Biblical Answers to Contemporary Issues. By Charles C. Ryrie. Chicago: Moody Press, 1991. 134 pp. Paper, $7.99.
Dr. Charles Ryrie, former professor of Systematic Theology at Dallas Theological Seminary, has written scores of books over the years, and this small but extremely practical volume surely ranks among the most profitable. The book contains thirteen concise chapters, each evaluating a current moral, ethical, or theological issue from a biblical point of view. These issues include capital punishment, women’s rights, divorce, racism, suicide, abortion, evolution, and homosexuality.
The reader will find this book to be extremely helpful. Ryrie’s concise but warm style encourages the reader by demonstrating that God’s ancient Word is truly timeless, giving us direct guidance to help us to wisely face each of the difficult modern issues examined. Ryrie’s talent for organizing and outlining complex material in an easy-to-understand and concise form is at a premium in this work.
The first ten issues/chapters originally were published in 1974 under the title You Mean the Bible Teaches That? This newer work (1991) reprints this valuable information and adds three new chapters dealing with homosexuality, financial debt, and the issue of alcohol and other drugs. This new material is both topical and extremely worthwhile. On homosexuality, Ryrie refuses to water down the clear biblical denunciation of all homosexual activity as sin. On the subject of financial debt, he takes a sensible position, generally warning against a believer going into debt, but recognizing (with some qualifiers) the possible legitimacy of using credit as a tool in certain situations. On alcohol and drugs, Ryrie sounds a clear biblical warning against the sin of intoxication without teaching that all of the believers in the Bible were total abstainers.
Ryrie’s organization of each issue in every chapter could easily lend itself to excellent outlines for a sermon series, a Sunday School class, or a discipleship group/home Bible study. This book will brief new believers biblically on these vital current issues and would be an ideal refresher course for more mature Christians. I recommend it highly.
Tanglewood Bible Fellowship