Tag Archives: Donald S. Whitney

Second Take: Praying the Bible by Donald S. Whitney

Praying the BibleWhitney, Donald S. Praying the Bible. Wheaton, IL: Crossway. 112 pages. $13.99. Purchase at Westminster Books for less or on Kindle.

Prayer is talking with God, and as Christians we have the unimaginable privilege of talking with God whenever we want to because Jesus Christ has granted us access to the Father. The Holy Spirit continually moves us to pray and grants us the assurance that our Heavenly Father wants to hear from us. As those in Christ we get to experience the joy, peace, and glory that come with prayer. We get to experience the grace of answered prayer and the wonder of seeing God work in us and around us as we communicate with him.

Yet almost every Christian struggles to consistently pray. We don’t always feel like praying, and even when we do it’s easy to bore ourselves after a few minutes, to find our mind wandering, or just not know what to say after awhile. Then we get discouraged about feeling this way, begin to wonder if God really wants to hear from us, and start to think there must be something wrong in our relationship with God. Don Whitney, Professor of Biblical Spirituality at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, wrote Praying the Bible to help Christians overcome this struggle and the guilt that comes with it.

Whitney maintains that the reason so many Christians get bored or discouraged when they pray is not because there is something wrong with them, but because there is something wrong with their method. We tend to pray the most about the most important things in our lives, such as our families, future, finances, work, Christians concerns such as our church or ministry involvement, and current crises in our lives. According to Whitney that is normal and good, we are called to pray about our lives, and our lives are made up of those things. The problem is not that we pray for the same old things, but that we pray for the same old things in the same old way. We pray the same things over and over, leaving us bored, frustrated, and feeling like there is something wrong.

The solution to praying the same prayers over and over is to instead pray through the Bible. You choose a passage of Scripture and “simply go through the passage line by line, talking to God about whatever comes to mind as you read the text” (33). If you don’t understand a particular verse, or nothing comes to mind when you read it, you simply move on to the next one. As you read the Word, you talk to God about everything and anything that comes to mind. Whitney explains that this works particularly well with the Psalms, which were designed to be prayed, but can work with any passage of Scripture.

The most helpful thing about Praying Through the Bible is that it doesn’t just explain and defend this method of prayer, but actually helps you do it. Chapter Seven is entitled “The Most Important Part of This Book.” In this chapter Whitney tells you to stop reading the book, pick up a Bible, and pray through a psalm, because this book won’t be of any help unless you actually apply its teachings to your life. The next chapter then helps you to evaluate your experience once you have actually done it. The book even ends with an appendix that explains how this method can be practiced in a group or at church.

As we begin a new year and commit to improving our lives, it’s an appropriate time to consider how we can pray better. Whitney’s method will help you do that. To anyone looking to strengthen his or her relationship with God, I recommend giving it a serious try.

Gary L. Shultz Jr. (Ph.D. The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary) is Senior Pastor of First Baptist Church in Fulton, MO. He also serves as Assistant Professor of Religion at Liberty University and Adjunct Professor of Theology and Church History at Baptist Bible Theological Seminary. He writes a monthly book review column for The Pathway and is the author of A Multi-Intentioned View of the Extent of the Atonement (Wipf & Stock).

Praying the Bible by Donald S. Whitney

Praying the BibleWhitney, Donald S. Praying the Bible. Wheaton: Crossway Books, 2015. 112 pp. $13.99. Purchase at Westminster Books for less or on Kindle.

Introduction

I have reviewed a number of books by Dr. Donald Whitney. You can read those reviews here. Specifically, you will want to read the review of Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life if you are not familiar with this foundational book to his ministry – The Center for Biblical Spirituality.

Summary

Put plainly, this book will teach you pray through the Bible.  With only 85 pages of text, he moves from the problem we encounter in prayer to the solution to the method in which we can pray. He then offers examples of praying through Psalms as well as other parts of the Bible like the epistles of Paul or the prophets.

He concludes the book with examples like George Muller, Jesus on the cross, and the Christians in the book of Acts. Two appendices offer a handy “Psalms of the Day” chart as well as some instruction on praying the Bible with a group.

Review

Having sat through his class on this topic when I attended the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, I am overjoyed that this is now in print. Like a surgeon, Whitney cuts through any and all excuses the Christian may have for not praying and shows how it is not as self-defeating as we think. Rather, he argues, it is our method.

Once he has laid that foundation, he is off to the races in sharing what he knows to be profound and true – God has given us a prayer book and we should use it. He writes with heartfelt conviction and over 30 years of experience living and praying what he preaches.

