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Feelings and Faith: Cultivating Godly Emotions in the Christian Life [Kindle Edition]

Brian S. Borgman
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Weaves together biblical exposition and practical application to demonstrate how emotions relate to the Christian life.

Emotions are a vital part of what it means to be a human being made in the image of God and redeemed in Jesus Christ. But often our emotions confuse and mislead us. So what is the proper place for emotions in a Christian's walk of faith?

In Feelings and Faith Brian Borgman draws from his extensive biblical knowledge and his pastoral experience to help readers understand both divine and human emotions. After laying a biblical foundation he moves on to practical application, focusing on how Christians can put to death ungodly emotional displays and also cultivate godly emotions.

This biblically informed, practical volume is helpful for pastors, counselors, and serious-minded Christians who wish to develop a full-orbed faith that encompasses their emotional life.

Editorial Reviews


"Many professing Christians claim that the way we feel about God is far more important than how we think about God. But many other Christians say feelings are altogether unreliable and unimportant. The way we feel doesn't matter; what really matters is how we think. The truth is, God wants us to avoid both extremes. God wants his people to experience their relationship to him in the way they think and feel. When you think rightly about God, it helps you feel rightly for God. But the reverse is also true: when you feel rightly for God, it also helps you to think rightly about God. True feelings inform true thoughts just as true thoughts inform true feelings. In this excellent book Brian Borgman shows that love for God is more than feelings, but never less. Furthermore, he shows that there is a huge difference between emotionalism and God-centered emotion. If you have been looking for a clear, practical, and balanced book on the appropriate role of feelings in the Christian life, look no further."
Tullian Tchividjian, Founder, LIBERATE; author, One-Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World 

"Brian Borgman has written a wonderfully Christ-centered and God-glorifying book about how, by God's grace, to restore your emotions to God's image. Feelings and Faith paints a biblically accurate picture of, as the Puritan pastors expressed it, 'holy emotions.' It does not dismiss emotions as some do nor does it worship emotions as some do. This is an important book and I highly recommend it."
Martha Peace, Biblical Counselor; Author, The Excellent Wife

"Here is a readable but comprehensive study that unites in biblical friendship the Christian's theology and experience. With the heart of a pastor, Brain Borgman offers an emotional life line that will stabilize your heart and support your faith. Faith and Feelings needs to be in your personal library. I will return to it time and again-so will you!"
Jani Ortlund, Executive Vice President, Renewal Ministries; author, Fearlessly Feminine and His Loving Law, Our Lasting Legacy

"As Christians, who hasn't been confused about the relationship between our faith and our feelings? Are feelings an incredibly important part of your faith, giving you heart-felt ways to express love to God and others, or are they actually to be jettisoned from your faith, being perceived as something dangerous in your relationship to Christ? In this immensely profitable book, Brian Borgman, a very sure-footed guide to this topic, biblically and precisely explains the concept of emotion and how it is to be integrated into one's walk with the Lord. I know of no other book quite like it. All at once, it is Scriptural, wise, clear, pastoral, transparent, and compelling. This is a great resource for instance, for a pastor who desires help in skillfully shepherding his sheep. It is also a wonderful help for a discipler and/or counselor who wants to instruct his disciples and counselees with their fears, worries, and anxieties. Even further, the principles in this work should prove to be of real, lasting value to any believer in Jesus who earnestly yearns to first grasp and then harness his or her own emotions within the context of a sensate culture that is quickly careening out of emotional control. For all who read this book, we should genuinely applaud Pastor Borgman's diligent efforts in now bringing us the most helpful volume available on the subject of Faith and Feelings."
Lance Quinn, Pastor-Teacher, The Bible Church of Little Rock, Little Rock, Arkansas

"Brian Borgman has done a lot of work on this crucial topic and it really shows. Emotion is one of the least understood topics in our Bible studies and churches and this is a strong contribution to the discussion. I am thankful to have read Feelings and Faith and know others will also benefit from it. It has been a privilege to get to know Brian and his pastor's heart for God's people, which shines through clearly on these pages."
Matthew Elliott, Author, Feel: The Power of Listening to Your Heart; Faithful Feelings: Rethinking Emotion in the New Testament

"Martyn Lloyd-Jones taught us that if we see truth clearly, we must feel it. Authentic faith in the supreme, indomitable goodness of God in sending Jesus Christ as our substitute and redeemer necessarily transforms our feelings. The Holy Spirit awakens earnest love for others from a pure heart (I Peter 1:22), joyful acceptance of loss (Heb. 10:34), and cheerful generosity (II Cor. 9:7). Pastor Brian Borgman's Feelings and Faith stands in the great tradition of Desiring God by John Piper and Spiritual Depression by Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Borgman clearly sets forth the foundational role of truth, unpacks a robust theology of Christian experience, and provides examples of how to mortify sinful emotions and cultivate godly ones. I highly recommend this book."
Alex Chediak, Associate Professor of Engineering and Physics, California Baptist University; Author, With One Voice

About the Author

Brian S. Borgman is the founding pastor of Grace Community Church in Minden, Nevada. He earned the DMin from Westminster Seminary California and is the author of My Heart for Thy Cause. He and his wife have three children and live in northwestern Nevada.

