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Posted January 21, 2012
Great intro to Christian doctrine
For many Christians the idea of discussing church doctrine or biblical theology is the equivalent of taking an extra dose of NyQuil after a long day at work–it puts them right to sleep. Theology is hard, they say. Doctrine is for priests and seminarians. This is simply not true. As Christians, our understanding of what the Bible teaches helps shape our worldview and strengthens our convictions. Besides, everyone has thoughts about God, who He is, how He relates to people, what He has done in history and in Christ. When you think on these things and form opinions, you are doing theology. The question is whether or not you are doing good theology.
If you can identify with the type of person described above, then please pick up a copy of Joshua Harris’ book Dug Down Deep. In this book Harris provides a simple, non-academic introduction to the great biblical doctrines. He covers topics such as the incarnation of Christ, the atonement, sanctification, the Holy Spirit, and the theology of the church in a reader friendly, practical way.
Don’t leave theology up to the priests and seminarians. If you desire to know better what the Bible teaches concerning the foundational confessions of the Christian faith, then there is no better place to begin than with this book.
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Posted July 5, 2014
Joshua Harris is a pastor and author, a father and husband, and
Joshua Harris is a pastor and author, a father and husband, and a disciple of Christ. His book Dug Down Deep shares his journey to becoming a Christian.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
The book title refers to the need to build your faith upon a solid foundation. And the author attempts to contribute to your solid foundation, first sharing with you his story of growth and enlightenment. He begins with what he terms his "rumspringa", which is based on the Amish tradition of allowing teenagers to run wild and explore the world before they make their choice on whether or not to stay in the Amish world. He says that his rumspringa couldn't compare-- he never got drunk or did drugs, but just displayed some mild rebellion-- but he was somewhat apathetic about God and his faith when he was younger. He grew his faith over time.
He then explains about the meaning of common terms like "doctrine" and "orthodoxy", and other common Christian building blocks, like the Trinity, Jesus, his crucifixion and resurrection. And his final chapter touches on how humility is needed when following and spreading God's Word. It is about recognizing how flawed we all are, and coming to God in humility and repentance.
The author is very "readable" and relatable. He doesn't talk down to you or over-complicate things. He uses a lot of personal stories (both his own and of others) as examples. And he is humble.
Posted March 3, 2014
It is far too easy to go through the routine of life without giv
It is far too easy to go through the routine of life without giving any inspection of the foundation upon which we are building. All of us have a story. For those who follow Christ, it is a story of grace and discovery. Joshua Harris provides a clear summary of his book, Dug Down Deep. “This book is the story of how I’ve been learning what it means to come to Jesus, to hear his words, and to put those words into practice.” (p. XI)Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
With this use of powerful story and personal illustration, Harris provides the reader with much to consider. I found Dug Down Deep personally challenging as I continue to re-think what it means to follow Jesus in our culture. This is an excellent read for anyone who desires to grow in their faith.
This was a relatively easy book to read but to apply it is a different story. The use of illustration and authentic nature of the author’s style I found refreshing. There is a host of discussion questions for personal or group study in the appendix as well as an excellent resource of recommended reading.
I give Dug Down Deep four out of five stars. I recommend it for anyone who is taking series the call of Jesus to “Follow me.”
I received this book free from the publisher through Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Blogging for Books review program. I was not required to write a positive review.
Posted March 19, 2013
Dug Down Deep : Building Your Life on Truths That Last Joshua
Dug Down Deep : Building Your Life on Truths That LastWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
From the Publisher: What are you going to build your life on? Dug Down Deep is systematic theology like you've never seen it before. Readable. Relevant. Powerful. As best-selling author Joshua Harris shares his own journey from apathetic church-kid to student with a burning passion to truly know God, you'll be challenged to dig deep into the truths of God's word. With humor, conviction and compelling insight Dug Down Deep covers the basics of faith--God, scripture, Jesus, the cross, salvation, sanctification, the Holy Spirit and the church. Don't settle for superficial faith, dig deep.
