Saturday, 25 November 2017

Cosy Christmas Evening

Our annual Christmas evening is usually a cosy affair - much more pleasant than most Christmas shopping experiences! Homemade mincepies & cakes, steaming mugs of hot drinks, relaxing background music, friends and chat... you get the idea. Oh, and of course, there are the book deals! We're excited to be offering 'Wonders of Creation', the new coffee table book from Day One, at a 'you-won't-find-this-cheaper-anywhere' price, plus Helen Roseveare's new 'Count it all Joy' alongside a 3 for 2 on children's books. We've even sneaked in a few Martin Luther's - yes, we couldn't resist the Playmobil Martin Luther figure, so we have a few 'lil Luther's in the shop for you to pick up as stocking fillers!
We look forward to seeing you on Monday 27th, or if you really can't make it but you don't want to miss out on one of the offers, just give us a call to make your order (we draw the line at sending out mincepies though 🙂).

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

The Sweet Taste of Providence

Christine Farenhorst is a master storyteller, always engaging and finding new ways of pressing a message home. This book of 74 short stories from history is no different. Not all the stories are about Christians, some are about obscure and little known places and people but all are thoughtfully told so that the reader is drawn to consider and clearly see God's providential workings.  Each short chapter begins with a scripture passage and ends with well crafted 'Food for thought' questions. These are not trite, repetitive questions but at times real mind benders!
For example, in one chapter where we read about the man whose technical skills developed the techniques that led to the creation of the Gutenberg Press - the printing press that began the mass printing of Bibles. The gentleman himself was not thought to be a Christian, and he died friendless and penniless, but what wonderful good has come from the development of his techniques! In this chapter, one of the 'food for thought' points is... 'We live in an age where technology has advanced much beyond Gutenberg.  How can we be accountable and use this technology to God's glory and honour and to the advance of his kingdom?'.
I think this book really fills a gap in the market for devotionals for teenagers. It could be used as a daily reading or adapted for group discussions, but however it is used it will provoke careful analysis of the situations that face us in our daily lives and will cause the reader to consider our sovereign God who has all times, situations, people and places in his hands for the furtherance of the gospel and his glory.
The Sweet Taste of Providence - 74 Devotional Episodes from History, by Christine Farenhorst, published by Joshua Press.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Battle of Seattle - A Review

This book is classic Douglas Bond - a fast paced thriller with a Christian undertone.  The characters are beautifully developed, so that their emotions can be shared with the reader.  They feel the fear of battle, the painfulness of loss and the toughness of finding courage when there is none.
The story centres around William Tidd, an orphan who cares for his sister, with the help of his friends Noclas and the Indian, Charlie Salitat.  As war breaks out between white settlers and Indians, he joins the Washington Territorial Militia tasked with defending Washington Territory and finding the Indian chief Leschi.  William Tidd becomes an express rider with his beloved horse, Prophet, and fights through skirmishes, raids and battles, culminating with the Battle of Seattle.
This is a compelling novel and an amazing addition to the 'Heroes & History' series.  I recommend the book highly, even if you do not have much prior knowledge about the Pacific Northwest, as none is needed.

'Battle of Seattle' by Douglas Bond is published by P & R Publishing in paperback, £8.99.

Review contributed by a teenage reader

Thursday, 14 September 2017

The First London Confession of Faith

We seem indebted to US publishers for so many valuable reprints these days. Particular Baptist Press have brought out a quality edition of a much neglected early Baptist Confession. Lumpkin thought it the Confession that had the greatest 'formative ... influence on Baptist life.' It was first issued in 1644. Then, when some degree of toleration was experienced by nonconformists, it was revised and reprinted in 1646, together with an Appendix by Benjamin Cox to clarify some points of doctrine which had been questioned by opponents. Seven Baptist churches in London came together to produce it, probably to distance themselves from continental Anabaptists and to assure the authorities of their peacefulness and morality. I'm not sure that Michael Haykin's view expressed in the historical introduction that it was written to 'demonstrate once and for all their fundamental solidarity with the international Calvinist community' is quite true. The later Baptist Confession of 1689 smacks more of that: it falls much more into line with the Westminster Confession. But in 1644 conditions were more precarious for Baptists. The Civil War was on, but neither side could be looked to for granting liberty of conscience. There were many amongst the Parliamentarians who were as intolerant of them as the King was. So this Confession is a brave, unflinching declaration of faith, having the feel of something forged in the fires of persecution - a kind of 'here I stand, I can do no other' type of Confession. It is notable for its conciseness, its Christ-centredness, and its grasp of the New Testament doctrine of the Church and the life of the believer.
A facsimile of the original title page is included in this edition. It looks back to the past with affection, but is also intended to be of practical use today, and modern formatting facilitates that.
'The First London Confession of Faith 1646 Edition' is published by Particular Baptist Press in paperback. Our price is just £3.50.