In the end, this book may take 90 minutes to read but will, if you apply the principles, radically change your life assuming you are a Christian.

Recommendation

Having experienced first hand the paradigm-shifting teachings of this book in a seminary classroom, I know the impact this book will have on Christendom. If you are a Christian and you are looking to revitalize your prayer life and have never heard about or been taught praying through the Bible, then I would recommend you pick up a copy today. Right now, even. Read it and allow the Holy Spirit to work through Don’s teaching to enable you to pray daily, regularly, and without ceasing. I can promise that if you are a believer and you apply these principles of prayer to your life, you will grow in your walk with Christ.

Finding God in Solitude by Donald S. Whitney

Finding God in SolitudeWhitney, Donald S. Finding God in Solitude: The Personal Piety of Jonathan Edwards and Its Influence on His Pastoral Ministry. New York: Peter Lang International Academic Publishers, 2014. 178 pp. $81.95. Purchase at Amazon for less.

Introduction

I have reviewed, and benefited from, a number of Dr. Whitney’s works. Jonathan Edwards was a pastor in the 18th century and is largely known for his role in the revival commonly referred to as the Great Awakening.

Summary

Divided into three chapters with an introduction and conclusion, Don explains why he wrote this book and then shows Edwards’ piety and how it influenced his pastoral ministry (chapter three) and private life (chapter two).

Chapter one is a brief sketch of the highlights of Edwards’ life and his work.  In thirty pages, the reader will have been introduced to the magnificent man who was Jonathan Edwards. Chapters two and three then begin to peel back the layers.

The second chapter looks at the personal piety of Jonathan Edwards and how he engaged in what Don calls the “personal spiritual disciplines.” These include, but are not limited to, a look at his personal prayer life, Bible intake, journaling, fasting, family worship, and even a discussion on solitude in addition to other disciplines rooted in Scripture.

The third chapter offers a look at how the personal piety of Jonathan Edwards aided his pastoral ministry. In this chapter, the reader begins to see how much work Edwards did in order to most effectively minister to his congregation and, eventually, the world.

The conclusion wraps it up and offers a number of findings and how they really apply to all of us today.

Review

This is a slightly different work than a simple biography. Whitney sought to show today’s readers what it was that made Jonathan Edwards so remarkable in his ministerial efforts. In the end, it is the hard work before God that drove Edwards to be the man he was.

I appreciated that Whitney did not give a pass on areas of concern for Edwards. In other words, he would not gloss over the shortcomings that led to his strained relationships with many in his congregation. Regardless, what was abundantly clear was that Edwards was willing to do what many were not (and sadly are not today) – spend time with God at the expense of all else.

Another aspect that Don dealt with, and one that I wish would be dealt with further is that of mysticism.  Many have labeled Edwards as a mystic without much rebuttal. Fortunately, Don enters into the discussion and concludes that he was not. He states “consistency in the practices of these disciplines were never his goal. For Edwards, spiritual disciplines were always a means – a God-given means – to experiencing the realities of a relationship with God.” In other words, Edwards was not a mystic. Rather, he was a man on a mission to worship his Creator and Savior through the means and methods prescribed and revealed to us in the Word of God, the Bible.

Recommendation

This is an expensive book no doubt (due to the necessity of its being published by an academic publisher), but if you have benefited from Jonathan Edwards’ writings, then you will undoubtedly benefit from this work. Don Whitney does an excellent job showing what made Jonathan Edwards tick. Christians and Christian pastors would do well to read this book and learn at the feet of one of the giants in the history of the church. I recommend this to all who are serious about worshiping God. Finally, you could also ask your local library, especially if your “local library” happens to be an institution of higher learning, to order a copy that way it does not cost you anything to read this magnificent book.

Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life – Revised and Updated by Donald S. Whitney

51LEp8emldL._SL250_Whitney, Donald S.  Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life – Revised and Updated.  Colorado Springs: Navpress, 1991, 2014, 342 pp.  $15.99.  Purchase at Westminster or Amazon Kindle for less.

Introduction

Though it has been awhile, Don Whitney is no stranger to Christian Book Notes.  Personally, his books have ministered deeply to my soul and are always some of the first I recommend to others.  Don recently revised and updated his first, and best-selling book (over 400,000 copies sold of the original).  Back in 2010, I collaborated with Tim Challies, Owen Strachan, Trevin Wax, and Tim Brister to compile the five books every Christian needs to read.  Don’s Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life made the list.