Review: This was a good, easily read systematic theology book. I found the author’s journey to be very interesting and blended well with his theology. He is able to explain his understanding of theology to be transparent and well developed. I agree with much of his theology and am encouraged that younger people are holding to a Biblical theology by using the whole Bible and not parts of it. He has a fantastic story of mentorship and friendship with CJ Mahaney which is encouraging. Too often today people are coming up with Theology that is ‘new’ and this man has embraced the historical doctrine from the Bible.
I would like to thank Above the Trees and Multnomah for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone.
Posted November 13, 2012
What a great primer on Systematic Theology!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I finally finished Dug Down Deep by Joshua Harris. Pastor Harris is the author who is probably best known in evangelical circles as the guy who wrote I Kissed Dating Goodbye. But Josh is so much more than just that first book. He has written on courtship and marriage, purity issues and the importance of a vibrant connection to a local church as well.
Dug Down Deep was one of those books that once I finally read it, I regretted having let it sit on my shelves for almost two years. It is an excellent resource and one I would especially recommend to those who have never read any systematic theology like Wayne Grudem's Introduction to Biblical Doctrine. Josh intersperses stories and illustrations throughout this book to help bring out both the importance of knowing God through the systematic study of doctrine as well as the application of these truths to every day life.
I especially enjoyed the last chapter where Harris asks and answers the question, 'What should studying truth do to us?" This section alone should be read by every young man entering Bible college or seminary as it addresses the struggle between being passionate about the new truths you are learning and being compassionate with others that may disagree or be a bit behind you on their journey.
I found myself laughing at times, wanting to cry sometimes but mostly wanting to shout these things from the rooftop as I read through this book. I will definitely be giving a copy to our youth pastor and recommending he consider using it to teach the young adults in our church. Pick up a copy of this book and make your way through it. You will not be disappointed.
*I was provided a free copy of this book by LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program in exchange for an unbiased free review. Provided by LibraryThing's Early Reviewers Program.
Posted August 22, 2012
Keeping it Fresh
Josh Harris tries to keep it fresh in his book Dug Down Deep. It goes to show you that even if you are successful in the Evangelical World and not really know the Living Christ. He states that he knew some tradition and some morality but knowing the one who saves is the key. As Tim Challies says I would recommend this to any Christian.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 20, 2012
How would you like to read a book on systematic theology that y
How would you like to read a book on systematic theology that you could enjoy, learn from, and constantly forget that you were reading a book on theology? In this volume that is exactly what you will get. There's real depth here but it's sprung on you subtly. The cumulative amount of doctrine taken in will surprise you by book's end. In our day when Christians would rather face an IRS audit than read a book on systematic theology, this book has great potential. In fact, I don't think large theology books are read by anyone outside the categories of pastor or scholar, and probably few pastors have read such a work in years. This book will allow you to think of the great subjects again.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Mr. Harris can write. There's no question about that. When he uses the example of rumspringa from the Amish world in chapter one to lure us in, I was caught a third of the way in. We realize the gap between what we say we believe and what we do is often helplessly far apart. This could be because we have never really grasped what the Bible is saying to us as we have imagined we have. Another hint: Jesus Christ is part of the answer no matter what the question is.
I loved how he used his story and the earlier story of his father to tell this story. That's how he pulls it off. The story is captivating and doctrine woven through it. When you finish the story, you think, wow, that was interesting. Then as you think about it, you find yourself wrestling with the greatest doctrines.
He begins with the doctrine of the Bible as a foundation to decide our beliefs. He reads well and is never superficial. From there he makes us face the doctrine of Christ. Next he carefully draws a realistic picture of the depths of the tragedy of sin in us. How our age needs this discussion! We forget how badly we need Jesus because we haven't fully comprehended the mess we are in.
In chapter 7 the chapter is as good as its catchy title: "How Jesus Saved Gregg Eugene Harris". I think you will find it quite similar to the story of how Jesus saved you. There's no overt Calvinism in the chapter though you suspect he believes that regeneration precedes your putting faith in Christ. Still, the chapter was thought-provoking. In his chapter on the Holy Spirit I was absolutely shocked that he, to some degree, looked favorably on speaking in tongues. Had the few sentences that spoke of that been deleted, you would find an exceptionally balanced presentation of the doctrine of the Spirit.
