Thursday, October 04, 2007

3:16 The Numbers of Hope, a review

The request came and I wrote back with a definite... YES! Max... I'll review a book by Max anytime and anywhere. Max Lucado is the Cracker Barrel of the author world! Huh? Well, you see... I am not a great traveler as mentioned before.

When my family has been on the road, I need a place for meals that I know always has good food, lovely interiors, clean forks and spoons, and a cute little gift shop never hurts... Cracker Barrel... I know what to expect.

Isn't that boring? No... is it boring when you purchase a Snicker bar over and over? Is Starbucks boring even though there are a gajillion of them in the towns close to me? Never...

Max paints word pictures like no other author I've ever read. (I was listening to a sermon by Chuck Swindoll on the car radio a couple years ago when I turned to my son and sighed, stating that Chuck S. was the Max Lucado of the spoken word... a high compliment.) He didn't disappoint in this book which takes John 3:16 and makes 12 Chapters, a Conclusion, and a small 40 day Devotional out of one verse.

John 3:16 is the plumb line of the New Testament Church. It is the nuclear core on which all our theology has its' basis. Do you believe God sent his Son to pay the price for us to have eternal life? Doesn't get much more basic than that. Yet, Max Lucado writes in such a way (as usual) that the profound meets simplicity and leads us to a deeper understanding of the work of Christ on the cross.

Just listen to a few chapter titles: The Most Famous Conversation in the Bible, Hope for the Hard Heart, When You Get Booted Out, Heaven's "Whoever" Policy, What Makes Heaven Heavenly... just to name a few.

If the last book I reviewed took awhile to read because it had so much "meat of the Word" in it that I needed to ponder a lot, this book is the bread on the side. It is nutritious, wholesome, but easy to digest.

I was asked for a book recommendation a few years ago by a friend who wanted to give a relative a book about the Faith that was Biblically sound but not to deep, one that would be easy to read. I recommended Max without having to think twice. While there rarely is a book where thinking Christians would agree with absolutely everything, I've never read a book by Lucado that would cause me to wince as I read a paragraph and wonder what Bible he was reading. His main audience is not Bible scholars needing to break down the verses in the original Greek. However, his writings just may send the average person into the Word for further study. :)

If you have been waiting for a book to hand to a friend about the Faith, or send to your sister so perhaps she'll understand why Jesus is the source of your strength... a book that gives exactly what 3:16 means within the context of scripture and stories... here is the book for which you have been waiting. Good stuff...


Anonymous said...

Dear Breanda;

During my christian walk, I have read many books and listened to many sermons, but I have to agree with you on this one. Max Lucado is definately an author that is annointed with the Spirit. When you read his books, it feels as he is sitting next to you with a cup of coffee and chatting away.
I came across Chuck Swindoll as I was flipping thru the channels on the radio. His style of preaching is straight forward, with no water down theology. I thank the Lord for these two gentlemen. Thank you for sharing. And yes, I do believe in 3:16. Blessings, Maria

Anonymous said...

Brenda; sorry about the typo on your name :), I was typing so fast that I forgot to go back and fix. Maria

Vee said...

Love Max Lucado, too. He has beautiful phrasing that is easy to read and easy to remember. I own a number of his books and I'll be sure to add this one as well. No better news than John 3:16!

Mary Isabella said...

Max Lucado is one of my favorities. It is the blessings of John 3:16 that gets us through this life. Blessings Mary

Anonymous said...

When I was first diagnosed with a chronic illness several years ago, I was having terrible brain fog and depression. My faith was sorely tested.
An offer came in the mail for a Christian book club. I had never read Max Lucado before, but I chose 4 of his books.
They were just what I needed. Easy to read and understand. A gentle reminder that God was there, that He was with me, that He had never left me, that I was deeply loved.
I can't remember the titles now but I'll never forget the gentle writing of Max Lucado. God used him at the lowest time of my life and I will always have a special place for him in my heart. :)

KarenHarveyCox said...

Dear Brenda,
Max Lucado is one of my favorite Christian writers. I love it too that my husband also loves his writing style. I will certainly look for this book in our nearby Christian bookstore. I am loving your blog more and more everytime I visit.
Blessings, Karen

Tealady Tammy said...

I love Max Lucado. He is one of my favorite reads. Thanks for your wonderful review. come on over for tea and see what reward I have left for your blog.
have a blessed weekend

Shelly @ thePINKbarn said...

Thank you for the book review! I, too, LOVE Max Lucado's writings. I am happy to have stumbled across your blog today....will be back soon!