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Customer Reviews for Crossway Books & Bibles Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook

Crossway Books & Bibles Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook

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Customer Reviews for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Review 1 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

When in doubt, check this out!

Date:September 28, 2012
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David Gough
Location:Alexandria, VA
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
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The title of this book alone is compelling. Rare is the Christian who has not at times questioned his faith. Mike McKinley has done the Church a great service in writing this small volume. He has accomplished two significant things in the process. First, he has forced the professing-but-not-possessing believer to take a long, hard look at the reasons he thinks he is saved and fires off seven objections why that may not actually be the case. And secondly, toward the end of the book, he encourages sincere believers to confidently and regularly lay hold of the grace that has come to them through their faith in the death and resurrection of Christ. McKinley's purpose is not to create doubt, but to answer it with biblical objectivity. His bullet points include that one is not a Christian 1) just because he says he is, 2) if he hasn't been born again, 3) just because he likes Jesus, 4) if he enjoys sin, 5) if he does not endure to the end, 6) if he doesn't love other people, and 7) if he loves his stuff. Arminian readers will take exception to some of his arguments, but those of a more reformed bent will be encouraged to find a book that encourages them to examine their walk with Christ in terms of its fruit-bearing quality. Throughout the book, McKinley points to the local church as the essential place where one's faith is declared and matured. As our own church enters a period of renewal and reformation, I believe this book will help our members to consider what a Christian really is and cause them to evaluate themselves in light of Scripture. I also plan to order a quantity to share with family and friends whose faith is more presumptuous than practical.
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Review 2 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Almost a Great Book!

Date:May 10, 2012
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wjcollier3.wordpress.com
Location:Tyler, Texas
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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A couple of months ago, I had the opportunity to attend a conference where Mike McKinley was one of the speakers. I enjoyed his presentations and sermons immensely and was fortunate enough to meet him and trade a few emails. I committed at that conference to buy both the books he has written and review them for you. Am I Really a Christian? is really the second of his books. I will post a review of the other in a few weeks.
I am more conflicted over this book than I have been over a book in a long time. First let me say, it is a really good book. Further, it addresses a real issue in the church: people who think they are Christians but are not. But how do you know who is and who is not really a Christian? It is less important for me or you to identify who is or is not; it is vitally important for me to be able to identify whether I am or not. and that is what McKinley tries to help us answer.
This book does not seem to be a direct reply to the doctrines of "easy believism" or "cheap grace" - inasmuch as it does not directly reference those belief systems or their proponents. Instead, it is a prophetic voice to a Christian subculture that often elevates professions and image above a genuine relationship with the God of the universe through the salvation that comes only in Jesus Christ.
In Am I Really a Christian?, McKinley identifies seven traits or characteristics which he thinks out to help an individual determine whether or not he is a Christian; he then writes a chapter based on each of these characteristics from the negative perspective. The chapter titles all begin: "You Are Not a Christian ...":
* Just Because You Say That You Are
* If You Haven't Been Born Again
* Just Because You Like Jesus
* If You Enjoy Sin
* If You Do Not Endure to the End
* If You Don't Love Other People
* If You Love Your Stuff
McKinley's writing is conversational and easy to follow. Most importantly, it is rooted in the scripture. And this is a good place to address why I am conflicted over this book. I appreciate that it uses the truth of the Gospel as the foundation. The problem is that I disagree with some of his interpretation. Don't get me wrong; most of it is spot-on. He could not be more right. The problem is where I think he gets it wrong, he gets it very wrong. This is most true of Chapter 5: "You Are Not a Christian If You Do Not Endure to the End".
When I ordered the book, I was fully aware of McKinley's Calvinist or Reformed beliefs; and I have an appreciation for them. The chapter about enduring did not surprise me. It is the depth of my reaction that surprised me.
The other surprise was my response to the scriptures he used to support his Calvinst position. I would use pretty much the same passages to support my Reformation Arminian position. It really is a matter of interpretation!
I don't want to be uncharitable. I count Mike McKinley as a bother and co-laborer in ministry. He desires to desires to associate and work alongside brothers and sisters who do not share his Calvinist soteriology, as do I.
He closes the book with a chapter where he asks then tries to answer the question: Can I ever really know if I am a Christian? followed by a chapter stressing the importance of membership in the local church. The chapter on church membership is perhaps the best in the book. My hope is that he will soon write an entire book on that topic.
Am I Really a Christian? is really quite a good book. That being said, as a reader you must go in with your eyes wide open. McKinley definitely approaches the subject through the lens of his deeply held Reformed theology, as he should.
This is a book I would recommend to pastors and teachers, along with those who are confident enough in their understanding of scripture to prevent being unduly influenced by the areas where I think McKinley just gets it wrong. I am hesitant to recommend it to individuals who struggle with assurance because the chapter on perseverance breeds the very false assurance McKinley tries to guard against. The book would also make a great general outline for a preaching or teaching series.
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Review 3 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Challenges you to think