The book works on every level. He even addresses common misunderstanding that are driving the Christian world and how they don't quite mesh with God's Word. As a pastor, I found the book personally rewarding. It was review, it was more perspective, and it seemed to suggest dozens of sermon ideas. Beyond that, I recommend Christians every where read this book and mine its treasures.
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 .
Posted January 23, 2012
A great primer to the foundations of Christian Faith
Dug Down Deep: Building Your Life on Truths That Last by Joshua HarrisWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Having read Harris’s other books growing up I was familiar with his style. Over the years he has progressed and really produced a well written book about the foundations of our faith. Having completed a Master of Art in Religion I found that Harris provided an easy to read explanation of the foundations that are essential to the Christian faith and explained the necessity for understanding them and holding to them in your life. He used real life examples and explanations to make the book come alive to the reader and help them realize that they too can understand the “deeper” issues of Christian faith.
The book also has a discussion guide provided which is an added bonus as often that is an extra cost.
I found that I was constantly highlighting and agreeing with the points and explanations that were made by Harris. This book is now an added resource to my library to help me understand how to explain to others the Christian faith in ways that I may not have thought of before.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review
Posted November 26, 2011
my soul was encouraged...
Reviewed by Donna M for Readers FavoriteWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
"Dug Down Deep" is a memoir about a man's journey with God. "Dug Down Deep" gives great insight into how we grow and develop individually as Christians. The author is funny, and knowledgeable about God's Word. He gives wonderful examples to illustrate our growth process as Christians. He also shows the great potential we have to experience the love of God and he manages to be frank about our vulnerabilities and the challenges we face as growing Christians. I especially like how he took us into the world of the Amish. I learned many things I never knew.
I must admit that when I first started reading this book, I felt a little hurt. I made the mistake of comparing my life with Harris¿s life. And to make things worse, I did this with my natural eyes and not my spiritual eyes. Big mistake! I had somehow come to the erroneous conclusion that much of Harris's blessings were because he was a white man in America, who is afforded the opportunities that many of us may not have access to. But of course we all know that all blessings come from God whether we like who or what God blesses or not. I had a hard time wrapping my head around the fact that somebody could actually have the opportunity to run a magazine at 21 years of age. So obviously Harris has a life experience that is totally different than mine. So, in my humanness I felt a little hurt. I desired some of the same opportunities as Harris. I have been praying for a husband since I could breathe. OK, I admit it, I was kind of jealous. Opps! If I would have let my mind and heart linger on these points then I could have missed Harris's point completely, which is to dig down deep into the Word of the Lord and let it rule your life.
Therefore, my soul was encouraged by "Dig Down Deeper". As I read, l realized that even though Joshua and I come from two different worlds there was in fact a great equalizer. And that equalizer was the Word of God. It did not matter if we lived in the castles of America or in the devastation of the inner cities. Following the narrow pathway is hard for everybody no matter our race, creed, or social standing. Rich or poor, we all still have to somehow find our way through the eye of the needle. Americans can erroneously believe that to be rich is to have it all. And I'm not saying that Harris is rich. Richness, like reality, can sometimes be relevant. Certainly, money gives us more options and maybe we feel kind of powerful because we can do whatever we want if we have money. Perhaps when we have money and success it¿s easier to get caught up in self pride and come to falsely believe that we accomplished our goals through our own merits.
Posted October 31, 2011
Orthodoxy.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Those simple words are enough to make many people afraid, uncomfortable and wanting to look for the nearest exit. Though the words are common in churches and Christian circles, there is often something overwhelming and almost mystical about them. We've heard them a million times, but the majority of us couldn't truly explain them even if we were offered a large sum of money.
In his book, Dug Down Deep, Pastor Joshua Harris tries to put these terms and their application into language we can all understand and relate to. After growing up in the church and going through the motions of being a "good" Christian, Harris realized that it's so much more than that; it's all about following God's word and standing firm in them. Dug Down Deep is a mixture of his journaling about this revelation and some teaching about doctrine, theology and orthodoxy.
At times the book went a little over my head but that might be attributed to the fact that I was usually reading it late at night when I should have been sleeping! ? Despite that fact, I found the book to be very conversational, not preachy or textbook-ish. I really enjoyed the stories and illustrations, both in words and in pictures, Harris shared throughout the book. I think this could definitely be a book that I'll re-read at a later point in life; there are so many truths hidden in it that I'm sure to find more with each additional reading.
