Christianbook.com Ratings and Reviews

Customer Reviews for Bethany House Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day

Bethany House Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day

Many Christians would like to know the basics of theology but are unsure where to begin. In Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day Daryl Aaron provides short, easy-to understand readings that answer some of the most perplexing questions about the nature of God, heaven, the Bible, church, and even ourselves. Aaron blends the knowledge of a college professor with the friendly, welcoming tone of a pastor. Broken into forty small chapters, this book is perfect for those who want quick and clear answers to their questions.
Average Customer Rating:
4.6 out of 5
4.6
 out of 
5
(10 Reviews) 10
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (10 reviews)
5 stars
6
4 stars
4
3 stars
0
2 stars
0
1 star
0
10 out of 10100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Review 1 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Theological Refresher or Devotional Challenge

Date:May 7, 2013
Customer Avatar
spirituallywired
Location:Oconomowoc, WI
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
By Daryl Aaron
A Review
How do we know God? I mean how do we really know God? Most of us, if we are perfectly honest with ourselves don’t spend near as much time with God as we think we should. We may quietly reflect upon what a meaningful amount of time in His Word each day should look like. Perhaps how much time we need to spend in prayer. Yet, it seems as though the busyness of our lives serves as a never-ending boundary, which keeps us from achieving this goal. Why is that? Well, I am sure there are a number of reasons. Yet, the fact remains that God still wants us to know Him. How? We know Him by developing a meaningful relationship with Him. How? Mainly just as simple as developing a relationship with our fellow humans; open communication and taking the time to getting to know the true character of God by knowing and understanding what pleases Him and obeying Him. How? (You sure ask a lot of questions, don’t you?). Simply by taking the time each day to study and reflect up His Word to know who He is; His character, His attributes.
Which also brings me to Daryl Aaron’s delightful volume, “Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day.” Don’t be put off by the title. I was very pleased in my reading of this book. As I did so, I found at least two very useful purposes for this work. First of all, I can see it being put to use by those who either would like a refresher of their theology. Those who have read the tomes of rich theology and would like a refresher. Also, for those who have not had the chance to read these rich treasures, but would like to benefit from the fruits of those labors, this is the book for you. Secondly, this volume could also serve as a robust resource for a devotional study to supplement a time in God’s Word each day. This book includes a brief introduction of several significant doctrines. I hesitate even to title it “introduction,” because Aaron does such a marvelous job of describing these rich doctrines so concisely and clearly that you walk away with a rich understanding of the doctrine without feeling like your head is about to explode. He doesn’t waste words and gets straight to the point, which is what I really appreciate about Aaron. On the other hand, even though he briefly describes these doctrines doesn’t mean that you walk away with a children’s rendition of theology.
No, whether you are just beginning to take the step of entering into the rich realm of theology, or if you are a veteran, I am certain that you will appreciate this small volume as I did, and that you will find a valuable resource for your devotional life or for your initial journey into getting to know God better by studying more deeply who He is and how He operates. Happy reading!
I would like to extend my gratitude to Bethany House Publishers for the free copy of the book for me to offer this unbiased, balanced review.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 2 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Exceptional

Date:October 29, 2012
Customer Avatar
Jimmy Reagan
Location:West Union, OH
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Here’s real help! You are surely aware of the theological illiteracy of our day. Christians are often easy prey for cults because they so little know what they believe. Hand them the usual systematic theology book and they panic, or at least lay it aside quickly. Would you agree that we need more easily-digestible materials to rescue confused Christians? This book written by Daryl Aaron and published by Bethany House meets a real need.
I’ll just admit it–I’m totally impressed with how well Mr. Aaron brought theology so clearly to us in this volume. I went in thinking that superficiality would drown this volume because of its daunting task to make us understand theology in a little over 200 pages, but that is not the case. This book is good, really good.
The strengths of this book include understandable definitions, information on important divisions in Christian thought, and a clear love of Christ, His Word, and the theology that springs from it. It also succeeds in communication as many things are well put. I found myself underlining something in every chapter.
The book was at it weakest when in controversy. Particularly anything that touched the Calvinism-Arminianism debate took a much more cautious approach. I suspect that was more the publishers guideline than the authors choice. Still, there is value in presenting both sides as objectively as possible and letting we readers decide for ourselves. The only big criticism I could make of this book is the lack of an index.
This book will be a real boon to younger Christians. For those of us who have most of the many works on systematic theology, this book is still a real asset. In my own studies I enjoy reading the larger works for understanding, but reading volumes like this to suggest how to teach it is helpful. I’d love for Christians everywhere to read this book.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 .
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 3 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Interesting Topics