The study guide has been updated as well.

Summary

The book maintains the original thirteen chapters.  He begins with the reason for practicing the Spiritual Disciplines in chapter 1 and then spends 2 chapters detailing the most important discipline of Bible Intake.  The second most important discipline, that of prayer, is found in chapter 4.  After these foundational chapters, he moves into worship, evangelism, serving, stewardship, fasting, silence and solitude, fasting, journaling and learning…all for the purpose of godliness.  The final chapter looks at the importance of perseverance in the disciplines.

Review

First of all, I appreciated the first edition so much that I had called it a necessary tool-box book for every believer.  This is even more true of the revised and updated edition.  There was much added regarding source information and works referenced.  Don worked to make this a more timeless book and he succeeded.  Also, he strove to remove a number of contemporary authors that, since the publication in 1991, have delved into mysticism and, in some cases, open heresy.  In so doing, he hopefully avoids the pitfalls of a theologian or Christian pastor leaving Biblical orthodoxy later.  He did, however, add a number of quotes from modern-day giants like John Piper and D.A. Carson. In other words, most of cited sources are from that “great cloud of witnesses” that have gone before us.

Another quality to this revised and updated work is that every chapter is not only more Christocentric, but also more gospel-centered.  This stems from a year-long series of articles for TableTalk Magazine entitled “The Gospel and Spiritual Disciplines” in which Don articulated the importance of the gospel in each of the disciplines.  Furthermore, there are even more Scripture references than the original edition which shows, in part, the spiritual growth of the author himself.

Too be honest, I did not think this classic work could be made stronger, but that is exactly what Don has accomplished.

Recommendation

I cannot recommend a book more highly this one (and, yes, I have said this before).  This book has been used of the Lord to help me grow much deeper in Christ.  It is the first book I recommend to anyone talking about wanting to grow in their relationship with Christ.  It is also the book I go back to over and over to better understand where my personal relationship is faltering.  This is the book JI Packer says you must read three times and for good reason.  I personally read it at least once a year.  You should, too.

Family Worship by Dr. Donald S. Whitney

Purchase at AmazonWhitney, Donald S. Family Worship: In the Bible, in History & in Your Home. Shepherdsville: The Center for Biblical Spirituality, 2006. 64pp. $6.95. Purchase at Westminster Books or purchase at greater discounts through the ministry’s order page!

I am republishing this review in conjunction with Westminster Books now carrying it and having a sale this week (1/11-1/19).  Purchase individual copies for the lowest price ever this week only!

Introduction

I am republishing this review because Father’s Day is fast approaching.  This book makes an excellent gift to dad or the dad’s in your church.

Donald Whitney is Professor of Biblical Spirituality at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has twenty-four years of experience as a pastor in the local church. In addition to his duties at the seminary, Dr. Whitney speaks in a different church almost every weekend regarding the Spiritual Disciplines for his ministry, The Center for Biblical Spirituality. Being in a different church every weekend has shown him that the lack of Family Worship has reached epidemic proportions:

I am persuaded that so little family worship regularly exists in Christian homes, that even in most of our best churches, most of our best men do not lead their wives-and children if they have them-in family worship (p.8).

Dr. Whitney is extremely passionate about the subject of Family Worship and has devoted much of his recent studies to the subject matter. He has also taken it upon himself to publish this book as a self-publisher through his ministry The Center for Biblical Spirituality.

This is a short book that can be read in about an hour. For those who will not sit down to read can order the message by the same title here from The Center for Biblical Spirituality.

Summary of Family Worship

The first two chapters give an apologetic for Family Worship from the Bible and Church history. The third chapter shows the reader how Family Worship should be arranged with the fourth chapter answering the most common objections. The final chapter is a challenge to begin Family Worship today. Included in the book is a discussion guide for small groups.

It is important to note that nowhere does the Bible ever command family worship. However, it is implied all throughout. Dr. Whitney shows this in the worship experience of Abraham and Isaac on Mt. Moriah just to name one example.

After making a case from the Bible for Family Worship, Dr. Whitney shows how all through history (from the decades immediately preceding the New Testament to the present day) how great men of God viewed the importance of Family Worship. When your list includes Luther, Baxter, Edwards, Spurgeon, Lloyd-Jones, and Piper, you know there is some importance to Family Worship.

