Last week at the Band of Bloggers Conference I received 12-titles from a number of different publishers. The book I was looking forward to getting the most was Kevin De Young’s newest title, The Good News We Almost Forgot: Rediscovering the Gospel in a 16th Century Catechism.
After getting back home to Grand Rapids, placing the other 11-titles on my shelf, I kept out De Young’s new title and starting reading (like I always do) the book blurbs and could not believe what I read. C. J. Mahaney’s blurb states, “I’m sure this will be the best book on the Heidelberg Catechism I’ve ever read. I know it will be the frist.”
“I’m sure this WILL be…” C. J. did you really write a blurb for a book that you did not even read yet? I am speechless, then again it seems today that book blurbs are just about who you have writing them, and not what they have to say.
“The best book on the Heidelberg Catechism I’ve ever read…” C. J. are you unaware of the massive amount of material that has been written over the past 400-years on The Heidelberg Catechism, and yet never reading any of them, you state that this will be the best?
No offense to Kevin De Young, (and I do love his writing & speaking) but I can name a number of different books and material that are above and beyond Kevin De Young’s 2-3 page commentary/exposition per Lord’s Day’s in The Heidelberg Catechism. Work like:
- Zecharias Ursinus, Commentary onThe Heidelberg Catechism
- Lyle D. Bierma with Paul W. Fields and Charles D. Gunnoe and Karin Y. Maag, An Introduction to the Heidelberg Catechism
- George W. Bethune, Lectures on the Heidelberg Catechism
- Henry Kersten’s 52-sermons on the Heidelberg Catechism
- Joel Beeke’s Heidelberg Catechism Sermons
- Herman Hoeksema’s 3-volumes on The Triple Knowledge: An Exposition of the Heidelberg Catechism
- William Ames’s A Sketch of the Christian’s Catechism.
“I know it will be the first.” Seriously? The first book you ever read on the Heidelberg Catechism and you are blurbing it? Does anyone else see this as ridiculous as I do? It seems that a pop-icon in evangelicalism can write blurbs for other author’s without even knowing what they am talking about? Can I start writing blurbs on books for the Sovereign Grace movement on how the charismata still exists today in the Church? That’d be fun!
Better yet than all of this, is that Moody Publishing, a Dispensational Publishing House (which I am sure now is not Classical Dispy) published Kevin DeYoung, a pastor from the Reformed Church of America on The Reformed Heidelberg Catechism. Who would have ever thought the day would come when a Dispensationalist started publishing material for Confessional Covenant Theology. However, I like it, keep it up Moody!
Kevin DeYoung explains,
“For many Christians membership sounds stiff, something you have at your bank or the country club, but too formal for the church. Even if it’s agreed that Christianity is not a lone ranger religion, that we need community and fellowship with other Christians, we still bristle at the thought of officially joining a church. Why all the hoops? Why box the Holy Spirit into member/non-member categories? Why bother joining a local church when I’m already a member of the universal Church?
I’ve found that some people just won’t be convinced of church membership no matter what you say or how many times “member” actually shows up in the New Testament. But many people have not given serious thought to church membership. They are open to hearing the justification for something they’ve not thought much about.”
Read it all here.
Since I am at a conference today with Kevin DeYoung, why not you read his blog post on, “The Most Important Doctrine Many Never Think About.”
“If any doctrine makes Christianity Christian, then surely it is the doctrine of the Trinity. The three great ecumenical creeds—the Apostles’ Creed, the Nicene Creed, and the Athanasian Creed—are all structured around our three in one God, underlying the essential importance of Trinitarian theology.“