Posted on July 17th, 2012

I don't know how but God does and He saw to it that Henry Blackaby's book Experiencing God sold 7 million copies! I am pictured here with Henry and his son Richard whose book Spiritual Leadership I have read. I met them today, visited with them, and shared a copy of Dead Men Rising. I think I aroused their curiosity with it also and believe they will read it.  I dedicated Dead Men Rising to two people, my wife, Kathy, and to Dr. J. Sidlow Baxter who is now with the Lord. Baxter's book pointed me in the right direction with Romans 6 and I sat under his teaching when I was in high school. I shared these things with Henry Blackaby and he said, "I knew Baxter and invited him to speak at a conference I organized for pastors." This was a great connection!

I have prayed for my book to get into the right hands. Dead Men Rising will become the standard interpretation for Romans 6 and will clear up centuries of confusion, heartache, and deception from the misinterpretation that has persisted.

But my best contact was with a book seller. I shared my book with him. We talked about it for a while and he said, "This sounds really good. I will definitely read it."  Then we chatted some more and I noticed he had a picture of John MacArthur in his booth. I asked him about it and he said, "John and I have been friends for 40 years." To cut to the end of the story ... on Monday this book seller is going to send John MacArthur my book!  God is answering prayer.

And who else did I meet today? I met Ellie Mae Clampett from the Beverly Hillbillies! She is here with a friend who is promoting a book. Ellie Mae (Donna Douglas) loves the Lord and his Word!
Now listen to a story about a man named Jed
A poor mountaineer barely kept his family fed
Then one day he was shootin at some food
And up from the ground came a bubblin crude ... oil that is!

Posted on July 16th, 2012

This week I am at the International Christian Retail Show with my publisher, Deep River Books. At our banquet Sunday night I was able to share with other authors about Dead Men Rising: The Death of Sin|The Rise of Grace.

On Monday I had a book signing and three interviews. I was also able to meet two men whose books greatly impacted my life - Os Guinness and Carl W. Wilson.  Os Guinnes is a world renowned scholar and author and used to work with Francis Schaeffer.  Carl W. Wilson has written extensively on the family and discipleship and has also taught at Reformed Theological Seminary. 

Today I have at least one more interview, another book signing, and tonight I hope to meet Henry Blackaby, the author of Experiencing God and his son Richard Blackaby who wrote Leadership.  It will be an honor to meet them and I also hope I can share the importance of Dead Men Rising with them. If this book gets into the right hands it will clear up the confusion that has existed for centuries about Roman 6 and change the way this important passage of Scripture is taught. This is not about splittling theological hairs but it is about providing the propher theological foundation to our sanctification. The Church needs this - I have needed it and still need it! It's all about Christ and what he has done for us. 

Whatever happens may it all be for His glory.

Posted on July 7th, 2012

When you read the first story in the introduction to Dead Men Rising and the rest of the introduction, you will understand the title of my blog. In fact, with this link to the introduction, you can read it here and now.

Dead Men Rising is not splitting theological hairs. It is correcting an unfortunate teaching that has plagued the church for centuries up to our present time and has caused great anguish of soul and disillusionment among God's people.

Dr. J. Sidlow Baxter wrote about this error a generation ago in his book A New Call to Holiness.  And the late John Stott in his commentary on Romans said this about the accepted teaching on Romans 6.

It is incompatible with Christian experience… scriptural and historical biographies, together with our own experience, combine to deny this …. A serious danger of this popular view is that it can easily lead to disillusion or self-deception … [and] we feel torn between Scripture and experience, and may then be tempted either to doubt God’s Word or, in order to maintain our interpretation of it, to resort even to dishonesty about our experience.

Those are powerful words … and true!

Dead Men Rising takes the best in scholarship on this great passage, presents new insights from God’s Word (that were there all along), and combines it with unprecedented accuracy, clarity, and freshness to help God’s people understand what it means to be dead to sin and alive to God.

One pastor who read the manuscript wrote, “What a breath of fresh air! What clear sense it makes of the passage!”

Dead Men Rising: The Death of Sin||The Rise of Grace. Purchase a copy with this link and tell your pastors and leaders about it.

Goodbye disillusionment! Hello reality!

Posted on March 22nd, 2012

As you can imagine, I read a lot of material for Dead Men Rising. Some of it was poor, some traditional (usually a collection of unrealistic statements that were confusing and self-contradictory), and some outstanding.