Tuesday, 8 August 2017

God's Design

A Bible-believing Christian life can be a difficult one in this day and age.  Persecution in the western world is subtle but intentional.  Children are taught a liberal set of 'British values' in schools and God's good design for family and relationships completely disregarded, in fact actively spoken against throughout the media and society as a whole.  There are many good Christian books recently published on the current hot topics and issues that we face surrounding gender, sexuality and relationships.  I mention just one here as it stands alone in being aimed at younger children.  In the excellent 'Making Him Known' series for children around the ages of 7-12, this particular title 'God's Design' is specifically aimed at teaching younger children about God's good design for men and women.  It begins with God's great and unique creation of men and women and the Biblical differences between them.  We read of man's rebellion against God's design in the garden of Eden and how this has distorted roles and relationships since.  We hear of Jesus the perfect man, and other examples of good men and women in the Bible.  We are taught the necessity of keeping our minds and bodies pure and then of the gifts of marriage, companionship and children.
When children are just too young to be directly taught on homosexuality, transgenderism and gender fluidity this is a really helpful book to use as a starting point for discussing the Biblical differences between men and women and God's plan for families and relationships (whether single or married).  What a wonderful design God's design is!

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Summer Reading Challenge

Our annual Summer Reading Challenge is back! This is a great opportunity to encourage your children to read throughout the summer season with discounted books and fun crafts & activities...

Take a look at the books available and get in touch to order your first one at 25% off the full price!
see more details about each book online...
If you live locally to us then please join us on our official launch morning... 
Wednesday 26th July, 10:30am
when we will be running children's crafts and activities.

The Small Print: Books must be chosen from the selection above. All books available while stocks last. Age categories are flexible. Reviews must be received before subsequent books are despatched. Normal carriage rates apply.
Challenge finishes on Thursday 31st August.

Friday, 16 June 2017

Luther in Love

It might sound a rather frivolous title, but don't be fooled - this is a book with serious historical substance. The life of Martin Luther has been much chronicled over the years, but Douglas Bond has taken it and put a new slant upon it in the best traditions of historical fiction. He shows us the man and his times through the eyes of his wife Katharina von Bora. This brings their relationship and their home life before us - the ex-monk and the ex-nun in the former monastery at Wittenberg. It was a busy, almost chaotic place, what with all the students that boarded with them. Here Luther held court with his famous tabletalk, played the lute and composed hymns, and brought up his children. Here the practical and human side of his Reformation theology was worked out. We see Luther warts and all - by turns explosive, tender, witty, depressive. We admire his industry, his literary output, his devotion to scripture and his courage, but the author also takes care that we see that the best of men are but men at best. Careful research into Luther's books, sermons and letters has furnished him with material to weave into the dialogue and give credibility to the story, and in this Douglas Bond has once again done a magnificent job. This is not action packed fiction, but the tale of the drama of those times of God-wrought change, and the depiction of the clash of ideas, together with a portrayal of Luther's powerful personality means that one finishes the book informed, stirred and edified.
'Luther in Love' by Douglas Bond is published by Ink Blots Press in paperback for £11.99. It is currently only available in the UK from us.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

More News of the Sponsored AV Calendars

Here on the right is Duwen Musaka, sitting next to his wife Julia. He is a Zambian pastor and the distributor of our calendars. He has been busy since the second and final box arrived some weeks back, and sent a report after completing his work over Easter. Some extracts from it are given here:-

We thank God for the gift of calendars that our brethren are able to read a scripture daily and be helped to reflect on God. It is a wonderful work and edifying the inner man who is created in the image and after the likeness of Christ. I want extend our thanks to all those who participated in making these calendars available to us and reaching the intended brethren. We thank you for participating in extending the kingdom of God through literature distribution.

Duwen lives in Kabwe, which has a bad reputation as one of the ten most polluted places in the world! It was historically important for lead mining. But here Duwen is active in bringing something that is not tarnished by its environment - the Bible, along with other Christian literature. Our sponsored calendars are an added bonus:-

We had another distribution during Easter. Three of our branch churches gathered in one place to celebrate the death, burial and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. They had invited another church to join them. This brought the total number of churches gathered together to four. These are rural churches in central Zambia. We drove for 32 km in a village road to get to this place where they had gathered. After the service on the Lord’s Day, 16th April 2017, all the leaders and pastors gathered to receive the calendars. I took one calendar, assembled it to show them how it is done. I showed them that this is a scriptural calendar is giving us verses to read each day. I encouraged those who read local language Bibles to do the same in their own language. They were very pleased to receive such calendars which could help them read the Word of God daily. Others were asking about Bibles both in English and local languages. It was a joyous moment for them returning home from Easter celebration with a present from the United Kingdom.

