Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Book Review: Insights on James, 1 & 2 Peter

book cover

Insights on James, 1 & 2 Peter
by Charles R. Swindoll

ISBN-13: 9780310284321
Hardback: 336 pages
Publisher: Zondervan
Released: October 2010

Source: Review copy from the publisher.

Book Description from Publisher's Website:
Drawing on his vast experience as a communicator of God's Word, master teacher and communicator Chuck Swindoll presents his legacy to all who read and love the Bible: Swindoll's New Testament Insights series. Insights on James, 1 & 2 Peter, the newest addition to this landmark series, provides a wealth of colorful, detailed, and easy-to-understand insights into the letters of James and 1 & 2 Peter.

My Review:
Insights on James, 1 & 2 Peter is an excellent Bible commentary on James, 1 Peter, and 2 Peter. The author explained the meaning of various key Greek words to help the reader understand confusing passages and to bring out the full meaning of the text. He also provided information on the cultural and historical background and quoted similar statements made elsewhere in the Bible to help the reader fully understand the letter's message.

Each letter (James, 1 Peter, and 2 Peter) had it's own self-contained section in the book. The author started each by explaining who wrote the letter, when it was written, and who it was written to. He briefly described the writer's life up to the point the letter was written so we could see what influenced his writing. He included a time-line chart showing critical events in the author's life and historical events that influenced the writing. There was also a map showing where the people written to were located.

Each letter was studied overall and verse-by-verse in sections defined by the major themes in the letter. At the end of each thematic section, he discussed how we can apply the writer's message to our own lives. He also included occasional "journal" pages were he talked about how the verses just discussed had been applied or worked out in his life.

While you'll get the most insight into confusing passages by reading the book/letter's whole commentary, you can also look up just a single verse.

Despite the "digging deeper" nature of the commentary, the author explained things in a way that was easy to follow and understand. It's packed with information; there's very little "fluff." Overall, I'd highly recommend this book to anyone confused by passages in James, 1 Peter, or 2 Peter or to those who simply want to increase their understanding of these letter/books.

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.

Read more from the book.

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