This is one of the best books I've read -- not just on "marriage" but on the Gospel and it's application in any kind of relationship (marriage or otherwise). I'm not married but I think this book would be a great primer for anyone, and a great resource for those who are already married. It isn't simply doctrinal, but Dave Harvey also throws in his own life experiences and anecdotes that made me laugh out loud, or brought me to tears. It's not a difficult read but still contains meaty scripture references and solid theology (which the author Harvey makes sure you understand right off the bat). The foundation of this book is GRACE and how if we see ourselves first as the chief of sinners, then we will be more willing to extend grace to those closest to us.
Practical, Readable, and written for both Husband and Wife
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 14 years ago
I have read many books on marriage. Some are good, some not as good. This one is fantastic. It gets to the root issue ,which is we have difficulties in our marriages because there are two sinners involved that many times do not look to the Savior daily. Too many books out there are directed towards the wife (Let's face it, sadly, many men are not readers) and turn out to be nothing more than warmed over psycho-babble, talking about unmet needs and unfulfilled desires. When we look to our spouse, instead of Christ, to 'meet our needs' we are looking in the wrong place. It is true that the Lord often uses our spouse as a means to bless us and fulfill our needs and desires, but what happens when He doesn't? This is the strength of the book. I have counseled people who are in marital strife and I will recommend this book to all of them as well as anyone that asks me to officiate at their wedding. This is required material for anyone that wants to exalt the Lord Jesus Christ in their marriage. If you are looking for step by step guides as to how to make your home run smoothly, this is not the book for you. If you are looking for a book that is biblical, readable and one that either husband or wife can read. READ THIS BOOK. You will not be disappointed!
Potentially the Best Marriage Book I've Read
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 15 years ago
A person does not have to be married for long to realize that marriage is a lot more difficult than it may seem. Certainly it is a lot more difficult than God intended for it to be. With the fall into sin came the rise of the self, with the loss of perfection came the dominance of sin. Even the best marriages are now tainted by sin, by selfishness, by a distinct lack of love. Every marriage represents the joining of two sinners. Though they love each other, they fight constantly to love each other as much as they know they should. While the shelves at bookstores, both Christian and mainstream, are groaning under the weight of books dealing with marriage, few of these books offer assistance with the root of all of the problems we encounter in our relationships. Few of them get to the heart of the matter, looking deep into the human heart and prescribing the biblical cure. Into this void steps Dave Harvey with his book When Sinners Say "I Do,", a book that is justly garnering much positive attention. C.J. Mahaney says it "provides clarity in conflict, hope in despair, and points the way to a joy-filled, God glorifying marriage." Jerry Bridges says it "will be helpful for any married couple whether they've been married five weeks or fifty years." And Randy Alcorn calls it "a wonderful book" that is "honest, refreshing, practical, and above all biblical." What has inspired these glowing endorsements is the book's focus on the harsh reality of sin and the beautiful reality of grace. When Sinners Say "I Do" is a book that focuses a lot of attention on sin. In fact, the first half of the book focuses predominantly on this topic. This may seem unnecessary to some and even depressing to others, but to ignore sin is to ignore one of the greatest human realities. "My friends," writes Harvey, "when sin becomes bitter, marriage becomes sweet." And so he writes about sin and grace in order to promote enjoyable, God-glorifying marriages. This is not a how-to book or a step-by-step to a happy marriage. It does not offer ancient secrets or knowledge that has until now been hidden. Rather, it simply offers the Bible's realistic take on the reality of human sin and the power of the gospel to build and sustain healthy, happy, marriages that honor and glorify God. I can't say it better than Paul David Tripp. In the book's foreword he writes, "This book grasps at the core drama of every married couple. This drama is no respecter of race, ethnic origin, location, or period of history. It is the one thing that explains the doom and hope of every human relationship. It is the theme that is on every page of this book in some way. What is this drama? It is the drama of sin and grace." Harvey deals frankly, honestly and unrelentingly with sin and on the basis of that foundation allows grace to shine in all its beauty. Though every marriage for all time will be the union of two sinners, God is good to grant grace that we can have relationships that are strong, vibrant and
A Hope-Filled and Gospel-Centered Book
Published by Thriftbooks.com User , 15 years ago
As Dave writes: "If you are married, or soon to be married, you are discovering that your marriage is not a romance novel. Marriage is the union of two people who arrive toting the luggage of life. And that luggage always contains sin." Sin, sin, sin. Does this sound like it would be a dreary book? Well, the good news is that it is not! Dave brings a humorous and light touch to a heavy subject, creating a winsome and appealing approach to an important topic. Dave spends the first four chapters addressing the doctrine of sin and why we need to have a healthy suspicion of our own hearts and motives before seeking to address the hearts and motives of others. But some of the greatest "gold," in my opinion, is found in chapters five and six, when Dave addresses mercy and forgiveness. The last two chapters will be a surprise to most people. The second to last is titled "Concerning Sex." But it's not a chapter that unmarried people have to skip. It simply addresses how sex in marriage should be a grand adventure, and then examines the selfish, sinful reasons that hinder the joy of married sex. The final chapter is poignantly sweet. It is titled "When Sinners Say Goodbye," and it is subtitled "Time, Aging, and Our Glorious Hope." Referring to the truth of our daily outward decline but inward spiritual renewal (2 Corinthians 4:16), Dave writes: "A maturing marriage is one that sees all the way to the finish line and beyond. As married Christians, God bestows upon us the extraordinary honor of nurturing and celebrating the inner renewal while also caring for the outer decay. It's an adventure in irony, made possible by the gospel, the only real treasure in our brittle jars of clay. Not every married Christian sees this clearly. But joy awaits those who do." Highly recommended!
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