hellboy: All-Seeing Eye (Novel)

Dead Island

Zombie Apocalypse! Horror Hospital

Based on the list of books written by author Mark Morris, I’d expect an action-packed, science fiction movie, similar to an episode of Dr. Who!

Book Review: Receiving God’s Love

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receiving Gods loveWhile prayerfully considering a new online Bible study with the Womens Bible Cafe ministry team, I ordered a copy of Receiving God’s Love: Women of Faith Study Guide Series for consideration. We were purposely seeking a book about God’s love for our next online Bible study. Our leadership team noticed several women in weekly small groups struggling with their identity as a Daughter of the King and God’s love for them. We prayed on this and I purchased several Bible study books based on God’s love.

Receiving God’s Love: Women of Faith Study Guide Series is a 10-chapter Bible study. Many of our leaders, myself included, love the Women of Faith ministry. The book has a two-page “foreword by Patsy Clairmont,” so she is NOT the author of the study. The first sentence of chapter one begins with “Have you ever tasted a Krispy Kreme® doughnut?” and the last paragraph of chapter one begins with “this week’s trinket simply must be a doughnut- if you can manage a warm Krispy Kreme® doughnut, all the better!” I immediately lost interest in the book and found the reference to indulgent food frustrating. Comparing God’s love to  Krispy Kreme® is not what I consider a deep and life-changing Bible study for women.

There are a total of eight  or nine study questions in each chapter. The time invested is limited and the study is superficial. In the chapter called “This I Know,” the author (s) write: “It’s a silly little tradition, but familiar enough. Picture a young lady sitting on a green slope dotted with wild flowers. In her hand she holds a daisy and she’s slowing plucking the petals and scattering them on the ground. ‘He loves me, he loves me not…'” The chapter also mentions the “Shoop Shoop Song” and I have no idea what they are referring to! They also mention the 1964 song “It’s in His Kiss” and provide the lyrics, suggesting we “turn to the song “Jesus loves me this I know…”

I’m sure there is a market for this book, however it does not suit the deeper online Bible studies that our ministry team is looking for. I found it incredibly frustrating. My sincere apologies to the unnamed authors who poured their hearts into writing the book. I am obligated to write honest reviews and this is my opinion based on many years of leading Bible studies for women.

The book cover is beautifully designed. I ordered a Kindle version as well as a printed copy, investing my heart into our book selection. Amazingly the book version arrived one day after I ordered it from Amazon, though I selected free two-day shipping. I returned my Kindle version and donated my printed version to the local library.

After careful examination, we did select another book for our online Bible study: He Is My All: Living in the Truth of God’s Love for Me (Design4living) by Debbie Alsdorf

Book Review Saying Grace Blessings for the Family Table

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sayinggraceI bought a book on the #1 Christian Bestsellers list on Amazon yesterday and returned it when I discovered it was NOT a Christian book! I purchased the book Saving Grace: Blessings For the Family Table  by David Dean and Sarah McElwain, because I saw it was a #1 Amazon Bestseller in Christianity. Then when I sat down to read my book I was disappointed to discover it was a collection of “blessings” from false gods. While the book is a collection of historical prayers, it is not based on Christianity. Some of the prayers include: Prayer of the Ga, Zuni Prayer, Islamic Prayer, Hindu Blessing, Armenian Grace..and Yiddish Proverb. My intent in buying the book was to find a collection of Christian prayers for meals. This was not the case so I returned the book I purchased. I’m not sure why it was categorized as “Christianity.”

The book begins with the disclaimer “Most blessings collected in Saying Grace address some form of the sacred, but also included are those like the ‘cowboy blessings’ and ‘singing graces’ that say thanks in a slightly more irreverent and humorous manner.” The authors also write “The graces found here are drawn from a variety of great religious books and connect us to our ancient pasts.” Buyer beware…this is not based on Christianity, though it is listed as a bestseller on the Amazon Christianity list.

Here is an example of a blessing from the book: “This ritual is One. The food is One. We who offer the food are One. The fire of hunger is also One. All action is One. We who understand this are One. HINDU BLESSING”

After reading some of the other Amazon reviews, I saw a few people realized it is a collection of blessings and were not offended by the content. The printed version apparently has some beautiful artwork. One reviewer suggested the book for a wedding gift and another for a First Communion gift. I disagree and think it would not be an appropriate gift for a Christian and in fact, might offend them! I was able to return the book I purchased following Amazon’s Kindle Return Policy and I wrote an honest review on my opinion of the book.

My Amazon Rating 1/5

To read more reviews of this book click here.

Related article: How Do I Return a Kindle Book?

 

QUESTION: Would someone please recommend a good Christian book for table prayers? I would like to use this at my Thanksgiving meal this year, I am having 22 guests for dinner and my husband will be saying grace. Thank you!