Date:October 15, 2011
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Brad
Location:IL
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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Value: 
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Meets Expectations: 
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The author challenges you to think about your relationship with Christ. It is easy to say you are a Christian, but do you live a life that shows you are a Christian.
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Review 4 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Biblically Sound Conviction/Encouragement

Date:August 19, 2011
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TrenchMommy
Location:USA
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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Convicting. Encouraging. Challenging.
I always approach books on this topic with a bit of anxiety - wondering if I will walk away with more questions than when I begun. However, this book ranks first in the several I have read on this topic because it not only answered all my questions, but did so with great clarity. McKinley does not beat around the bush and present pages of lengthy explanation, rather he takes you back to Scripture for the answers. This book is a 140 page handbook for those who are willing to ask themselves the hard question of: "Am I really a Christian?".
Despite the sober subject and deep content, Mike helps ease the tension with his sprinkling of humor throughout the book. At first this may seem out of place, but as you read you feel as if you are having a personal conversation with a trusted mentor. He also provides great word pictures that take some difficult concepts and make them so much easier to understand. The book is also hands-on and interactive due to the "How To Respond" section at the end of each chapter. It is a good blend of book and Bible study combined into one cover and is suitable for individual or group use as well as appropriate for both teens and adults.
I was convicted and encouraged by this book. It helped me see some weak areas of my life and direct me to passages in the Bible that helped me determine my answer to the question: Am I Really a Christian? Whether you can answer that question without thinking about it or not, I highly recommend this book. Anyone who reads it will walk away benefiting from it...it's just that they may not benefit from it as they first expected. It's short, it's easy to read, founded on the Bible, and Christ centered. It is a great stand-alone read or a fabulous follow-up read to Because He Loves my, or Living the Cross Centered Life, or books of like kind.
Am I Really a Christian? is more than what meets the eye at first glance. This is a "really should read" book that packs quite a punch.
BOOK OVERVIEW:
Wheaton IL¬—Some stats indicate that nearly 80% of Americans identify themselves as Christians. Mike McKinley has noticed a concerning trend: There are far too many people who think that they are Christians, but aren’t actually in Christ. He likens it to people who claim to be “huge Yankees fans” but don’t watch games, don’t know the lineup, or the stats, and only ride the team’s glory around playoff time for the exciting World Series victory.
In Am I Really a Christian?, McKinley argues that there is much at stake in the decision to follow Christ, and it is crucial to know where you stand and what it means for your life.
McKinley writes with a genuine love and concern for those in the church. He asks tough questions in order to plead with readers who may not be running the race marked out in God’s Word to change course. Emphasizing the importance that Jesus and Paul placed on this issue, McKinley guides readers through Scripture to show what the Bible says about genuine faith.
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Review 5 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Are you a Christian? Really? Read this to be sure

