BA Books & Authors on the Web – April 25, 2014

Cover ArtNicholas Wolterstorff’s Journey toward Justice was reviewed in The Christian Century.

“This book is an extraordinary gift to the church, an invitation into an understanding of the Christian drama that is focused on advocacy for those who are being denied their fundamental value as human beings. Accessible yet demanding, it is a powerful contribution to the literature.”

The latest issue of Themelios includes reviews of a number of Baker Academic titles, including:

Wyatt Graham reviewed Psalms as Torah by Gordon Wenham.

At My Digital Seminary, Lindsay Kennedy reviewed Tremper Longman’s volume on Job in the Baker Commentary on the Old Testament Wisdom and Psalms.

Bob Hayton, at Fundamentally Reformed, shared a quote from G.K. Beal’s A New Testament Biblical Theology.

Joel Watts, at Unsettled Christianity, reviewed Liturgy as a Way of Life by Bruce Benson.


BA Books & Authors on the Web – January 31, 2014

Cover ArtAt Reading Acts, Phil Long reviewed Michael Bird’s Are You the One Who Is To Come? and Bruce Fisk’s A Hitchhiker’s Guide to Jesus.

“Fisk succeeds in presenting some of the more difficult problems for modern people studying the Historical Jesus in an entertaining and compelling fashion. The book would make an excellent textbook for a Gospels class at the undergraduate level and a good introduction for a layperson wanting to get an understanding of some of the more difficult issues discussed by Historical Jesus scholars.”

Joel Willitts reflected on The Suffering and Victorious Christ, by Richard Mouw and Doug Sweeney.

Craig Blomberg reviewed Raymond Collins’ Second Corinthians Paideia commentary, for the Denver Seminary Journal.

The 5th Edition of Tremper Longman’s Old Testament Commentary Survey was reviewed by Rick Wadholm.

At ThinkApologetics, Eric Chabot reviewed Introducing Apologetics, by James Taylor.

At Blogizomai, Kyle McDanell  reviewed Seven Events That Shaped the New Testament World, by Warren Carter.

David Naugle, at One Theology, reviewed Jonathan R. Wilson’s God’s Good World.

Anthony Le Donne recommended Jesus Among Friends and Enemies, edited by Larry Hurtado and Chris Keith.

At Transpositions, Jim Watkins discussed Bruce Ellis Benson’s Liturgy as a Way of Life, and its application to copyright law.

BA Books & Authors on the Web – November 8, 2013

Cover ArtThis month’s Christianity Today cover article “How Lewis Lit the Way to Better Apologetics” is taken from Michael Ward’s essay in Imaginative Apologetics.

“Lewis’s conversion was sparked (humanly speaking) by a long nighttime conversation with J. R. R. Tolkien and Hugo Dyson. They were discussing Christianity, metaphor, and myth. In a letter to Arthur Greeves (dated October 18, 1931), Lewis recounted the conversation. It is clear that questions of meaning—that is to say, of imagination—were at the heart of it.

At that point, Lewis’s problem with Christianity was fundamentally imaginative. ‘What has been holding me back . . . has not been so much a difficulty in believing as a difficulty in knowing what the doctrine meant,’ he told Greeves. Tolkien and Dyson showed him that Christian doctrines are not the main thing about Christianity. Instead, doctrines are translations of what God has expressed in ‘a language more adequate: namely the actual incarnation, crucifixion and resurrection’ of Christ.”

Jonathan Watson at the Logos Academic Blog interviewed Michael Allen, author of Justification and the Gospel.

Larry Hurtado briefly reviewed Craig Keener’s first two volumes on Acts.

Don Garlington reviewed Warren Carter’s Seven Events That Shaped the New Testament World, for RBL.

At Near Emmaus, Brain LePort reviewed The World of the New Testament, edited by Joel Green and Lee McDonald.

Byron Borger reviewed Journey toward Justice by Nicholas Wolterstorff, for the Hearts & Minds blog.

At For Christ and His Kingdom, Jordan Barrett reviewed Millard Erickson’s Christian Theology, 3rd edition.

Amanda MacInnis recommended The Suffering and Victorious Christ, by Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney.

Trent Nicholson reviewed Why Study History?, by John Fea.

Also, John Fea wrote an article titled “Here’s why we’re losing our democratic soul” for PennLive.

Brian at Right Lane Reflections reviewed Desiring the Kingdom, by James K.A. Smith.

At NT Exegesis, Brian Renshaw reviewed the Handbook of Women Biblical Interpreters, edited by Marion Ann Taylor and Agnes Choi.

BA Books & Authors on the Web – October 25, 2013

Cover ArtGeorge Wood reviewed Why Study History? by John Fea.

“Fea pitches his book primarily to college students interested in the study of history as a major, but also to history teachers and history buffs. I fall into the last category. And as a history buff, I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend this book, for several reasons.”

Mark Thiessen Nation responded to Roger Olson’s review of Bonhoeffer the Assassin?

Christopher Skinner at Peje Iesous shared some first thoughts about Francis Moloney’s Love in the Gospel of John. reviewed Hermeneutics, by Henry Virkler and Karelynne Gerber Ayayo.

