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Heaven is Not My Home: Learning to Live in God's Creation [Paperback]

By Paul Marshall (Author) & Lela Hamner Gilbert (With)
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Item description for Heaven is Not My Home: Learning to Live in God's Creation by Paul Marshall & Lela Hamner Gilbert...

In Heaven Is Not My Home, author and scholar Paul Marshall asserts that God is not seeking to destroy the earth, but to restore it to its original splendor. In this thought-provoking book, he shows us how the redemption of all things should shape the way we look at every aspect of our lives. For Ingest Only - Data needs to be cleaned up for all products being loaded

Citations And Professional Reviews
Heaven is Not My Home: Learning to Live in God's Creation by Paul Marshall & Lela Hamner Gilbert has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Christianity Today - 06/01/2003 page 40

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Thomas Nelson Publishers
Pages   288
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.66" Width: 5.46" Height: 0.72"
Weight:   0.84 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Feb 17, 2001
Publisher   Thomas Nelson Publishers
ISBN  0849990408  
ISBN13  9780849990403  

Availability  151 units.
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More About Paul Marshall & Lela Hamner Gilbert

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Paul Marshall is Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute's Center for Religious Freedom. Lela Gilbert is a freelance writer and editor who has authored or co-authored more than sixty published books. Roberta Green Ahmanson is an award-winning journalist and co-author of Islam at the Crossroads.

Paul Marshall currently resides in Washington, in the state of District Of Columbia. Paul Marshall was born in 1948 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Department of Allied Health Sciences Leeds College of Health Studies L.

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1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living > General
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living
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Reviews - What do customers think about Heaven is Not My Home: Learning to Live in God's Creation?

The Bible says, God's Word is a "lamp to my feet and a light for my path" (Ps.119:105) But do you stare at the lamp? No. You don't buy a flashlight so you can hold it up to your face and stare into it. The purpose of a lamp is to illuminate other things. In the same way, God's Word is meant to be a light for revelation of God and on His creation. The Word of God helps us to see properly the world that God has made.

We don't find great details about buildings, or marriages, or music, or physics in the Word of God. But in the light of the Word, we can study the world and learn about such things. Because our minds have been darkened by sin, it is only in the light of God's Word that we can understand the creation as it is. (Rom. 1:20, 21). Without a sound knowledge of the Word of God, we are left with a distorted view of God's handiwork.

God's Word is more than a light; it is a light on a path. It is meant to shine on the way before us. We don't stare into our flashlight. We point it forward and down, hitting the ground about six feet ahead. We shine it on the path before us because we want to see where we are going. It helps us see the stones, cracks, gullies, and slopes so we know where to place our feet without falling.

Paul Marshall wrote: "As we study the Scriptures we need to shine them on the questions that lie before us on our pilgrimage. This includes not only questions concerning our personal life and the church, but also the farmer's questions of how and what to plant or how to make our daily bread, and for all of us, how to deal with fields, factories, studies, politics."

He continues: "We ought to study not only God's Word but also God's world; we study the world in the light of the Word. We need to study not only Isaiah but also industry. Not only Philemon but also politics. Not only Acts but arts. It is not for us to choose between knowing the Bible or the world; we need to know the world biblically."

"What is so important to learn from Scripture is the connection between human responsibility and human freedom. We are bound to the Word of God and free to work out our service to God. Throughout Scripture we can find a continued story of human development in life and society. People everywhere continue to create new things. This cultural development does not stop at the end of biblical revelation. The command to fill the earth and bring forth fruit shows us that historical changes and development are very real, very much part of God's intention for human life."

"We are called by God to create to develop, and to adapt what is about us in response to the guidance that God has given us. The nature of being human, or being made in the image of God, is that we are given responsibility for the earth. And real responsibility often comes when the answer is not obvious, when the laws and rules leave open several options, or when many different laws and rules apply at the same time. We are not just interpreters but also judges or deciders."

"We have to make real decisions about how we can put flesh on what God has shown us to be the path of peace, hope, stewardship, and justice. God gives us real responsibility. Our responsibility is both frightening and challenging. We cannot shrink from it."

