Sunday, October 20, 2013

Book Review: Boot Camp

Boot Camp: Equipping Men with Integrity for Spiritual Warfare (The IMAGE Series). By Jason Hardin. DeWard Publishing Company: Chillicothe, Ohio. 2009. 240 pp.

Every once in a while I pick up a book that has an appealing cover, a good title, and a basic premise that resonates with me. Boot Camp is one of those books. Unfortunately, what comes after the cover left me deeply unsatisfied. I wish I could keep a bunch of positive praise on this book, and my negative reaction to it is not because of heresy or false teaching, but rather with the way the book is written. I can't believe I'm writing this, but the author uses too much Scripture.

I submit for you a photo of two pages in this book that are fairly representative of the amount of Scripture he includes with his writing. 
(Click to enlarge)

I admit that I've highlighted a quote from Isaac Watts, but it is still something that he has quoted and is not original to him. My main contention with the author is that I question whether or not he actually has anything worth saying on the subject. I estimate that at least 25% of the book is nothing but reprinted Scripture. There are many books available that list Scripture for various topics. The point of those books is to aggregate many Bible verses for quick and easy reference. There are other books available that speak to the issues that particularly apply to men. This book seems like an attempt to merge the two. Just as many people are not ready for Westerns with aliens, I am not ready for this kind of book.

I believe that everything we say should be heavily influenced by the Bible. But I think we would all feel a little cheated if our pastor came week after week and did nothing but read straight from the Bible during his sermon. At some point you would ask yourself, does the pastor have anything valuable to say? As I read through Boot Camp, I kept asking myself that question again and again. Does the author have anything to say? What is the point of writing a book if you have nothing original to say?

I was greatly excited about reading this book, but it this point I would recommend finding something else to read. Check out Every Man's Battle. Pick up The Character of Leadership. This one is not worth your time.

I received this book from the publisher for the purpose of review. The opinions expressed are (obviously) my own.
(The next two pages)

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