Perhaps the best chapter is chapter three because many husbands and fathers who want to lead in Family Worship just do not know how to do so. Some reasons may be that it was never modeled for them or they became a believer later in life (perhaps after having become a father) and therefore they have no idea what they are to do. Dr. Whitney shows just how simple it is to lead your family in worship.

Chapter four offers answers to four common objections to having family worship. He concludes the book with a challenge to the husbands to start now-there is no time like now to begin worshiping God together as a family.

Conclusion

This book gave great encouragement to me as I read through its pages. Not only does he root his argument in the Bible, as the foundation, but he builds some extremely sturdy walls with church history. Even if you just became a believer yesterday, this book will show you how you can go about leading Family Worship. If your husband is not a believer, this book will explain what to do. If you do not currently have a time of regular Family Worship, then this book is a must buy.

5 Books Every Christian Needs + A Sale

A while back I was asked about the five books that every Christian should own if they were starting a library. We had some fun with it here on Christian Book Notes as we tossed around books that we would recommend. I will be using that information to have some fun come March.

In the meantime, I talked with four other men whom I greatly admire and have been influential in my life and various ministries. I talked with Tim Challies (Tim) of Discerning Reader, Tim Brister (Timmy) of Provocations & Pantings, Owen Strachan, Instructor of Christian Theology and Church History at Boyce College, and Trevin Wax of Kingdom People.

The Rules

The rules were quite simple.  Our challenge was to come up with 5 books, and 5 books only, that every Christian must have in their library.  Even more specific, if a new believer wanted to build a library, these 5 books needed to be the foundation from which to begin.  The only other rule was that the Bible was assumed already.

The Discussion

I believe Tim said best what I was thinking, “I don’t know how we’ll ever agree on five, and only five, books.”  That being said, the Lord provided a common thought process as we hammered out which five books should be on this list.

Timmy offered the first attempt of which we wound up keeping three of them.  Not because Timmy is so brilliant, but because the five of us were thinking with one mind.  The most surprising book to be knocked off this list was John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress. Trevin though Augustine’s Confessions would be more suitable for this list than Pilgrim’s Progress. Tim, however, offered a different book that we all agreed upon the author of which was referred to as “the bomb” at one point in our discussion.

We had four of the 5 books in less than an hour through emails that included much bantering and chiding of one another!

The last book was going to be difficult as we needed to decide what genre from which this particular title must come.  After looking at the list of four, I offered one that I refer to as a “toolbox book.”  It covers a wide range of topics and is a great help to both new or old believers.

We ended up with a list of books that offer an apologetic for the Christian faith, a book that looks at the atonement and two books that offered an exposition on the character of God.  The last title to be added offers an understanding of the process of sanctification.  Our list of 5 books was now complete.

More About the List

There were some books that were discussed but ultimately left off the list due to inaccessibility to a wider range of readers or we just could not agree on it.  One of those books was Jonathan Edwards’ Religious Affections – a book we all love and enjoy but don’t feel as though everyone would feel the same way we do.

A biography did not make the list because it was just too difficult to pick one biography that would appeal to everyone.  Sadly, They Popped My Hood and Found Gravy on the Dipstick, a suggestion from one of the guys, did not make the cut, either.

While I am sure that there will be much debate (feel free!) on our list, this is the list we came to in our discussion.  These five books represent a great introduction to the Christian faith and walk.  What is more, most of the books reference so many other rich and solid books that if one were to start with these 5 books and then work from the bibliographies found therein, they will begin to amass a library rich in theology and sound doctrine that would rival that of many biblical scholars.  So, what did make the list?  Without further ado…

The 5 Books

An excellent resource introducing the essentials tenants of the Christian faith as well as a defense of the faith.

This book is great at introducing the depth of the great God we worship and serve.  Each chapter will expand your mind and knowledge of God.

This monumental work by John Stott looks at the importance of the cross and how it impacts not only the believer’s life, but the history of the entire world.  The doctrine of the atonement will become more real to you than ever.

Sproul’s work on the doctrine of God’s holiness is second to none in terms of readability and accessibility.  To read the Holiness of God is to come to the realization that your salvation has more to do with God than it does with you.

Don’s book on the Spiritual Disciplines is a wonderful toolbox to help the Christian grow in sanctification for the sake of godliness.  While you might not do everything in this book, there is enough biblical advice found within the pages, that the reader will certainly find a biblical means by which he can grow in his faith.

The Sale

Westminster Books has been so kind as to offer a sale on all of these books and a special bonus if you purchase all five.  The sale will last until 31 December 2010.