Disclaimer: I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to provide a positive review.
Posted October 19, 2011
Starts Out Good, Gets Boring
I've been tempted to read books by Josh Harris ever since I went to high school with a guy by the same name. I had high expectations, and in many ways Harris' book "Dug Down Deep" both lived up to and failed to live up to those expectation.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
In "Dug Down Deep," Harris admonishes readers to make theology a higher priority in their lives. "What we know about God shapes the way we think and live," Harris writes. "What you believe about God's nature - what he is like, what he wants from you, and whether or not you will answer to him - affects every part of your life. Theology matters, because if we get it wrong, then our whole life will be wrong."
With several references to Wayne Grudem's "Systematic Theology" (bringing back many memories for those of us who had to read it over and over again in college), Harris' book becomes a mini "Systematic Theology" written for Christians not normally interested in extensive research. Consequently, Harris uses more stories and less Scripture.
For many, Harris' words will be sweet reminders of truths they already know. Others will be bored with the theology presented because they also already know the basic. And hopefully, many Christian young in their faith will learn many new truths. No matter how readers view the theology presented, Harris' words should spur them on to a greater desire to know theology, to know the reason for their faith. Harris' compelling argument for the need to have a solid knowledge of doctrine and theology makes his book work on so many levels.
While not a textbook by Grudem, "Dug Down Deep" navigates the foundations of the Christian faith, among them being sin, Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Church.
Harris' discussion of the Holy Spirit may raise the hairs on the backs of some readers. Harris makes it clear that, while he does not adhere to some of the manipulative and false teaches of some Charismatic churches, he does believe in and practice the speaking of tongues. His belief may discredit him to some or at least disappoint certain fans. To his credit, though, Harris emphasizes the common denominator of both sides of the argument: opening your life to the Holy Spirit so that He can change you, use you, and bless you. Harris even references another writer who does not believe in the modern existence of tongues.
My feelings also clashed with the book when I got to Harris' chapter on the church. I would have been encouraged by more on why its important to attend church and become a part of a community, but, instead, Harris focuses on the Great Commission and the missions side of church, which made me feel inadequate about the gifts that God has given me that glorify Him but don't necessarily involve missions. There were a few other things I wasn't sure what to think about, but I won't mention them here.
Bottom line for me, personally: I got a lot out of the first few chapters encouraging the seeking out of solid theology, but the rest of the book was old news - been there, done that. But I'm sure there are plenty of others out there that need this book. As for me, Harris just made me want to skip his book to go read Grudem.
Posted October 18, 2011
deeply a good book
Joshua Harris is the senior pastor of Covenant Life Church in Portland Oregon, and was a student of C.J. Mahaney who had helped to found that same church. Josh is also the author of several books including I kissed Dating Goodbye and Stop Dating the church.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
His latest book is actually a reprint that now comes with a study guide and a fancy cover. I got this book as a "freebie" to review, but I am so glad I picked this one up.
Joshua's book is sort of a beginner's guide to doctrine. Through each chapter, Josh takes the reader alongside his own personal journey all the while expressing deep theological truths. Dug Down Deep covers the nature of the trinity, the Holy Spirit, atonement, sin, the sovereignty of God, propitiation and regeneration. That to say, it's not some thin drop in the bucket either - this is a real book - it has weight and substance (and hand drawn monster pictures).
While I was reading it, I was thinking, "I am going to buy this book for everyone who becomes a believer at my church." I think this would make a great 'guide' for people new to the faith, because it covers all the bases and would get new Christians off on solid footing.
Josh writes, "The doctrine of Scripture teaches us about the authority of God's Word. Scripture must be the final rule of faith and practice for our lives. Not our feelings or emotions. Not signs or prophetic words or hunches."
The book reads easy as much of it are stories from Josh's life, but at the same time the author gives a very orthodox outline of the basic Christian faith. I loved this book - highly recommended.
