Monday, May 20, 2013

Book Reviewof Charts on the Life, Letters and Theology of Paul by Lars Kierspel

Charts on Charts on the Life, Letters, and Theology of Paul
Lars Kierspel
ISBN 978-0-8254-2936-1
Kregel Academic
Reviewed by Clint Walker

Although I am not an academic or a student, I am an avid learner. I love to read, to grow, and go deeper in my understanding. So, although my uses for Charts on the Life, Letters, and Theology of Paul are not as numerous as those scholars and students delving deep into Pauline studies, I still think this book contains excellent resources to further my understanding of God's truth and my ability to teach those God has put under my care as a pastor.

This is a large book full of numerous charts that help to organize information in a quick, easy to understand way. The book is divided roughly into thirds, with a third of the book being about Paul's person, a third being about the specific letters he wrote, and a third of the book dedicated to organizing the theology that was expressed in those letters. There are also some background materials as well.

What I find completely fascinating about my experience with this book is that just having some subjects explored and charted on a sheet of paper makes me think about and see Scripture in a new way. For instance, Kierspel has a chart that compares the similar ways that Luke refers to Jesus in his gospel, and the way he refers to Paul in his gospel. Through simply glancing at that chart, one can easily see that Luke is uniting the mission of Paul with the mission of Jesus Christ. Very interesting stuff.

The only think I have against this whole book is the layout. It could have been a lot slicker. A CD included as an extra resource would have been helpful with Charts on the Life, Letters, and Theology of Paul as well.

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