Friday, September 2, 2016

Two Shepherd Books | Book Review

I was recently in a thrift store and picked up what I thought was A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23. Turns out, it was another book in Phillip Keller's "Shepherd Trilogy." I finished reading it last week, and it was SO good. Since I was posting that review on here, I thought I'd back up and post a review of both of the "shepherd" books I had read. To find out more about the books, click the links on the titles.

I could quote half of the perhaps I'll just say you should read it. I have never known much about a sheep's life (I heard a few lessons by Dr. Larry Guthrie), so reading about how Psalm 23 directly applies to the year of a sheep's life (and, in turn, how it applies to believers with Jesus as our Shepherd), was really good! I finished the book with a "Wow!" Chapters 9 and 11 were probably the ones that stood out to me--talking about the rod and staff and then "surely goodness and mercy shall follow me." This little book leaves a lot to ponder and think upon!

(The only "disclaimer" is that the version I read was NIV, while I prefer KJV, if this would bother someone)

I'll go ahead and share just a few quotes:
"All the long and complex history of earth's religions, pagan worship, and human philosophy is bound up with this insatiable thirst for God."

"It is in the quiet, early hours of the morning that they are led beside the quiet, still waters where they imbibe the very life of Christ for the day. This is much more than mere figure of speech. It is practical reality. "

"It is he who makes sense and purpose and meaning come out of situations which otherwise would be but a mockery to me."

"He who has no sense of self-importance cannot be offended or deflated."

"Instead of finding fault with life and always asking 'Why?' I am willing to accept every circumstance of life in an attitude of gratitude."

In some ways, I think I liked this book better than his exposition on Psalm 23. It was a very good read with a lot of Scripture and parallels from real shepherds. I found fascinating the study of how Jesus enters into our lives vs. how the enemy enters. The enemy "sneaks over the walls," Jesus waits to enter the right way, not deceitfully.

This book clearly portrays God as holy and righteous and man as worthless sinners -- and yet evokes a heart of gratitude to our great Savior. I enjoyed it immensely and recommend it (my only personal qualm is that he used a few different Bible translations instead of going to the original languages to explain some of the verses).

There were so many quotes I liked. And I can't narrow down which few to share, so here are all of them...
"The only One who really has a right to manage the fold of my life is not myself, but God."

"If we are not sensitive to the overtures of His Spirit and quickly responsive to the distinct promptings of His Word, we are not going to go anywhere with Him."

"It simply is not enough just to agree with what God's Spirit may have said to us. It goes far beyond even becoming emotionally exercised about what we have heard. It is possible for people to weep tears of bitterness or remorse yet never move toward God. It is equally ineffective for individuals to become merely ecstatic about some spiritual issue, for, when the emotion has passed, they are still standing precisely where they were before the call came from Christ."

"It is presumption of the worst sort to claim His commitments to us, made so freely and in such generosity, while at the same time refusing to comply with His commands or wishes because of our own inherent selfish desires."

"The moment I deliberately do something definite either for God or others that costs me something, I am expressing love."

"He who has no sense of self-importance cannot be offended or deflated."

"We are often quick to forget our blessings, slow to forget our misfortunes."

"What Christ asks us to do as His followers is to concentrate on keeping close to Him....There is simply no substitute for this wondrous relationship with Him in a warped world."

"We enjoy the joy of the Lord to the degree we are indwelt by the very Spirit of God. We express the love of God to the measure we allow ourselves to be indwelt by God Himself."

"We love Him because He first loved us.
We love others because He first loved us.
We love at all because He first loved us."

"A good environment does not guarantee good men. But noble men do generate an improved environment."

"The man who would know God must be prepared to give time to Him."


Phoebe Knapp said...

Hey Amanda!
I have read A SHEPHERD LOOKS AT PSALM 23.I enjoyed it a lot. I have also read Phillip Keller's book titled LESSONS FROM A SHEEPDOG. It was SO good. You should read it!:)

Amanda T. said...

@ Phoebe - I've had my eyes on that one! I would really like to read it some day!

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