The Essential Bible Companion: Key Insights For Reading God’s Word by John H Walton, Mark L Strauss & Ted Cooper Jr

51yVn5We+bL._SL500_AA240_This is really a great little book. It provides a two page synopsis of every book of the Bible. each color page has Key Concepts; Key Terms; Key Teachings and Purpose sections – all with some illustrations and or maps etc. The skill and usefulness of this book is the way it summarizes the contents and yet gives you such a depth of information.

A great resource. I have recommended and used it with my Historical Books of The Old Testament Class. Here is a sample from 1-2 kings

Bibleessentials1   bibleessentials2

Vacation Bible School Has Ended

It’s been quiet on the blog – last week was crazy with VBS. For 5 nights we feed and provided different programs for 130 men, women and children.

Busy but fun (mostly!). I wanted to share with you one of the videos we made for the worship time. Our Music Minister wrote a ton of songs for this VBS and this is one of them. If you know me, you might see me (and the youth minister Jason). Please remember this is copyrighted to Jon Blamire and Prince George.



One of the many emails we received about VBS came from someone who attended without children. They wrote:

To say the least it was truly an enjoyable week even for those of us who have an empty nest. The music was great as were the program, fellowship and food. It was evident that it took a tremendous amount of time, effort and creativity to put the programs together. The videos were an extra touch that made the programs unique and even more enjoyable.

Thanks again for all you do and the outstanding effort of the entire leadership team.




Even though I say so myself – this VBS which was written and produced in house is better than anything I have ever seen from Group. But then again, I would say that – wouldn’t I!!

Vacation Bible School – End of Day 2

We have had two fantastic days for Vacation Bible School. The kids program has gone great AND the adult program was also great. The worship has been awesome and the videos are brilliant – I wish I could show you but our music director is forbidding any public release until after VBS finishes!!! He even wrote a FANTASTIC (biblical) song with pluff mud in it (South Carolinians will know what that means). Three more days to go!

God is at work amongst his people!!

John (IVP New Testament Commentary Series) by Rodney Whitacre

419KSEW57FL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA240_SH20_OU01_This was written by my bosses former lecturer at Trinity School for Ministry in Pittsburgh. It is a good commentary. The advantage of this commentary is its size. This makes Whitacre’s comments concise and to the point, which you must NOT take to mean light. Whitacre is far from light on the text. He has great insight into the Gospel of John and often I would find things in here which were not even mentioned in Hendriksen, Keener or Kostenberger. Also his writing style is easy to read and you can sense the pastoral side of Whitacre. While Hendriksen was my favorite to use, Whitacre is the commentary I would recommend first to those who want to begin studying John.

The Gospel of John: A Commentary – 2-Volume Set by Craig Keener

41P0Y32EFSL._SL500_AA240_I liked Keener’s commentary on Matthew and like what he has written elsewhere. This two volume commentary on John is good. It has a wealth of historical background information – which some people do not like. There were a few times (only a few mind) where I  just want to get to the meaning of the text. There were a few places where I completely disagreed with him on the meaning of the text. But overall this is a useful addition to your studies in John.

One Of the Very Best Preachers

I’ve banged on before about how I think that Dr Paul Blackham is probably the best preacher I have ever heard – and I think is probably the best theologian in the UK. There is NO other preacher, in the UK or USA which I would rather hear and learn from than Paul Blackham (including Piper, Carson and co). I first met and got to know Paul at seminary. We become friends when we realized that our theology was very similar – especially our understanding that Christ appears in the Old Testament. His insight into scripture is a gift second to none. But don’t take my word for it. The blog, Christ The Truth also agrees – and he has some great talks from Paul to download. Go there, listen and feast on some great preaching.

John (Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament) by Andreas J. Köstenberger

41H40F0M1YL._SL500_AA240_I liked this commentary because Kostenberger gives you great overviews of other scholars view points in a  concise, easy to understand way. he is far btter at that than Don Carson is in his commentary on John. I have always felt Carson’s commentary to be over rated. Kostenberger’s clear and easy style helps you through the various issues of a passage. He sometimes missed or sketched over things which Hendriksen would some time in, but for the overall picture and summary of the passage you could not go far wrong with this one.