Soon I’ll share my list of books read for 2022. Usually, with my list, it includes links to the books I reviewed throughout the year. Sadly, this year I did not review a single book…yet! I did more substitute preaching this year than ever before, and I just lacked the mental energy to do that and write book reviews too. Perhaps that sounds pathetic, but I am a low-energy person and limited in what I can do. I am glad I was at least able to read 40 plus books! A number of these books were important, and it is to my own detriment that I did not review them. Reviewing a book helps solidify content in your mind, so I “lose” when I don’t review certain books.
So, in the next couple months, I plan (lets hope this comes to fruition!) to review 5-10 of the “important” books I read in 2022. Meanwhile, I will begin with a simpler review for this post – to get myself back in the groove of writing book reviews.
Astronomy and the Bible, Questions and Answers by Donald DeYoung, Baker Book House, 1989.
I assumed this old book would now be out of print, but I was pleasantly surprised that it is still in print. The cover has been updated since then. (Updated cover in the image.) That such a book has remained in print proves that many have found it helpful!
If you are like me, as you get older you can forget basic things about science that you learned in school. Perhaps those with children get a bit of a refresher as their child moves through school, but I have no kids. In a question and answer format, divided into 6 parts, this book answers questions primarily about astronomy, but related to general science as well. The 6 parts are: The Earth and Moon, The Solar System, The Stars, Galaxies and the Universe, General Science, Technical Terms and Ideas.
The question and answer format helped the book flow, and I did not feel like I was getting bogged down. While written in 1989, it seems an ideal format for the internet age that is shortening our attention spans! The author, who taught physics and astronomy at a college, is skilled at answering questions in an easy to grasp way. He does not “dumb down” science yet does not write in a overly technical way either.
At first I worried that a book from 1989 might be too dated, as new discoveries and scientific advancements are continually made, but the majority of the content is timeless. After all, much basic science does remain the same…What is a star? a meteorite? a satellite? a quasar? What causes eclipses? tides? (There are more technical or advanced questions than these.)
The author is an evangelical Christian, and that is evident throughout the book in various ways. Sometimes he simply reminds us how the heavens declare the glory of God, and other times helps the reader see that science and the Bible do not conflict but can enhance each other. (The author does appear to be a young earth creationist, as well as a dispensationalist, just fyi, but that is not a major focus.)
I recommend this book to you. I’ll close the review with an excerpt from the book:
Question 87 is “are there heavenly signs of the end times?” and a chart shows Scripture verses about things that will happen in the heavens associated with the return of the Lord. The author emphasizes that we, as believers, should not fear such things, even though some of these signs will certainly be startling or frightening. Here is the excerpt:
“However, the Christian, who knows the Creator of the stars, has no cause to fear such signs. In Jeremiah 10:2, the Lord says, ‘do not be terrified by signs in the sky.’ A century ago, in England, there occurred what has come to be called ‘the dark day.’ Unusual atmospheric conditions led to a day that remained so dark that there was widespread fear and panic about the possible arrival of the world’s end. A British government assembly was in session at this time. A suggestion was made that the assembly adjourn so the men could return to their homes. One of the members then stood and made a profound statement that settled everyone down. He said that if the world was indeed at an end, it was too late to rearrange one’s life. And if it was not ending, there was work to be done. The men immediately returned to the work at hand. This philosophy of life works well for the Christian. First, be sure that your life is in order before God. The redeem the time and work for him, instead of standing around and fearfully waiting for signs in the sky. (pages 112-113, 1989 edition)
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Robert & Willene Spicer said:
Excellent, succinct review!