Christian Graces: God’s Blueprint For The Development Of Complete Christians, by Adam Cozort
[Note: This book was provided free of charge by Book Crash. All thoughts and opinions are my own.]
Some months ago I originally requested this book to read and did not receive it, and it was only later on, when I re-requested the book, that I finally got to read it. Was it worth the wait? Absolutely. As far as Christian books are concerned, this book is squarely on the camp of practical Christianity books that do a good job at pointing out the biblical view of a given topic  without getting lost in the thickets of theological speculation. No word in this book is wasted, and it is straightforwardly focused on encouraging believers to be mature and complete Christians developing the virtues discussed in 2 Peter 1:5-7. The author writes in such a way that it provides encouragement to those who seek to live according to the Bible–although the author does focus mainly on the epistles of Paul and not the whole standard of godliness as discussed in scripture–rather than getting bogged down as so many books do in trying to define who Christians are.
In terms of its contents, this book is rather unsurprisingly straightforward in its approach in its 65-page length. After a brief introduction, the author begins by discussing diligence and how believers are to live a diligent life. This chapter introduces the pattern of the book as a whole by containing key words given in Greek (without transliteration) defined through a variety of Bible helps and shown in other scriptures, with the chapter ending with some discussion questions for the reader to answer. Later chapters follow this same pattern as the author discusses the various graces that Peter discussed one by one: faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, and charity. In discussing these points he brings up not only the biblical context but also some notes as to the Greek language as a whole and how it is translated in English versions of the Bible, a surprisingly academic twist to such a practical book. At any rate, this book presents high ethical demands and the author gets the all-important point that believers are to begin to resemble God the Father and Jesus Christ in their character and nature, with the implication that mankind is to become the children of God after the God-kind and overcome our corrupt and fallen human nature.
This book sits in a comfortable niche that likely demonstrates that there is a great deal more that this author has to offer in terms of books about biblical subjects. The book is short enough to make an easy read as well as a suitable aid to one’s personal Bible study, and could even be used in a group Bible Study session where participants answer the discussion questions with others. Additionally, the book not only gives a high-minded and heavily biblical look at the sort of character that Christians are to develop, but also is written with enough intellect that the book could easily encourage the reader to take a look at deeper theological questions that the author does not discuss in this book. Presumably, if he wanted, the author could explore the question of the imago Dei in other works that are focused more on theology, as it is unclear whether the author’s focus on practical Christianity is something that marks his entire body of work or is something that changes from volume to volume based on the material and the approach that works best for it. At any rate, though, this is a book to appreciate and apply.
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