Date:August 15, 2011
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Ricky Kirk
Location:South Point, OH
Age:35-44
Gender:male
Quality: 
4 out of 5
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Throughout my ministry has developed a growing frustration. I have a feeling that many other pastors share the same frustration, but it is rarely discussed. Too often our churches have fewer 'members' attending actively than is recorded (and reported) on the church roll. Where are all these 'ghost members'?
As I think about this I get frustrated. Are they now attending other churches? Did they simply move away, forever to be forgotten? Have they died? Were they even saved to begin with? Why are they still on the roll?
Enter Mike McKinley's excellent book Am I Really a Christian?. This book looks at seven areas for individuals to being the process of reviewing their lives. Each chapter begins with "You are not a Christian" and then has a different topic it covers. For example, "You are not a Christian just because you say that you are" and You are not a Christian if you enjoy sin". Two other personal favorites of mine include, "You are not a Christian if you don't love other people" and "You are not a Christian if you love your stuff".
This is a very thought provoking book and clearly presents a biblical understanding of salvation. These chapters allow the reader to evaluate whether they are indeed a follower of Christ or not. Maybe every person who joins a church should be required to read this book first? Or better yet, maybe every person on a church's roll, whether active or a 'ghost member' should read the book. This book is a call to understand the biblical meaning of salvation and will serve the church well! It might not relieve all the frustration pastors experience, but it will shed light on an important issue facing the church today.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Crossway as part of their Blogger Review Program. 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: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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Review 6 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Biblical treatment on important topics

Date:July 10, 2011
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Dave Jenkins
Location:Caldwell, Idaho
Age:25-34
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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Am I Really A Christian is written by Mike McKinley, Pastor of Guilford Baptist Church in Sterling, Virginia. In this book Mike explores the teaching of 2nd Corinthians 13:5, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?-unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” In an effort to help the reader see if they are “in the faith” or outside of the faith Mike explores the biblical teaching on what it means to be born again, loving Jesus, hating sin, perseverance, loving others and treasuring Christ.
There are three things about this book that make it a unique contribution to the field of Christian living: first the author explores in my opinion a topic that needs to be taught on more, which is the importance of the believer examining themselves to see if one is in the faith.
The second and most important contribution of this book is that Mike loves Christ and the Church. Because of the author’s love for Jesus and His Church he pleads with and encourages his readers about the importance of examining oneself in the faith by asking for the counsel of other brothers and sisters in Christ who are living with them in community in the context of the local Church. Most authors in the Christian living category do not teach on the importance of spiritual growth in the context of the local Church so it was encouraging to see Mike in this book flesh out what it means to live and grow in community with other brothers and sisters in the context of the local Church.
The final thing that stood out about this book is how Mike doesn’t stop at just explaining how one has failed in their Christian life if they have failed the test but shows how they can deal with that failure and have assurance that they are Christians. In fact, Mike spends a whole chapter—chapter nine discussing if one can know if they are a Christian.
Overall, Am I Really a Christian is a really helpful, well-written and biblical treatment that touches on the issues of easy believism, nominalism, and assurance. Whether you struggle with assurance of your faith or you are wondering if you are really a Christian, I encourage you to pick up and read this book. Reading this book will challenge you, at times convict you but it will always point you back to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Crossway as part of their Blogger Review Program. 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 Commision’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
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Review 7 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Highly Recommend this book

Date:July 7, 2011
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JudyMom2
Location:Arizona
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
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5 out of 5
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The introduction to this book says alot. Mike has a way of putting things in simple understandable terms. He uses humor and down to earth situations to help. This book is for those who believe they are Christians. It is backed up with scripture. Not just a verse here or there to fit what he says but paragraphs to show what God is saying to us.
It is not a comfortable book. He makes you think about where you are, if you are a true believer or just going through the motions. It is a book of conviction.
Christian has become a common word in some ways without the powerful meaning behind it. It is popular to say your a Christian but that is not the same as living as one.
I recommend this book to all who may be wondering where they stand in their faith, those who are floundering and even those who think they are in perfect condition.
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Review 8 for Am I Really a Christian? (Foreword by Kirk Cameron) - eBook
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Excellent

Date:July 6, 2011
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Todd
Location:Oklahoma City, OK
Age:25-34
Gender:male
Quality: 
5 out of 5
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The title of this book is somewhat provocative and that is a good thing. We need books that challenge our comfort zones and make us sweat a little bit. This book does that and it does it in a great way. This is a book that all church members need to go through in community with others because it will help to reveal to them whether they are following Christ or religion. I hope this book finds its way into your hands soon.
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