Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Review of Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney

Author: Donald Whitney

Pages: 266 pages

Publisher: NavPress

Price: 15.99

Genre: Christian Living

Quick Summary:

I have had the privilege to sit under the teaching of Dr. Whitney in seminary. I jokingly tell people that he “wrote the book on Spiritual Disciplines”. I am actually only partially joking; this is perhaps the best and most God-centered book on the spiritual disciplines. The back cover sums up the book well, “by illustrating why the disciplines are important, showing how each one will help you grow in godliness, and offering practical suggestions for cultivating them on a long-term basis, [this book] will provide you with a refreshing opportunity to embrace life’s greatest pursuit—the pursuit of holiness—through a lifelong delight in the Disciplines”.

What I Liked:

This book is different from many other books on the Spiritual Disciplines. This book is different because it flows from a deep gospel center. Dr. Whitney truly believes that enjoyment is found in Christ alone. The disciplines are simply ways for us to experience more of Jesus and thereby experience more joy.

Sometimes when you read books on the spiritual disciplines you come away from each chapter feeling as if you have little oxygen and now you are being called upon to climb Mt. Everest. After leaving each chapter of this book you feel as if you have been supplied with an endless supply of oxygen and Mt. Everest looks like a climbable hill. This is the case because each chapter is gospel-saturated. Whitney writes in a compelling fashion and draws from the depths of the rich heritage left before us.

What I Disliked:

There are some places in this book that need updated. A second edition would be phenomenal. After sitting in his class I know that Dr. Whitney has much more for us to learn about the spiritual disciplines than what is included in this book. I wish that every lecture was made available for you free online. I think Dr. Whitney teaches better than he writes. This is not to say that this book is not compelling and a great read, it is to say that he is a phenomenal teacher. (By the way I’ve already received my grade for the class).

Should You Buy It?

Yes. It’s a pretty easy read and I believe God will use it to change your life. Even if you only read the chapter on praying through the Scriptures your walk with Christ will deepen.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

1 comment:

  1. This book is rated 4.5 but is in the 3.5 section...I was gonna tear into you for putting it in the 3.5 section but now that I see the actual rating I will only suggest a correction. :)



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