Monday, October 4, 2010

Book Review: Wiersbe Bible Study Series: John

book cover

Get to Know the Living Savior
by Warren W. Wiersbe

ISBN-13: 978-1434765079
Trade Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook
Released: July 2010

Source: Review copy provided through the The B&B Media Group.

Book Description from Back Cover:
The book of John lays the very foundation of the Gospel: Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and through Him we begin to truly live. This study takes an in-depth look at the life of Christ, from a miraculous public ministry that confirmed His identity to personal revelations that can transform the life of every believer. Rich in theology and essential to evangelism, the book of John provides a definitive guide to Christ’s powerful message of hope.

The Wiersbe Bible Studies Series explores timeless wisdom found in God’s word. Based on Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe’s popular “BE” series, each study provides topical, relevant insights from selected books of the Bible. Designed for small groups or personal study, this twelve-week Bible study features selected commentaries from BE Alive and BE Transformed, engaging questions, and practical applications, all designed to help you connect God’s word with your life.

John: Get to Know the Living Savior is a Bible study of John that has 12 main lessons. It also has a short introduction and an ending summary lesson. This study can be used with small groups that meet once a week or as a personal Bible study. I really liked how the study remained God- and Scripture-focused throughout and helped me dig deeper into my reading of John. The questions invited thought and discussion, and I felt they were more effective than the questions typically found in Bible studies.

Each lesson started with a reminder to pray and with the reading of the next one or two chapters of John in your own Bible. The Bible study then asked two questions about what stood out to you in the reading. Next were eight questions that help you dig deeper into the themes found in the reading. Each of these questions was proceeded by a paragraph or two of comments or material quoted from the author's Be commentaries on John. Next were three questions reflecting on what was learned and how it mattered to your life today. The final question asked you to pick one idea from the reading to explore further in the coming week. Then you're prompted to say a prayer asking God to guide you in the areas you've noted during the study.

Overall, I was very impressed with this Bible study and would highly recommend it for small groups or as a part of your personal daily reading of the Bible.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt from Lesson One
God in the Flesh
(John 1-2)

Before you begin...
  • Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal truth and wisdom as you go through this lesson.
  • Read John 1-2. This lesson references chapters 1-2 in Be Alive. It will be helpful for you to have your Bible and a copy of the commentary available as you work through this lesson.

Getting Started

From the Commentary

Much as our words reveal to others our hearts and minds, so Jesus Christ is God's "Word" to reveal His heart and mind to us. "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father" (John 14:9). A word is composed of letters, and Jesus Christ is "Alpha and Omega" (Rev. 1:11), the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet. According to Hebrews 1:1-3, Jesus Christ is God's last Word to mankind, for He is the climax of divine revelation.
--Be Alive, page 20

1. As you read John 1:1-2, what stands out to you about the description of "the Word"? What does it mean that the Word was "with" God? That the Word "was" God? How does this opening contrast with that of the other three gospel accounts (Matthew, Mark, and Luke)? What does this tell us about John, the writer of this gospel?

More to Consider: Why do you think John refers to Jesus as "the Son of God" so many times in his gospel? (See John 1:34, 49; 3:18; 5:25; 10:36; 11:4, 27; 19:7; 20:31.)

2. Choose one verse or phrase from John 1-2 that stands out to you. This could be something you're intrigued by, something that makes you uncomfortable, something that puzzles you, something that resonates with you, or just something you want to examine further. Write that here.

Read more of Lesson One.

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