Many book reviews tend to rehash in compact form the contents of a book. I am not going to do that here. To attempt it would be an injustice to the book itself. But I highly recommend The Unseen Realm by Dr. Michael S. Heiser.
Dr. Heiser, a professor of Hebrew and Semitic Languages, takes us on a journey and exposes not only the supernatural world described in passages of the Old Testament, but shows how the New Testament references these passages, how it fills out our Christian worldview, and reclaims the purpose God has for man.
Many of us have read Genesis 6:1-4. And there have been questions about what it means (I'm sure you've asked them too). But, have you read Deuteronomy 32:8 ESV? Or how about Psalm 82? This is where the journey begins by looking at the original Hebrew texts as well as the worldview of an ancient Israelite. Questions about angels, demons, giants and even about God Himself are tackled point by point in scripture and in the ancient Semitic texts of the region. This book will help you fully understand God's plan for man's salvation and our place in his world -both earthly and heavenly.
For more information on Dr. Heiser, visit his website at https://drmsh.com
Ever have a disagreement with a fellow Christian that go so heated that feelings were hurt? It happens. As Christians, we try to have very civil disagreements with others in the hope of showing Christ. But, there are times when even as we try, things get heated.
This is true even of the early church in the New Testament.
And after some days Paul said to Barnabas, “Let us return and visit the brothers in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they are.” 37 Now Barnabas wanted to take with them John called Mark. 38 But Paul thought best not to take with them one who had withdrawn from them in Pamphylia and had not gone with them to the work. 39 And there arose a sharp disagreement, so that they separated from each other. Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus, 40 but Paul chose Silas and departed, having been commended by the brothers to the grace of the Lord. 41 And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.
Here, we see that Paul and Barnabas, companions from the beginning of Paul's ministry, separated over their disagreement about Mark. We can see both sides of the argument: Paul's belief that burn me once shame on you, burn me twice shame on me. Barnabas' belief that Mark should get a second chance, that everyone has a moment of fear. But as we read the rest of the text, both went their separate ways and continued their work for the LORD.
These moments happen. They have to. We don't stop being sinful human beings when we come to Christ. If anything, we become more aware of our failings. So what is the takeaway? It's never ok to be purposefully disrespectful just because you disagree. But we do tend to get angry which is a valid emotion provided we do not sin. If we find that things are moving into a heated area, we should say our peace, then walk away. The enemy will take advantage of the moment to sow strife (and we are all too willing to participate without his influence). If we find ourselves being overly defensive about our position or argument, we should take a step back and re evalute. We should also be willing to listen to honest criticism. If we never think we are wrong, that is a sign we are not living in a repentant attitude.
We cannot get along with all other Christians as personalities clash, but we can make choices that though painful, are for the betterment of the church and the Gospel. And we can begin thinking about ourselves in a more sober manner.