My Review of, “Romans Roadblocks” by Josiah Nichols.

In Josiah Nichols’ new book, “Romans Roadblocks, Using Hermeneutics to Discover the Essentials of the Christian Faith” you’ll follow him along through the first chapter of Romans while he demonstrates, and employs hermeneutics to exposit the text. This book is not intended for academia, nor is it a tedious comprehensive study of Biblical hermeneutics. In Romans Roadblocks you will learn about Biblical hermeneutics by following along as Josiah employs the methods of hermeneutics to the text.

Some may find more scholarly works difficult to follow or understand. If you’ve been studying the Bible for any amount of time, you might find out by reading this book that you were already practicing some of the methods of hermeneutics without knowing it. You might also discover where you have been making errors in your study and interpretation.

One thing that will become evident is how interconnected scripture is to scripture. You’ll see Josiah cross reference texts to other texts in different sections of the Bible for context when those cross references are justified by citation or some other requisite.

As the title implies, the essentials of the Christian faith are in view here. If you follow the author along through the book, you will learn about the topics listed in the table of contents. (The author labeled it as outline.)

Chapter 1 Biblical Hermeneutics
Chapter 2 Saul Called Paul
Chapter 3 Biblical Audience: Church in Rome
Chapter 4 Studying the Book of Romans
Chapter 5 What the Passage Says
Chapter 6 Christian Identity
Chapter 7 The Gospel’s Authority in Holy Scripture
Chapter 8 God’s Fully-Divine and Fully-Human Son
Chapter 9 The Resurrection is the Declaration of the Son of God
Chapter 10 The Trinity
Chapter 11 The Results of the Gospel and the Obedience of Faith
Chapter 12 Blessings of the Gospel
Bibliography

By, “unpacking” scripture along with Josiah you will find that theology is something we all do. You can’t have a thought about God without it being theology. Hopefully, after going through the steps, and seeing the theology revealed in the scriptures, you will have a better grasp of the fundamentals of the faith. I think you will.

A Snyder’s Soapbox Review of, “When my Ox Gores my Neighbor: Using Hermeneutics to Travel from Mt. Sinai to Mt. Zion” by Josiah Nichols.

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I was contacted by a mutual friend to do this review. Up until that point I had not heard of Josiah Nichols. This would be the first work that I have read of his. It might also be his first published work. It isn’t a long book, nor is it a book that requires a seminary education to read. The author’s purpose is to demonstrate how he employs hermeneutics to interpret, and derive applications from Exodus 21:28-32. The book is very evangelistic. I would say that it has been far more evangelistic than many theological books that I’ve recently read.

From reading the title, and the author’s intended goal treating the topic of hermeneutics, I expected a more in depth primer on hermeneutics, and a demonstration of the analytical methods of hermeneutics on the cited verses. While the author accomplished this goal, I think occasionally the author also got a little lost in some peripheral details.

It is also evident that the author is a big fan of Wretched Radio/TV and their work. Todd Friel is the host of the programs as well as the podcast. The people over there at Wretched have put out a number of very useful videos, and educational products. Josiah refers to, “Hermen Who?” numerous times throughout the book. Wretched should thank him for the plug 🙂 I liked both the book, and Wretched. I am a big fan of their work to, so I share that with the author.

The questions I consider for book purchases are, is it theologically accurate, and will it add value to the individual’s Christian library? That’s it. That’s how simple it is for me to decide, “yes” or “no” for a book. The answer to the first question is, yes this book is good and accurate if you are Reformed in your soteriology. If you are not, it is still accurate, and you are the one with the problem lol.  As far as value goes, it does add value to your library as a resource to loan out. This book is evangelistic. I would feel good handing this to someone who is new in the faith. It will teach them a bit about hermeneutics, and much more about other doctrines of God.

After reading it, I am still hard pressed to categorize this book, or write a more fitting title. The author does analyze Exodus 21:28-32. He does so accurately. He did not twist the scripture, or impose a meaning on it that was not intended by the author of scripture. It would be educational for a new Christian. I believe that was his intended audience. I look forward to seeing Josiah’s future projects. I think we will see bigger and better works from him. He was precise and nuanced without being rhetorical. Some theological books for laymen seem as if the authors had forgotten who their audience was. If Josiah reads this, “Keep up the good work.” You can pick up a copy of his book at Amazon, Christianbook, or Westbow to name a few. It can be purchased from many other online book retail sites.

ISBN-13: 978-1512782530