Friday, July 11, 2014


STARTING AT THE FINISH LINE has a subtitle; The Gospel Of Grace For Mormons.  John B. Wallace as an active member of the LDS church for two decades, but in the last twenty years has come to see the beauty of simply being a follower of Jesus Christ.  So John’s heart is definitely focused on reaching those inside the walls of the LDS church, redeeming the time that he spent “inside” the organization.

However, the message of John’s book is a jumping off point for conversations with ANYONE who is not yet a follower of Jesus Christ.  It is primarily for this reason that I was so drawn to this book for review in the first place; folks, who doesn’t need the Gospel of Grace?

The author’s passion for the truth begins with the foundation of Christianity – the Word of God – over and against The Book of Mormon. And he makes no apologies.  One quote I feel is necessary to establish John B. Wallace’s primary focus:
“My job is to invite you, the Latter-day Saint, to research all available evidence and come to your own conclusion that the Bible has been not only translated correctly but also transmitted down through the centuries with an astonishing degree of accuracy.  Once you are convinced of this, my preference is that you set this comparatively insignificant book down and immerse yourself in the Bible . . . When you do this, you will discover that the Bible is all about the cross of Jesus.”

Having laid the proper foundation, John B. Wallace follows this line of reasoning through a searching examination of the cross, a defense of salvation by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and the eternal security of the believer.  He makes his case for “works” by placing them in their appropriate context – these are acts that we are able to perform as a result of our salvation, not in order to attain it, and they are of inestimable value to the new believer, as well as to others, as evidence of the New Birth.

With references to the Book of Mormon, and to Mormon doctrine (which the author explains to a degree for the non-Mormon reader), this book does have a target audience.  However, the principles that John B. Wallace elucidates in STARTING AT THE FINISH LINE make this a primer for anyone who is actively seeking an opportunity to share the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ with anyone.

I love books that provide room for notes!  STARTING AT THE FINISH LINE provides oversized margins, as well as 5 blank pages at the end of the book, that you can fill with your personal thoughts and reactions to the book.
5 stars for a passionate defense of the truth by John B. Wallace

John B. Wallace
ISBN  978-0-9914622-0-9
Religion / General
Pomona House Publishing
202 pages
$ 14.99 (U.S.)

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The Advocate by Randy Singer

Luke, a Greek physician, Christian, and companion of the Apostle Paul, compiled the first 2-volume history of the Christian church.  We know them, respectively, as The Gospel Of Luke and The Book Of Acts.  You can find them in the New Testament portion of the Bible.

These books were each addressed to an enigmatic personage, Theophilus.  Whether Theophilus was an historical figure, or whether this was a play on words (Theophilus literally means, “Lover of God”) is still being debated.  Acclaimed author Randy Singer has taken the character of Theophilus and crafted an excellent book that centers around this young man’s training and subsequent career as a lawyer in the courts of Rome during the time of Christ.

As assessore for Pontius Pilate, Theophilus has a ring-side seat as the greatest story ever told unfolds before his very eyes.  He is the one who suggested that Pilate offer the release of Barabbas, certain that the crowd would release the innocent man, Jesus, instead.

The plan backfired, and Theophilus would forever live with the thought that he was instrumental in the death of an innocent man.

Many years, and two Caesars later, Theophilus is once again tasked with the defense of an innocent man, the Apostle Paul.  However, with age comes wisdom, and this time
Theophilus can no longer be a disinterested bystander.  It’s not just Paul’s life that hangs in the balance.

Rich with historical and cultural detail, and passionate with the mental, emotional, and philosophical forces of the day, The Advocate is a book that will help you understand the context of Christianity, and cause you to re-examine your own beliefs concerning the Jesus of history. 

Reviewer’s disclaimer:  Randy Singer pulls no punches.  There are scenes that may be considered too graphic for the younger reader.

5 stars for life-changing fiction by Randy Singer

The Advocate
Randy Singer
Fiction / Christian / Historical
Tyndale Fiction
473 pages
$24.99 U.S. (hardback, jacketed copy)