They are going to offer an additional 10% off the five books listed above.  If you purchase all 5 books, they will even offer free shipping and handling!  The specifics of the sale are listed below.

Mere Christianity: The additional 10% off is for the paperback, $8.87.
Knowing God: The additional 10 % off is for the hardcover deluxe edition only, $15.80.
The Cross of Christ: an additional 10% off, $15.20.
Holiness of God: an additional 10% off, $8.19.
Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life : an additional 10% off, $8.85.


If you purchase all five books, you will save more than $40 off the list price plus get the free shipping and handling!

To receive the discount on these books and/or the free shipping and handling, you will need to use the coupon code 5BOOKS (*note – this code is to be entered on the shopping cart screen where it reads “ENTER SPECIAL OFFER COUPON CODE”).

Even if you own most or all of these books, this offer allows you to buy multiple copies for your friends and family or even your pastor in time for Christmas.

Spiritual Disciplines Within the Church by Donald S. Whitney

Purchase at AmazonWhitney, Donald S.  Spiritual Disciplines Within the Church.  Chicago:  Moody Publishers, 1996.  216 pp.  $14.99.  Purchase at Amazon.

Introduction

Don Whitney is president of The Center for Biblical Spirituality and also serves as the Associate Professor of Biblical Spirituality at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, and as Senior Associate Dean in the School of Theology. Before becoming a professor, he had pastored for more than 24 years and though he does not currently serve as a pastor, he still teaches and preaches most every Sunday in various churches across the country.  He also enjoys (not too sure that is a strong enough word) repairing and using vintage fountain pens.

Summary

Whereas The Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life is concerned with personal spirituality from a biblical perspective, Spiritual Disciplines Within the Church (SDWTC) is concerned about corporate spirituality from a biblical perspective.

He writes in his introduction that he wants to invite people to enjoy the church as it declares the glory of Christ. He also wants to see the church pull away from the consumerism that has controlled her in recent decades. In twelve chapters, Whitney details twelve disciplines that should be found in the church body. Some of these are individual by necessity (researching the church) while most are meant to be done at a corporate level. The list of the disciplines found in the church include:

  • going to church–obedience to Hebrews 10:15
  • seeking baptism–a public display of faith is tantamount to a wedding ceremony (Eph. 5:31-32)
  • joining a church–there is a measure of accountability in doing this (Mt. 18:15-17; 1 Cor. 5)
  • listen to preaching–God’s chosen means to spread the gospel (Romans 10:14-17)
  • worshiping with the church— Heb. 10:25 applies here
  • witnessing–corporate witness is stronger than individual witness
  • serving in the church–Jesus modeled a servants attitude, so should we (Mk. 10:45)
  • giving to the church–Paul discusses sacrificial giving for the poor and the ministers often in his letters
  • attending the ordinances–Both the Lord’s Supper and baptism were meant to be public in the church
  • fellowship with the church–this is modeled in Acts 2:42
  • praying with the church–corporate prayer allows for the church to join together in unity to pray
  • learning with the church–1 Tim 3:15 explains that the church is the pillar of truth
  • researching the church–You need to know what the church believes and does before joining

This is not meant to be an exhaustive list of Spiritual Disciplines found in a church, but each chapter details why it is important to seek these various disciplines.  There is a study guide available for download as well.

Review/Recommendation

What I most appreciate about the book is that Whitney seeks to root each of these disciplines in solidly in Scripture.  He writes of these disciplines with a humble heart and the mind of one who has pastored for over 24 years.  While these disciplines may not be directly commanded by God in His Word, though all can be found either by command, implication or in principle in Scripture. Based on those, Whitney shows that a healthy church will be involved in all of these at some level.

When I served as an associate pastor, pastor of youth, I took my students through both of Don’s Spiritual Disciplines books to show them methods by which they could walk closer with God.  Four years later, I have talked with some of those students and have been told that these disciplines have impacted their lives and have helped them find biblically sound churches as they have moved around with college and such.  More importantly, using these disciplines has helped them to avoid some negative church situations while looking for a local congregation to join in worship.

I would recommend SDWTC to any minister wanting to cultivate a love for the local body of believers, Christ’s bride, in the congregation that the Lord has made him the undershepherd.  Unfortunately, in this day of watered-down spirituality, the glory of God found in corporate Spiritual Disciplines has been lost on many.  I pray that through Whitney’s book, this glory might be revealed once again in churches across the land.

10 Questions to Diagnose Your Spiritual Health by Donald S. Whitney

Whitney, Donald S. Ten Questions to Diagnose your Spiritual Health. NavPress, 2001. 144 pp. $12.99. Purchase at Amazon.