Date:October 29, 2012
Customer Avatar
LETHER
Location:Chesapeake, VA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
This book gives an overview of theology in a format which is quite easy to understand. The questions discussed could be very beneficial to new followers of Christ. The scriptures used for support throughout the book are explained in layman terms, which eliminate confusion. However, I would have liked more clarification for some of the topics discussed; yet, others left me with a better understanding. I particularly enjoyed reading about salvation and the significance of the Lord’s Supper, some very interesting points were made. I found this book to be less complicated than some theology books that I have attempted to read. This book can serve as the groundwork for Christians who are beginning their relationship with God. Providing brief chapters on questions many have asked or will ask. Even mention of things that maybe you never thought about asking. Prompting the reader to have discussions with other believers or research the facts for themselves, especially the beliefs of the Arminians and Calvinists.
Thanks Bethany House for including this book on your list of titles to be reviewed free of charge and allowing me the opportunity to express my true opinion of this book.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 4 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Systematic Theology for Everyone

Date:October 23, 2012
Customer Avatar
Phronsie Howell
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Well written and easy to read. Yeah, it's taken me a bit longer than 15 minutes a day to read through this book but I like taking notes. 40 chapters, organized in the way that most systematic theology books are, but much easier to read. Personally, I really want to read the big books on systematic theology, but this book is a really good introduction and much more my speed right now. I feel like I have a good understanding of systematic theology, and while I don't know things as deeply as I'd like to, I'm comfortable with what I know for now. I am much more capable of explaining why I believe what I believe now and that's a good thing.
Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, all thoughts are my own.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 5 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Written well enough for different ages

Date:October 18, 2012
Customer Avatar
Svlemommy
Location:TX
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
This book is well organized and easy to read. It has 40 questions which Dr. Aaron answers with about 4-5 pages each. The topics range from angels to sin to baptism and so far beyond...
My husband is a pastor and has been able to use this both in sermon preparation as well as for his graduate level classes.
As far as one of the more difficult theological questions to explain, the Trinity, the explanation is clear and has explanations from the Nicene Creed as well as explanations of what some have tried to use to explain the Trinity. It's a hard concept but this explanation would be really helpful for someone who is just starting to learn about God and why Christians believe in the Trinity of God.
There is a question, What is Sin? that we have been finding useful in explaining the concept to our oldest son. The way Dr. Aaron writes is easy enough for even him to understand (he's 6) but complex enough for an adult to get "meat" out of it as well.
I received a review copy of the book from Bethany House in exchange for a review. No additional compensation has been received and I was not required to write a positive review.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 6 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Theology in manageable doses