Posted September 23, 2011
Recently, I was talking with a man in my congregation. He told me that a Pastor had once told him to study hard but don't mess around with theology, you will never understand it. Not only do I disagree with that statement, I think Dug Down Deep proves my point.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Joshua Harris takes a subject (systematic theology) and makes its accessible to everyone. Not only that, he also tells us why it is important to all of us. The strength of his book lies in his approach. He explores how he grew deeper with God in his own way.
Harris is transparent, smart, and has a passion for people to truly dig deeper into their faith. The foundation that remains after taking this journey with him, will help any Christian grow in their relationship with God and understand who they rely on and why. I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. All opinions are my own.
Posted September 12, 2011
Dug Down Deep
Joshua Harris, in his new book, "Dug Down Deep; Building Your Life on Truths That Last" tells a personal growth story through the lens of a familiar parable told by Jesus Christ. He uses the story of two builders. One builder built his house upon the sand. The storm come against it and it fell. The other builder built his house upon a rock. The storm come against it and it stood. Dug Down Deep is a call for every believer to dig down and understand what God wants them to know that will lead them into a deeper and richer relationship with Him. Harris maintains hat superficial understanding of the Bible will not hold when tried and tested by the storms of life. The opening statement of the book sets the stage for the rest. Harris writes, " We're all theologians. The question is whether what we know about God is true." Harris writes that doctrine, the proper understanding of God and what He is like, coupled with orthodoxy, the proper practice of what we know to be true about God, will make or break a believers walk with Christ. Harris deals with doctrinal matters in a way that takes them out of the classroom and places them into real-life practice. In each of his chapters, he deals with a different doctrinal discipline and makes it easy to understand. A few of those doctrines are: God, Jesus Christ, Salvation, the Bible, Sanctification, the Holy Spirit, and the Church. I appreciate the path in which Harris took in writing this book. He has built the case for every believer becoming a student of God's Word and not being afraid of digging deep. This book is well written, it is deep, but not overly academic. His personal story woven throughout the book is what makes the book believable. The study guide that is included in the book is a great tool for small group study. I highly recommend this book. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Waterbrook Multnomah 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."Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 22, 2011
Fantastic book:must read
As Christians, we nearly all have sang the song "The Wise Man Built His House Upon The Rock." as children, and as we grew older, we already had presumed that we were the wise man. Is this always true? In this theologically brilliant book, Joshua Harris reveals that not all Christians have a solid foundation. He then proceeds to show some important doctrines that every Christian should agree with, such as "Jesus is the Son of God." and others of this simplicity. He uses both humorous examples and his own true stories to prove his point, all the while showing the truth within the message.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I can not agree with Josh Harris more. Every Christian should cement their foundational beliefs and doctrines, lest they be washed away by a storm. Even if they don't completely agree with all of the beliefs written in the book, this book still is a great reminder to be prepared with our doctrines fully ready for any storm the devil throw our way, so we can come out of our house after the storm without even a dent of damage. Overall, I thought it was a great book. I am still a huge fan of Joshua Harris's, and Alex and Brett Harris for that matter. I have loved all of their books that I have read. Josh has done it yet again with this wonderfully sound theological manuscript.
Posted May 20, 2011
Great for New Believers
Joshua Harris, author of "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" has written a new book entitled "Dug Down Deep." In his new book Josh sets out to explain about theology and doctrine and how it is vital to the Christian faith. This book is written in a very clear format, step by step about what theology and doctrine and in a clear explanation of why it is important.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
However, I found this book to be a bit boring. I believe this book is great for new Christians and offers a lot of good information, but it didn't really hold my attention. This book is a great starting place for many new Christians and offers real life experience from Josh as he seeks a deeper knowledge and understanding of doctrine while explaining to readers difficult concepts. In addition, this book includes an in-depth study guide, which makes it even more understandable for new believers.
In one part of the book Josh states, " I know from experience that it's possible to be a Christian but live life on the surface .The surface can be an empty tradition. It can even be doctrine without application." These quotes challenged me to go to a deeper level, but again, I believe this book covers many basics of the faith. It was a great refresher, but not a book that I truly enjoyed.
Thanks to Waterbrook Multnomah publishing company for providing me this complimentary book to review. These opinions are my own, they did not pay me for this review.
Posted November 8, 2011
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Posted May 31, 2011
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Posted September 4, 2011
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Posted November 4, 2011
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