Introduction

Rather than writing an introduction to Ten Questions, I figure on letting the author himself introduce the book.

Review

Whitney begins the book with a call and a prayer for growth in Christ, “So whatever the present state of you spiritual health or the rate of you spiritual growth, let’s begin by ‘looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith’ (Hebrews 12:2), and ‘press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus’ (Phillipians 3:14). May the Lord be pleased to use this little volume to help you ‘grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen’ (2 Peter 3:18)” (page 14).

Like an experienced surgeon, Dr. Whitney asks 10 questions, which comprise the 10 chapters in the book. These questions cut through the religious rhetoric of today to help the reader get right to the heart of the matter. With questions like these, one is either forced to take a long, hard look at his or her walk with Christ, or lie completely and pretend that all is well. The questions are:

  1. Do you thirst for God?
  2. Are you governed increasingly by God’s Word?
  3. Are you more loving?
  4. Are you more senstive to God’s presence?
  5. Do you have a growing concer for the spiritual and temporal needs of others?
  6. Do you delight in the bride of Christ?
  7. Are the spiritual disciplines increasingly important to you?
  8. Do you still grieve over sin?
  9. Are you a quicker forgiver?
  10. Do you yearn for heaven and to be with Jesus?

In each chapter, Dr. Whitney shows through Scripture, the lives of saints from years gone by (Edwards, Lloyd-Jones, and Brainerd) as well as those of today (Packer, Erickson-Tada, Sproul), that one must be at some point growing (and have grown) in a particular area. He then goes on in each chapter to give practical examples and questions to diagnose whether or not you have experienced growth in the area.

His words are both convicting and reassuring at the same time. They are convicting because you are shown through the examples of others how little you value your growth as a Christian in each area. For example, I found myself to be deficient with the topic of the 4th chapter–being more sensitive to God’s presence. “But how often are you aware of the presence of God? If we take the teaching of the Bible seriously, perception of the presence of God should not be an occasional experience” (page 56). And while I can say that I am definitely more sensitive to His presence, I see that I am so lacking in sensitivity that I must strive for more. I must pray to God and ask for more sensitivity.

That is only one example of many that I could share. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who has ever doubted or is doubting or will doubt whether they are growing in Christ. It is nice to be convicted of a defect while at the same time be reassured that even where you are defective there is evidence of growth that only God can give.

I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.” –1 Corinthians 4:5

Recommendation

Ten Questions is an excellent resource for any Christian looking for a “spiritual checkup.” Your answers to the questions will provide an excellent gauge as to where you are on your journey. It would be an excellent resource for a group study in Sunday School or in discipleship groups.

Don Whitney–Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life (audio book)

Don Whitney Audio Book CoverDr. Don Whitney’s book Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life is available for the first time in audio book format. Dr. Whitney is the Associate Professor of Biblical Spirituality (2005) and Senior Associate Dean of the School of Theology as well as the president of The Center for Biblical Spirituality.

The book is read by Grover Gardner and is available as an MP3 download at ChristianAudio.com. If you would like to purchase the audio cd, you can purchase it at the Westminster Book Store or ChristianAudio.com, or if you would like to support Dr. Whitney’s ministry directly, you can purchase it from The Center for Biblical Spirituality.

Dr. Whitney Reviews Two Best Sellers on New Age Christianity

Chances are you have heard of The Secret by Rhonda Byrne or A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. Both of these books have garnered much attention when Oprah Winfrey showcased them on her daily program. These books are nothing less than heresy but are being studied by Christians and churches as a new way in which to view the Bible and Christianity.

About The Secret, Dr. Whitney says, “So as with nearly all false teaching, the flaws of The Secret are most visible when you examine what it has to say about the Bible and Jesus.”

About A New Earth, he says

Tolle declares that “a new heaven and a new earth” are “the awakened consciousness, . . . not a future state to be achieved.” He’s sure that these “are arising within you at this moment” (p. 308). He believes you can achieve these with a self-centered, self-sufficient awakening based upon his teaching. You do not need Christ, the Bible, or the church for this. Do not think of death, judgment, and eternity. You are god. Just live in the “Now.”

Check out his review for The Secret and his review of A New Earth. While there, listen to Dr. Whitney’s recent interview (there is a transcript as well when you click on the link) on Nancy Leigh DeMoss’ radio ministry Revive Our Hearts with Dr. Erwin Lutzer.