D. A. Carson. Basics for Believers: The Core of Christian Faith and Life. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1996, 2018. 157 pp.
Balance in Christian training can be tough. Some books or sermon series can take up a great deal of one’s time without imparting anything beyond the simplest of truths. Other writings can go so deep into minutia that they discourage readers and offer next-to-nothing for our daily lives. Teachers and authors who have the gift of true teaching, a gift that both shares information and promotes transformation, they are a treasure to the church.
One such teacher and treasure to the church is D. A. Carson. Carson’s book Basics for Believers is an excellent example of teaching that is both easy-to-understand and certainly not shallow. Carson has a way of writing that is clear and helpful even as he opens our eyes to important truths from the word of God.
Basics for Believers is a book that arose from a series of 4 sermons that Carson preached through the book of Philippians. Carson’s messages have been adapted to make five chapters of helpful and enjoyable reading. This book walks verse-by-verse through Philippians. Carson is not here writing a scholarly commentary. Nor is he simply summarizing the text. But, as a good preacher would try from the pulpit, Carson is working to communicate important truths to believers in ways that will encourage, convict, and change them.
I would recommend the use of this book in a couple of ways. Basics for Believers would be a fine read for any growing Christian. This work would also be a helpful resource for a Sunday School teacher or group leader wanting to walk a group through Philippians. I believe that anyone who reads this book will walk away with an appreciation for the grace of God and a challenge to live to his glory in all things.
** Note: I received a free copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing an honest review.