Date:October 13, 2012
Customer Avatar
Josi
Location:Baker City, OR
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
The concept behind “Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day” is superb. It presents a depth of information in a concise format and aims for objective handling of controversial doctrines. The reader who is new to the study of theology and seeks greater understanding will not be overwhelmed; neither will the reader who has a solid background in theological studies be bored. The author makes a sincere effort at “muting” his own beliefs and presuppositions and where he achieves that, he succeeds in making this book an excellent resource, giving respect and balanced perspective to the varying sides of controversial issues. However, there are a number of instances when Aaron does not successfully pull off objectivity. Most notably this occurs when he addresses the question of whether or not a Christian can lose salvation. After maintaining an objective stance while presenting both views on that topic, he then makes a “heartfelt” attempt to convince the reader of his own position, which is that of eternal security. To his credit, he does clearly acknowledge that he is giving his opinion at that point. However, another topic that Aaron shades with unacknowledged subjectivity pertains to the gifts of the Holy Spirit. He does not come right out and say it, but his treatment of the topic suggests that he is a Cessationist (one who believes the gifts of the Holy Spirit ceased at the end of the first century). Indeed, in concluding that chapter Aaron states, “There is no command to know one’s spiritual gifts”. He then goes on to suggest that if we know what our spiritual gifts are, great, if not, it doesn’t matter. For anyone familiar with 1 Corinthians and Paul’s discussion on spiritual gifts a statement like that is bewildering. No, Paul does not command us to know our spiritual gifts, but he tells us that we have them, that we are to compliment one another with them, that we form a functioning body when we operate in our gifts, and that the Spirit gives them to us as He determines (1 Cor 12). Paul also says to earnestly seek spiritual gifts, particularly the gift of prophecy (1 Cor 14:1). I am not a fan of powerless Christianity, and I am wary of any teacher who downplays the importance of the Holy Spirit and in essence writes off whole chapters of Scripture as being inapplicable to us today. For this reason I would add a note of caution to my recommendation that others read this book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Bethany House. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 7 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Handy Guide to Theology for the Lay Person

Date:October 12, 2012
Customer Avatar
Heather King
Location:Gloucester, VA
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
by Daryl Aaron
If you're interested in learning more about what you believe as a Christian and why, then Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day is a great place to start. I've known many well-meaning Christians say that they love Jesus and they know they're going to heaven, so that's just enough. No need to worry about whether the Genesis account of Creation is factual or symbolic. No need to argue over Calvinism or Arminian viewpoints. No need to wonder about Jesus' deity or the roles of the Trinity.
But Scripture admonishes us to be ready to give an account for what we believe, and we are told to worship God "in Spirit and in truth"--not just emotions. After all, we are to love God with all our heart and mind. Understanding what the Bible teaches helps us grow in our faith and prepares us to share it with others, as well as withstand the arguments of the world and Satan.
Still, we don't all have the time, interest, or money to earn seminary degrees and read theological textbooks. So, this format of breaking down large theological issues into 15-minute sections is helpful to the everyday Christian just trying to better understand his or her faith. The author tries to stay fair when presenting differing perspectives on these issues, repeating often that Scriptures can be used to suggest this viewpoint or that viewpoint, while always returning to the bottom-line, foundational doctrines that form the basis of our faith.
This book isn't a textbook or an exhaustive discussion of any of these issues, nor does it claim to be. It's a quick overview for the lay person who wants a foundational look at the Christian faith.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review and the opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 8 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Brief Overview For Those With Little Time

Date:October 9, 2012
Customer Avatar
The Seeking Disciple
Location:Lexington, SC
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
If you are interested in studying theology but have little time then this book is perfect for you. The title itself suggests that you can understand theology in 15 minutes. Probably a bit of an overstatement there since God is beyond our understanding (Romans 11:33-36) but the title does suggest that if you have only 15 minutes, you can read a theology book. And this is the case with this book.
The book is broken into standard systematic theology studies. The book begins with knowing God and how can we know Him. Dr. Aaron then looks at the Bible since the Bible is the perfect guide to knowing and understanding God. With our Bibles in hand, we can now study God. From there we begin to learn about God's nature, the Trinity, creation including angels, demons, and Satan. We begin to learn about humanity, our fall into sin, and what original sin. The study of Jesus focuses on His deity, His becoming flesh, His life, death, and resurrection. The person and work of the Holy Spirit is discussed before moving into implications of Jesus' death and resurrection regarding our salvation. Here Dr. Aaron deals with the complex issues related to salvation such as election and whether Jesus died for all men or not (limited vs unlimited atonement) as well as eternal security of the believer. Dr. Aaron briefly discusses the Church before turning to end times events related to the second coming of Jesus Christ and heaven and hell.
Overall I thought the book was laid out well. Dr. Aaron moves quickly through the chapters and I actually could read them in less than 15 minutes. If you find you are short on time but want to understand the basics of Christian theology, this book is perfect for doing just that. I would take some issues with Dr. Aaron's views regarding Arminianism (being an Arminian) but I could lay those aside here. His views regarding Arminianism are the only reason I don't give the book 5 stars and I believe he is mistaken in his views regarding the teachings of Arminius but that is for another debate and another book. Overall, I enjoyed this book and believe you can benefit from it.
I reviewed this book from a review copy given to me by Bethany House Publishers.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 9 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

