Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Severe Compassion by Gregory D. Cook

book cover
Severe Compassion
by Gregory D. Cook

ISBN-13: 9781629951737
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: P & R Publishing
Released: April 29, 2016

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description, Modified from Goodreads:
Gregory Cook helps us to navigate the book of Nahum, a poetic masterpiece that teaches us about God's love for his adulterous people. When we find God boring and the world fascinating, we commit treason but God, with severe compassion, refuses to abandon us. Cook illuminates Nahum's prophecy by pointing to its fulfillment in Christ and aids our understanding with historical, cultural, and literary background.

My Review:
Severe Compassion looks at the short, prophetic book of Nahum. This book is aimed at pastors and laymen rather than scholars. The author worked through Nahum by examining a few verses at a time. He'd explain any translation issues and cultural or historical aspects that provide further insights into the text. He looked at similar themes in other books of the Bible and suggested that Christ also fulfills some of these verses. I appreciate that he believes the text has not been corrupted and that Nahum had specific reasons behind his word choices.

However, since Nahum is only three chapters long, much of this book was a sermon series. For example, we're told about "plundering the silver" in context and then get a sermon on a proper attitude toward money. Keeping with the theme of the book, the author repeatedly calls on the reader to repent of specific sins and even urged the reader to question their salvation at one point. He also seems to feel that it's wrong to assure a person of their salvation even if they say they have accepted Christ. While I appreciate his emphasis on how horrible sin really is, I didn't agree with some of his assertions in his sermons. I liked the Bible study parts, though.

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.

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