At Christianity Today, Brandon O’Brien reviewed The Suffering and Victorious Christ, by Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney.


eBook Specials

Today only, Friday October 25, the Commentary on James eBook by Robert Gundry is available free at participating retailers. Learn more here.

Suffering, Poverty, and the Reformed Tradition – an Excerpt from The Suffering and Victorious Christ

The following is an excerpt from The Suffering and Victorious Christ, by Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney.


Cover ArtWhat we see in the Westminster presentation of incarnational suffering is an acknowledgment that the final suffering of Christ was redemptively effective only because he had lived a life of perfect conformity to God’s creating designs for human flourishing. But what often gets emphasized—as is the case with the Westminster portrayal— is the way Christ’s suffering differs from ours: he endured horrible agonies, unlike us, in the context of a sinless humanness.

What we fail to see spelled out at any length in much traditional Reformed thought, though, is the affirmation that his suffering was also like ours—an identification with the deepest hurts and hopes of the human condition.

That this requirement of incarnational solidarity with shared human suffering is not foreign to Reformed thought can be seen in the many examples of genuine Christlike concern for the poor. We need look no further than John Calvin in this regard. Calvin was very concerned to restore the office of deacon to what he argued was the biblical linkage between the diaconate and service to the poor—a connection that he argued had been lost in Catholic practice. In making his case in the Institutes, he endorses some rather strong claims of Ambrose, such as, “The church has gold not to keep but to pay out, and to relieve distress”; “Whatever, then, the church had was for the support of the needy”; and “The bishop had nothing that did not belong to the poor.”

What is absent in these genuine expressions of concern for the needy, though, is that those concerns be grounded in Christ’s incarnational identification with human neediness. Calvin wants the church to conform to biblical teachings about serving the poor. Kuyper, as we shall see below, moves in a more explicitly christological direction by pointing out that Christ, like the ancient prophets, called for justice for the poor. But neither says anything about Christ actually experiencing the marginalization and pain of those who suffer.

©2013 by Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney. Published by Baker Academic. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.


For more information on The Suffering and Victorious Christ, click here.

New Release: The Suffering and Victorious Christ, by Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney

Cover ArtAmerican theologians tend to focus on the great hope Christians have through Christ’s resurrection, emphasizing Christ’s victory while minimizing or ignoring his suffering.

Through their engagements with Japanese Christians and African American Christians on the topic of Christology, Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney have come to recognize and underscore that Christ offers hope not only through his resurrection but also through his incarnation.

In The Suffering and Victorious Christ, the authors articulate a more compassionate and orthodox Christology that answers the experience of the global church, offering a corrective to what passes for American Christology today.


“Richard Mouw and Douglas Sweeney address the ‘divine empathy’ of the incarnate Christ who, in the mysteries of the Trinity, not only created his fellow humans but also suffers with them. The authors’ exploration of neglected themes from Lutheran and Calvinist theologians will satisfy the historically minded, and their engagement with non-European and African American believers will illuminate the universal character of the gospel. Their depiction of Christ’s suffering as both absolutely unique to himself and necessary to join him completely to suffering humanity will challenge, humble, and inspire.” – Mark Noll, University of Notre Dame

“Following Barth and listening to African American and Japanese voices, Mouw and Sweeney help us see that the incarnation and sufferings of Christ, properly understood, are not a forfeiting of God’s glory but an expression of it. Mouw and Sweeney have helped deepen our christological moorings with a Christology that reflects in deeper ways God’s redemptive work in the global church throughout space and time.” – Timothy C. Tennent, Asbury Theological Seminary

“Decades ago, black liberation theologian James Cone invited white theologians to listen closely to the spiritual insights of people of color. The Suffering and Victorious Christ does just that. With sensitivity and skill, Mouw and Sweeney show how much white American Christologies can benefit from Asian and African American histories and theological reflections. As we still strive to create the ‘beloved community’ Martin Luther King Jr. preached of so powerfully, we need to spend time with more books like this one.” – Edward J. Blum, San Diego State University

“This is a remarkable testimony of a theological journey in search of resources for a compassionate Christology through American Christianity. The journey starts rather unconventionally with conversations with Japanese theologians who emphasize the image of a suffering Christ in contrast to Western triumphalism. Readers are guided through the thick woods of Protestant orthodoxy, Reformed dogmatics, nineteenth-century German philosophy, Puritan New England, and the American South….At the end of the journey, readers will have a solid grasp of what it means to be faithful to the core of our common Christian tradition today while at the same time staying attentive to the voices of contemporary critiques.” – Anri Morimoto, International Christian University


Richard J. MouwRichard J. Mouw (PhD, University of Chicago) is professor of faith and public life at Fuller Theological Seminary. He served as the president of Fuller Seminary for twenty years and previously taught at Calvin College and the Free University in Amsterdam.

Douglas A. SweeneyDouglas A. Sweeney (PhD, Vanderbilt University) is professor of church history and the history of Christian thought and chair of the department at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, where he also directs the Jonathan Edwards Center and the Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding.

For more information on The Suffering and Victorious Christ, click here.