Writers such as John Stott, N.T. Wright, and J. Sidlow Baxter showed great insight into this badly misinterpreted section of Scripture. Some of them agreed completely with my insights although none put all the pieces together as I had done.

One statement I came across was by a great scholar of a generation ago, Dr. William S. Plumer in his Commentry on Romans. As he wrestled with Romans 6 and conflicting ideas, he said, "Paul's language in this chapter is very bold and highly figurative. Yet I believe no commentator has attempted to unite these two interpretations, and present sin as a tyrant and task master, tormenting his servants with the horrors of guilt, and wielding his vile power to seduce them into deeper pollution."

I was stunned by what I read for two reasons. First, that no commentator had attempted to do what Plumer only touched on. No one else had fully explored what he was just beginning to see and what he could only comment on in passing. Second, as I read his quote I realized I had done what he said no one else had done. God had given me the perspective no one else had fully explored.

Now, having written my commentary on Romans 6:1-14, I am excited that centuries of confusion can be cleared up. I realize that is saying a lot, but I say it with honesty and giving God all the glory! As others have read the manuscript they have concurred that Romans 6 now makes complete sense to them whereas before it was confusing.

Pastor Ray Meunich, another reviewer of my manuscript said this:

“One of my haunting memories from my early years as a pastor is the time I was asked by a college student about what the Bible means when it says we have died to sin and now live to God. We were on a chartered bus heading towards a Bible conference. This young man was serious about victory over sin and about correct theology. I tried to put on a confident face as I muddled my way through an explanation that didn’t’ ring true for me experientially and just plain sounded confusing as it came out of my mouth. I could tell by the young man’s expression that everything I had said was clear as mud.

"How many times since then have I sat through and even led confusing Bible studies on this topic of the 'sinful nature' and death to sin! What a breath of fresh air this book has been to me! What clear sense it makes of the passages! I have already endorsed and will continue to endorse Dead Men Rising as a must read for those I know who are serious about the theology and practice of the new life and sanctification!”

Yes, Dead Men Rising does make clear and consistent sense of Romans 6:1-14, but more importantly it will heal the heartbreak and despair that many have experienced through the centuries from not understanding Paul's thought.

To God be all the glory!

Posted on March 15th, 2012

When I looked at my notes in that 3-ring binder on my shelf, I knew I had a huge task ahead of me. This was not an easy topic to tackle. Many had written on it before, and I knew I would be swimming against the current of popular thinking.

But I jumped in and my first strokes were to re-examine all my notes, page by page, making new comments and refreshing my mind on the details of the issues. Several weeks later when I finished, I decided that a good project would be writing a warm-up paper.

For several weeks I worked on this paper and finally self-published it with the long and daunting title of "The Sanctification of Human Nature and the Believer's Death to Sin." Such a long title was a throwback to older books, written centuries before, where the title actually said something. I didn't care if it wasn't snazzy, like Dead Men Rising (do you think that is snazzy?). I just wanted to engage fully once again after letting the topic lie still for many years. And I wanted to share it with a few brothers for their feedback.

I gave a copy to one of my dear friends, Herschel Martindale, and asked him to read it. I was so excited when a few weeks later he emailed the following to me:

Well, I finally concluded on the paper. I think that I agree with you on everything. I think that you did a fantastic job on that paper. Your research and development were really great. Your writing was also great. Congratulations, my dear friend. I need to confess, that I went into the paper with a position on two natures. I still need to check up a little on Galatians 5, but on what you covered, I think that it is great, and I definitely changed my understanding of several things. THANKS for your hard work.

As you can imagine, I was excited to receive this email from my friend and from a man who is an esteemed teacher of God's word around the world.

That was the extra motivation I needed. With this warmup project behind me I was ready to swim into the depths of this topic. The result was Dead Men Rising: The Death of Sin ||The Rise of Grace.

Herschel has read the entire manuscript of DMR and has now written an official endorsement which you will find on my Dead Men Rising webpage. He says, "It is probably the best commentary on Romans 6 I have ever read." He is telling others about it and always asks when Volume 2 is coming out! First things first. We have to get this one out, then, by God's grace I will continue my commentary on Romans 6:15-8:13. There is much more to clarify.

But for now, I hope you will plan on purchasing a copy of Dead Men Rising for yourself, for your pastors, and for other Christian leaders.

To God be all the glory!

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