On another occasion, four pastors came to Kabwe for a meeting from Keembe and Mukonchi respectively. These are rural areas in Central Province of Zambia. After the meeting, I had time to show them how to assemble the calendars. They were pleased to receive such calendars with scriptures for each day. One of them said, “This is now reading the Bible through to the end of the year."

What a privilege it is to be able to support these people! May the Lord grant his rich blessing upon them as they engage with his Word. 

Friday, 31 March 2017

Sponsored Calendar Distribution News

Good news! 
The final box of our sponsored AV Calendars has at last been received in Zambia, after delays from their postal service. So all 80 have now arrived safely.  Duwen Musaka, a pastor in Kabwe, and our contact out there, has already been on with the work of distribution of the calendars that came in the first box.  He sent pictures of some to whom they were given at a Conference in Kapiri Mposhi in the Copperbelt Province. One was also presented to Chief Chamuka of Chisamba district at a ceremony further south in Central Province. We look forward to more news in due course.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Reading Together

Our online reading club for ladies is just about to start a new book - so now would be a great time to join! Would you like to read more? Do you have a growing pile of half finished books? Let us help you read a book from cover to cover! We read just a few chapters every couple of weeks and discuss each chapter on the blog - it's all private as the blog is only accessible to subscribers.
Our new book is Why the Reformation Still Matters by Michael Reeves & Tim Chester. This is a contemporary look at the importance of the doctrines underpinning the Reformation 500 years ago. Please click on the link to read more about the book (including a blog review), and contact me if you want to sign up to the reading club. Don't forget, reading club members get a discount!

Monday, 27 February 2017

Photography Competition

This is the time of year when we finalise our printing for next year's AV Block Calendar.  The texts have been chosen (a labour of love), typed up and proof read, and these are being printed as we speak. But the pictures for the calendar back need to be chosen ASAP and it is causing us a headache. Someone (can't think who?!) came up with the bright idea of a photography competition to help us choose a suitable picture.  So here goes...

What we need is:
A good quality photo, landscape in shape but not necessarily landscape in content (although landscapes are of course popular).
Preferably UK based.
Something colourful with some detail in the foreground as well as the background.
Something you wouldn't mind looking at all year!

What we don't want:
Dark dreary landscapes.
Cars - at least not modern cars with number plates that can be identified.
Churches - we get complaints about churches, sorry! We are non-conformists after all.

If we pick your picture:
Well Done!
Your name will credited on the calendar
You can take your pick of any book in the shop up to a value of £10
You receive a free calendar when it has been printed.

Here are some examples of pictures we have used in the past...

If you think you have anything we might be interested in please get in touch with .
Our deadline is next Monday 6th March.
We look forward to seeing your pictures!

Saturday, 25 February 2017

2000 years of Christ's Power - Offer Ending Soon

The long awaited 4th volume in the '2000 Years of Christ's Power' series is now available.  It covers the period 1560-1740: an era of great struggles, of war and theological controversy when there was conflict between traditions, and conflict within traditions. Dr Nick Needham, lecturer in Church History at Highland Theological College in Dingwall, covers Germany, England and Scotland, as well as issues affecting the Reformed Faith, Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. Quite an assortment!  

Don't miss out on this great offer - only available until the end of February

Saturday, 7 January 2017

Why the Reformation Still Matters

What is the legacy of the Reformation? The contention of this book is that, although it left its mark on history, the real impact of the Reformation was upon doctrine. And this is precisely the aspect of it which is in greatest danger of being overlooked as we enter upon 2017 - exactly 500 years since Martin Luther nailed up the 95 theses. In successive chapters, with a historian's analysis and a pastor's application, doctrines hammered out during that remarkable period of history such as on sin and justification, the church and the sacraments, as well as the Holy Spirit and everyday life are revisited. The Reformers' insights into scripture teaching prove invaluable to today's Christian, and as the authors sum up: 'The only way the Reformation could possibly not still matter would be if beauty, goodness, truth, joy and human flourishing no longer mattered. We have been made to enjoy God, but without the great truths the Reformers fought for that display him as glorious and enjoyable we shall not do so. Seeing less of him, we shall be lesser and sadder. Seeing more of him, we shall be fuller and happier.'
Why the Reformation Still Matters by Michael Reeves & Tim Chester, published by IVP, £9.99