Posts Tagged ‘Christian audio’

Evaluating Free Christian Book Offers

August 28, 2019 1 comment

Occasionally I have mentioned free online resources, and here are some good ones for monthly offers: a free e-book or audio book each month

  • Christian Audio
  • Logos — this month’s offer (August 2019) is “God’s Kingdom through God’s Covenants:  A Concise Biblical Theology,” an abridgement of Gentry and Wellum’s Kingdom through Covenant
  • Faithlife Ebooks — The current offer is Name Above all Names, by Alistair Begg & Sinclair Ferguson

Some book selections are better than others, with some not worth reading, but overall these collections provide many choices for different types of reading—and to ‘fill-in’ some of the categories in the Challies Reading Challenge, such as books “targeted at the opposite gender” or a book “you think you may disagree with.”

These ebooks and audio files usually sit in my account library settings until I get around to them (and some I’ll probably never read, as not worth reading), yet my recent reading has included several of these titles, such as ChristianAudio’s Reset, by David Murray, and Liturgy of the Ordinary (a title I do NOT recommend reading), and a past free monthly book from Logos, James Montgomery Boice’s Commentary on the Psalms volume 1 (Psalms 1-41).  This commentary is very insightful at several points, though again as with all commentaries some parts are better than others; the commentary on Psalm 19 is rather disappointing; he held to the Old Earth views of secular science, assuming these as truth from the so-called experts, thus showing his lack of understanding about presuppositions.

Some other past free offers from the last few years have been good selections, such as Sinclair Ferguson’s The Whole Christ, books by or about Jonathan Edwards, 12 Ways Your Phone is Changing You, and Kevin DeYoung’s Taking God at His Word.

As with every possible book freebie, it helps to first check out the reader reviews at Amazon or Goodreads, especially when the author is unknown or the title doesn’t describe all you want to know about ‘what this book is about’. monthly offers are often decent Reformed/Calvinistic titles, and Logos’ offerings are sometimes by Reformed authors (such as the current August 2019 free book), but many other times the books are from Roman Catholicism or liberal, non-Reformed/non-evangelical viewpoints.

One of the free audio books I read, as a title that sounded interesting and not too long to read (less than 5 hours), turned out as something quite different (as has been noted in the critical reviews at Amazon and Goodreads):  Liturgy of the Ordinary, written by a woman Anglican priest and filled with a lot of Roman Catholic / liberal Anglican ideas about “the importance” of having incense, candles, and other things for the senses as “aids” to our worship.  The reading was beneficial for the overall purpose of reading outside of one’s “comfort zone” and expanding one’s reading to things that differ from our own beliefs and worldview, as something to think about, to be able to articulate why I/you believe what we believe and why this other idea is wrong.  Yet even 4+ hours of an audio book with such content was difficult to keep listening to, to actually complete it; the point of reading and being exposed to the opposing view really should not require even that much time—to reach a point of “enough” and move on to better reading material.

Another month is nearing an end, and I look forward to the next set of monthly free offers from these three sites.  Perhaps September will have some good titles to add to my reading list—or, then again, perhaps a mixture of good and not-so-good or nothing; the next month will always come, with the possibility of a few more good titles.