well balanced introduction to systematic theology

Date:October 5, 2012
Customer Avatar
bookwomanjoan
Location:Oak Harbor, WA
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Aaron writes, “God himself is the greatest treasure imaginable, and theology, the study of God, is the greatest treasure hunt imaginable.” (11)
Aaron provides us with a great treasure map as he introduces his readers to systematic theology. He explains briefly what theology is, why we must study it, and then takes us through it, topic by topic.
He writes this book from an evangelical perspective, believing that the Bible is what it claims to be, the Word of God without error. He believes Jesus is who he claims to be – fully God and fully man. He believes Jesus died and was resurrected and that he is the only way for sinners to be accepted by God.
This is a great introduction to theology. He presents all the theological views where evangelicals differ in generally a very balanced way. I think, over all, he has done a great job. I felt he did a good explanation of the views on election. On the subject of the atonement (limited or unlimited), he introduced a “third view” that was new to me. His explanation on the views of the Lord's Supper was excellent, too. (I do note a couple of places below where I think he failed to maintain objectivity.)
Aaron writes that he has tried to fairly represent views he does not hold himself and has tried to keep his own theological opinions from showing too much. I noted a couple of places where he failed to maintain his objectivity. In the chapter, “Do Humans Have Parts?”, he gives the three possible views: monism, dualism or dichotomism, tripartism or trichotomism. He writes, “The best view seems to be a combination of monism and dichotomism.” (82) This may come as a surprise to readers as he notes that tripartism is more popular among lay people.
Another place Aaron shows his bias is in the chapter on original sin. He writes regarding the view “that all people are totally unable to help themselves and so are totally dependent upon the grace of God,” as “a hard position to embrace.” (93) He then muddies the waters, I think, when he says of the “basically Arminian view,” “...we are not totally powerless; however, we are unable to reach out to God for help, so God must take the initiative. When he provides the help we need, then we can and must respond.” (93) It is not until several chapters later he explains this as “prevenient grace” that is given to all humans. (153)
Considering the breadth of this book, I think Aaron has done well. This is a very readable introduction to the various aspects of systematic theology. The chapters are short, about four or five pages, just right for reading one a day.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of this review.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.
Review 10 for Understanding Theology in 15 Minutes a Day
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Well-Written, Though Brief, Theological Education

Date:September 30, 2012
Customer Avatar
Floyd Johnson
Location:Upstate NY
Age:55-65
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It was a little over a month ago that I stumbled upon a classic theology book by Gordon R. Lewis, Decide For Yourself. This small book provided a workbook that guided individuals toward discovering their own theology - rather than being fed a canned theology. Alas, this small paperback is nearly out of print and is very expensive, if it can be found.
Daryl Aaron’s book attempts to accomplish some of the same thing - though, rather than being a workbook, it is a monograph that works through the various important issues of theology. The 40 chapters start with the nature of theology itself (a discussion included in most theological texts) and end with a discussion on the nature of the church and the end times. Dr. Aaron attempts (and succeeds) to write an unbiased synopsis of the various positions that have been taken by scholars in the theological literature. He also is careful to state his own opinion - though putting the summary of his opinion in a section separated from the main body of his text at the end of each chapter.
Each chapter discusses a major issue in theology. The ideas are presented objectively and include scripture to support each opinion. Because the book is rather small, each chapter is in reality only a summary of the various opinions. Though references are provided, they do not provide significant guidance for the reader to really do additional study on their own. The other major absence is the lack of an index. Though terminology is used throughout the book, there is no way to find where a particular term is referenced in the book.
The book is readable by the average layman and would serve as a good book in a Sunday School class or small group study. It would also serve as a helpful handbook to use along with Lewis’ Decide For Yourself, mentioned earlier.
______________
This review is based on a free copy provided by Bethany House, the publisher, for the purpose of creating this review. The opinions expressed are mine alone.
0points
0of 0voted this as helpful.