I’ve finally completed a review of Steve Arterburn & Fred Stoeker’s book, Every Man’s Battle. This book has been out for a while; it was first published in 2000, with a study guide coming in 2002. Since that time, various editions have been put out by Multnomah. This is a re-release from WaterBrook, a subdivision of Multnomah/Random House that has the study guide included with the book.
I find that this book hits a nerve with men:the temptation and lure of sexual sin. How can I battle against such a strong foe? How can I be free from the bondage to this sin? It’s very relevant, given the number of men within the church who struggle with some type of sexual addiction, but especially that to pornography.
While the books does have its good points and parts, I think it really misses the mark. “Bouncing the eyes” is the main solution the authors have to offer–in other words, when you see something suggestive that tempts you, bounce your eyes somewhere else. Not bad, but with the all-pervasive sphere of our visual culture, I’m just not sure this is going to work at all. Besides, I had an Old Testament prof in college who told of how the Pharisees would do this, literally, whenever they saw a woman, suggestively clothed or not. They would literally turn toward a wall (he would jokingly add that was why so many of them had such large noses, from breaking them by running into walls all the time). What this becomes is just another law that slays us.
The authors talk about the cross only minimally and when they do, they seem to assume that the reader is familiar with the cross, Christ’s work upon the cross on your behalf and the power it brings to bear upon your life in Christ. I think this is a dangerous assumption.
You can hear more details about my review by viewing the video book review I’ve just posted over at Random Thoughts From a Cluttered Mind.
Go easy on me; this is my first video review!
Category: Book Reviews & Summaries, Family & Marriage
I’m a sinner saved by grace. I’m simultaneously justified and a sinner. I’ve been called by God’s grace to be a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I’m joyfully the husband of one wife and the father of three children.
I was born in central Iowa, raised in a godly home with two first generation Christian parents. The Evangelical Free Church of Madrid, Iowa was where I heard the teaching of the Word of God all my “growing up” years. There were some of the most dear and faithful servants of our Lord serving there, who will never be known around the world, but will hear (or, as is the case for some already, have heard) their Lord say, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into your rest.”
When I was between the ages of 12 & 13, I attended Bible camp at Twin Lakes in northwest Iowa. Pastor Don Stover (another of those saints who has entered God’s rest) was telling us the story of Pilgrim’s Progress using blacklight flannel graph (really cool high-tech in 1970!). When Christian gets to the foot of the cross and his burden of sin rolls away into the empty tomb, God had me. I was gloriously converted to Jesus Christ, my Savior.
God’s call to the ministry was a long, gradual process through which He used many people to lead me and confirm within me His will to be a minister. He also used one or two key people to bring me to the doctrines of grace. I had been in ministry for about 6 years when the light of these truths were shown so brightly to me. I trust that I have grown in my understanding of them and have caused others to rejoice in the absolute free sovereign grace of our God.
I have been married for 29 years and have three children. I have earned a B.A. from Trinity College (now Trinity International University) in Biblical Studies, and later earned a MDiv from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, have served four Evangelical Free churches since 1986, and am currently the Senior Pastor of Cornerstone Evangelical Free Church in Rochester, MN since 1997.