Love Matters More, by Jared Byas, a Review

Fear about being wrong in our beliefs has crowded out the clear message of Jesus’ life and death—the unmistakable emphasis in the Bible and in thousands of years of church tradition—love matters more.

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Love Matters More cover

Jared Byas has written a fantastic and engaging treatise on the need for Augustine’s hermeneutic of love. I find this call a necessary voice in our current communication between church and culture. The book is equal parts funny, heartfelt, inspiring, and convicting.

It’s interesting that those who do believe we can access absolute truth almost always also believe they are the ones who possess it.

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Subversive Meals: An Analysis of the Lord’s Supper under Roman Domination during the First Century

Subversive Meals

My first awareness of the Lord’s Supper was attending a church event on a Sunday afternoon. No one had cleaned up after morning worship and communion cups were still in their holders. I looked at the small glass, turned to my church-raised friend, and asked, “Do you do shots during church?”

At the moment, that was all I could imagine. If I had only known the origin of that “meal” was far more subversive than that!

Since all meals in the Roman Empire were political as well as social functions, what political function did the Lord’s Supper serve? This book seeks to offer an answer.

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Trains, Jesus, and Murder: The Gospel according to Johnny Cash

I’m not sure what I was expecting from this book. I think I was, in part, expecting neat little quotes about spirituality and Johnny Cash that could be distilled into bite-sized memes and encourage and impress my friends. This book is a lot deeper than that.

Can it be read devotionally? Absolutely. Should it? I’m not sure.

But if the gospel according to Johnny Cash is anything, it’s really not about our ability to walk the line. The gospel isn’t about our faithfulness to God; it’s about God’s faithfulness to us. Johnny Cash couldn’t walk the line. Nor can you or I or anyone else. God walks the line for us.

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Age of Kings: Pursuing God’s Heart in a Social Media World

Age of Kings

I don’t read nearly enough devotional material. Too often devotional books either stretch the Scriptures or stretch their applicable points. I found Bryce Ashlin-Mayo’s Age of Kings to be a gem and a compelling voice in today’s social media age.

To follow God faithfully in an age of kings and queens, we must allow the Holy Spirit to transform our obsession with external image into a concern for our inner lives, values, and character. God is not looking for people with perfectly manicured lives on the exterior; rather, He is looking for people whose inner lives are focused on Him, and who display integrity between their interior and exterior lives as a result.

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