I commend Paul Marshall's book to you.
Terrific book on the Christian's earthly responsibilities  Aug 4, 2003
The author definitely chose a provocative title for this book. I hope that no one avoids it because of the title. If you read between the lines you can see that he is not denying the biblical doctrine of the eternal state. In fact, I thought that another way of titling the book could have been "Disembodied existence somewhere in an ethereal third dimension is not my destiny."

The view that many Christians have is that, after this life, our souls go to heaven and we walk streets of gold, wearing white robes and singing hymns for eternity. What Marshall does is show that our eternal destiny may in fact look a bit more like our current earthly existence than we realize.

Marshall correctly brings out the biblical teaching that the created order is basically good, and therefore it can be embraced. Sin is not the essence of the creation, sin is an imposter.

Because many Christians have wrongly interpreted Biblical passages on the world and worldliness we have adopted an attitude that sees this world as something evil at worst, or unnecessary at best. Either way, this world and this earth and this creation are to be avoided or endured until the time when we will be freed from all of it.

However, Marshall shows very well that sin is to be removed from the creation, the creation itself is not destined to perish. He demonstrates that this creation is destined for renewal, not eradication. Eternity will be spent in a new heavens and a new earth.

Such a view has implications for how we live now. Our work, our rest, our play, our culture, our politics, and all human activity has value. We are to embrace our earthly callings. He makes the comment that all honest work is pleasing to God. Paul tells us - wheter we eat or drink, do all to the glory of God.

All of life can be and should be done to the glory of God.

One weakness of the book is that he does go overboard on showing that this earth is our home. I once had a professor who said that when a ship is listing badly to the right, you don't jump up and down in the center to get it straightened out. You jump up and down on the left. I think this is what Marshall has done here - he has seen how the church has overdone it on the otherworldliness and is trying to get us back on course about our responsibilities in the here and now. As such, he doesn't deal adequately with the verses that speak of our identity as pilgrims, strangers, aliens, etc..

With this minor weakness I still have no problem giving the book 5 stars. It is a beneficial and necessary read for Christians.

An excellent summary of much good Christian thinking  Jun 28, 2002
This book is insightful, readable, enjoyable, and brilliant. I will recommend it to many friends. Marshall summarized many of my thoughts about modern Christianity, and challenged me to take the Kingdom call of God more seriously in my everyday life. Highly recommended.
Lacking in consistency and abundant in contradiction  Sep 27, 2000
Paul Marshall, in talking about the Christian faith in relation to the secular world, does make some solid, practical points. However, the consistency of these points varies as each chapter arises, and the importance of work, for example, is as important as play, and rest, and so on. His emphasis is placed on all the wrong things. Yes, he does encourage Christians to acknowledge the need for these physical and spirutal rewards, however, he discredits God in many instances. Man's sole purpose on the earth is NOT to take care of it, although that is a big factor. Man is created to glorify God. Marshall discredits God's omniscence in Chapter 12 by stating, without supporting, that "God was directed by Adam's decision" to name the animals. Here, Marshall in talking about the amount of responsibility placed on Adam, discredits God and ignores God's ubiquitous omniscence. Marshall repeatedly contradicts himself and places man as equals with God, which is just messed up. This book may be helpful to new Christians, as a starting point, but there is much more solid, beautiful literature out there and I strongly recommend that no Christian apply his entire spiritual life around this book.
A Catalyst for Thinking Christianly About God's World  Apr 17, 2000
This book is one of the best introductions to Christian worldview thinking I have read and should prompt one to more robust reflection on the many ways one's commitment to Christ should form all of life. Marshall's treatment is thoroughly biblical, and he writes in an engaging style. He first explains the Reformed pattern of Creation-Fall-Redemption-Consummation and then explores its impact on our learning, our work, our rest, and our play, as well as its implications for how we think about the natural world, politics, the arts, and technology, among other topics. Throughout, he utilizes clear illustrations and helpful applications that make the biblical principles concrete. (For example, his discussion about how to think about the way we dress is alone worth the price of admission.) All told, Heaven Is Not My Home is an excellent catalyst for thinking Christianly about God's world.

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