Spiritual Birthline: Understanding How We Experience the New Birth

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Crossway, 2006 - 171 من الصفحات
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"American evangelicals often throw around the phrase 'born again' with little thought as to what it means. Some might mean a person who has prayed the 'sinner's prayer.' Others may refer to someone who has been baptized. What does it mean to be born again? Pastor Stephen Smallman addresses this question and what it means for faith and evangelism in his new book, Spiritual Birthline. Pastor Smallman's book is based on a fundamental analogy between physical and spiritual birth rooted in Jesus' teaching on being 'born again' found in John 3:1-8. Building on this teaching, the author draws parallels between pregnancy and effectual calling, delivery and conversion, and growth and sanctification. As he explains these concepts, Pastor Smallman relates them to biblical teaching and real life stories of new birth. The book is divided into two parts. The first begins with a study on Jesus' meeting with Nicodemus, then unfolds the concept of the spiritual birthline through our personal testimonies and then through our communities. The second part is devoted to application, dealing with how we can aid in the new birth of other people. Pastor Smallman calls this role the 'spiritual midwife, ' and after explaining the role he applies it to each step in the birthline. He ends with a chapter on new birth for children born into Christian families and a brief chapter on the importance of living a Christ-like life. At the end of the book is a list of recommended books for further reading and an appendix for adapting the book to a group study. Though the analogy between physical and spiritual birth is not new (Jesus gave us that one), the material in Spiritual Birthline expands on it in profound and useful ways. Describing the process of conversion and coming to faith is not an easy task, but Pastor Smallman does so with meaningful understanding. The chapter on children who are born into Christian families was my favorite- partly because it describes me, but also because it describes so many people who are not often addressed. Spiritual Birthline is an immensely practical and thoughtful book that I recommend without reservation"--Amazon.com.

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Chapter 1
Back Cover
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