Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Book Review: Thriving in Babylon by Larry Osborne

The book of Daniel is one of the most popular books of the Bible especially in the Old Testament. Many VBS lessons have come from it as well as youth sermons on how to live a godly live in the midst of ungodly people. Larry Osborne has written a timely book that draws a parallel from Daniel to Christians living in a hostile culture called, Thriving in Babylon.

If you know the story of Daniel, you know he was a Jewish boy who was taken into Babylon during the exile along with several other Jews. The first chapter of Daniel was about him taking a stand of not eating things that were against the Old Testament law and in the sixth chapter where he honored God by continuing to pray to Him even though there was a law to pray only to the king. Also we should not forget about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who would not bow the knee to a golden statue with the threat of death waiting for them.

Osborne admits in the book that Christians are living in a Babylon where it is godless and hostile toward their faith. He even writes about how many people call themselves Christians when they are really not. Osborne encourages his readers that there is hope. While the world is falling apart all around us, we as Christians have hope. 1 Peter says we have a living hope in Christ.

Osborne says that even though our culture is hostile towards Christians, we must always be obedient. Christians are called to love their neighbors and make disciples. The Apostle in the book of Acts were ones who obeyed Jesus' great commission in a hostile culture where the threat of death was lurking at their door. We also see that in Daniel where he was thrown in the lion's den and his three friends in the fiery furnace. Yes, they did make it out alive, but they were obedient even though they did not know they were going to live.

In making disciples, Osborne echos what many other Christian leaders have been saying the last few years. The church is God's plan A for making disciples. While the church is not perfect, it has always been part of God's plan for the gospel to be preached and disciples to be made.

As I mentioned earlier, this is a timely book because of how our culture has become hostile towards Christianity. This book is easy to read for anyone to pick up. I think churches will benefit from it whether as a group study or giving to each member to read on their own.

Thanks David C Cook for letting me review this book.

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