Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Book Review: Israel's Mission: Becoming a Kingdom of Priests in a Prodigal World with Ray Vander Laan

There are lost sheep out there in our world...people that know that are lost spiritually and need a spiritual Shepherd that will show them the right way and teach them the truth. There are also lost people (sheep) that don't know they are lost and will probably be happy/happier when they are led to the right way and truth. This group and individual teaching/study from "That The World May Know" series focuses on Israel's Mission of being sent out to search for these lost sheep and restoring the ones that have wandered away back to the beth ab (the father's house), through the three-part parable in Luke 15:1-32. It is a five part study that also uses a DVD and Leader's Guide. In the DVD, people are guided through Israel by Ray Vander Laan; they are taught Israel's mission of looking for spiritually lost people. Each lesson in the book has a main teaching and is broken up into an outline about what is taught on the DVD; there are then five days worth of reflection and questions to answer about each of the five subtopics that help open up the Scriptures related to the main topics. The Leader's Guide helps the person leading a group with what to concentrate on during the group learning sessions.

I love the part of this book that teaches that lost sheep that have wandered away are to be looked for, found by, and restored back into the beth ab by their Shepherds/Patriarch. Sheep can become lost from spiritual/family homes due to becoming marginalized from oppression, poverty, being captured by enemies, making bad choices, etc. No matter what the reason is for the sheep wandering away, the Bible is pretty clear that their Shepherds are supposed to look for them, find them, celebrate that they have been found, and restore them back into the beth ab.

This study was very important to me because I have searched for a earthly Shepherd for many years that will  teach me Biblical truth and will not put price tags on my learning and fellowship opportunities (because I can't afford it and I don't want to sit back and watch others be left out because they can't afford it either) but will allow me to give tithe or donations. One of those Shepherds could have been my real Shepherd but he hasn't found me and restored me back to the beth ab yet; or it also could be that my true earthly Shepherd hasn't found me yet and that I will be found some day, like during a time that happened when I was as a teenager and a Shepherd from a Youth Group found me and helped get me started at the congregation he represented. This situation in my adult life, along with what I learned in this study, has really stirred up a passion in me to want to help find the lost after I am found as a spiritually lost adult, and if God will use me to help find the lost. I have started to pray more that the lost will be found and I hope others will also.

I also love the part of the book that teaches about a sulha meal, which is a meal of reconciliation to restore a person back to his/her place and, and the situation is forgotten at the end of the meal and not spoken about again.

I wish I could've been there in person with the group that went to Israel on the DVD but since I am still out there lost and wanting to be found, it was the next best thing for me to learn about Israel's mission to find the lost this through this great teaching series in this book and on this DVD.

Do you have a heart for welcoming and including spiritually lost people in your congregation and life? If not, do you want one? Do you want to help bring these lost people into your congregation and life permanently so they hopefully won't wander away again and be lost again? Please read the book to learn more and I hope the teachings stir your heart like they have mine!

My review = 5 out of 5 stars (if I could give it 500 out  of 5 stars I would!)

I received this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

About the DVD:
What's your mission?

God gave the assignment to His people thousands of years ago: to bring "lost sheep" back into the love and safety of His kingdom. He said to become a "Kingdom of Priests," and put God on display to show the world what He is like. It's still our task today. In this thirteenth volume of the That the World May Know ® film series, you'll glimpse the urgency and rewards of welcoming the strangers and prodigals the Lord longs to embrace. Discover the mission that can give your life - and the lives of those around you - greater meaning than you ever imagined.

Join renowned teacher and historian Ray Vander Laan as he guides you through the lands of the Bible. In each lesson, Vander Laan illuminates the historical, geographical, and cultural context of the sacred Scriptures. Filmed on location in the Middle East and elsewhere, the That the World May Know ® film series will transform your understanding of God and challenge you to be a true follower of Jesus.

Designed for use with That the World May Know: Israel's Mission Discovery Guide.

Filmed on location at these biblically significant sites in Israel and Jordan:

-Back to the Father's House - Negev Desert

-Show Them the Way - Timnah

-Prodigal Sons and Daughters - Qatzrin

-Return from the Far Off Country - Jerash

-Welcome Home - Qatzrin

Purchase a copy here : http://bit.ly/1KsCFRr
About the author:
Ray Vander Laan is the founder of That the World May Know Ministries and creator of the Faith Lessons video series with Focus on the Family. An ordained minister, he holds the chair of biblical cultural studies as a religion instructor at Holland Christian Schools in Holland, Michigan. He and his wife, Esther, have four children and fifteen grandchildren.

Find Ray online:
Book blog tour landing page:

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