Product Details

  • File Size: 448 KB
  • Print Length: 243 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1433503638
  • Publisher: Crossway Books (April 1, 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00295AID8
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #338,230 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical theology at its best! May 9, 2009
Christians are confused about emotions. Some are convinced that we cannot help the way we feel. Others avoid emotions as dangerous gateways to excess, or simply view them as mere by-products of obedience. In "Feelings and Faith" Brian Borgman seeks to lift the fog of confusion and help the Christian understand God's perspective on the emotions.

In Part 1 Borgman lays the theological foundations for understanding the emotions, arguing: (1) that God is an intensely emotional being; (2) that Jesus Christ, as the God-man, is an example to us of a perfect emotional life; (3) that the Word of God is written to stir us emotionally; (4) that the work of Christ involves redeeming the whole man, which includes conforming us emotionally into the image of Jesus Christ himself.

Part 2 examines sanctification and the emotions. Borgman argues convincingly that God commands us to have and display certain emotions while putting to death ungodly emotions. This is bound to challenge the prevailing view that it is impossible to control our emotions. Borgman argues, however, that since the emotions are intimately tied to our beliefs, values, and judgments, renewing one's mind is essential to emotional change.

In Part 3 Borgman describes how to put to death ungodly emotions. He includes individual chapters on (1) sinful anger, (2) unforgiveness and bitterness, (3) fear, anxiety, and worry, and (4) depression. These chapters display unusual insight rooted in Borgman's many years of pastoral ministry. If you want to grow in your own sanctification and help others, these chapters are a goldmine. Finally, Part 4 details many practical ways that the Christian can cultivate godly emotions in their life.

Brian Borgman has given a great and timely gift to the body of Christ.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
We find ourselves in a culture that seems dominated by emotions. Most advertising is geared toward motivating emotions. We are often told to "follow our heart," which roughly means we should do what feels right to us. Unfortunately, there is little difference between the world and the church in this way. Many people choose churches based on how the service makes them feel. Christians often make decisions attributing their feelings to God with little or no thought given to applying God's already revealed Word to their lives. It's as though emotions are above being right or wrong. In Feelings and Faith Brian Borgman explains that emotions can have moral significance and he attempts to show how we can be filled with emotions that glorify God.

After a brief introduction explaining and defining emotions, Feelings and Faith: Cultivating Godly Emotions in the Christian Life begins with the understanding that since we are made in God's image, we must look to the character of God as our guide for our character, including our emotions. Borgman takes the view that God does have emotions (contra the "divine impassibility" view that has been held by many theologians). He consequently explores God's emotions as revealed throughout the Bible and shows how the make-up of our emotions went astray due to the fall.

Our status resulting from the fall naturally leads to who we are in Christ. Borgman progresses to show the necessity of God's authoritative truth for our complete sanctification. He contends that certain truths are essential to our transformation (he refers to them as "oxygen truths" as we cannot grow spiritually without them): the character of God, justification, and future glory.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Book! June 23, 2009
Brian Borgman has produced an invaluable integrative contribution melding these two themes. This volume is well written and well structured. It is theologically sound and substantive, rich in insights, personal and harvested, is practical to the bone, yet delightfully free of any infection of the pervasive psycho-babble that afflicts so many books that focus on feelings. Borgman explodes the common notion that emotions are beyond the reach of address and amendment, but shows that with proper theological grounding our feeling can be brought into proper balance and alignment with Christian standards. This book ought to be in every church and pastor's library.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A solid foundation laid for feelings and faith August 13, 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The author's target audience is the everyday Christian. Borgman penned, "I have tried to write so that a layman could absorb it with profit . . . God's people need to be grounded in his Word, so this book is for those who want to explore what God's Word has to say about the emotions and how those truths apply to our lives. This will require some work." (Page 14)

This is a well-written and biblically substantive book on the subject matter of emotions and the role they play in a person's life. Throughout each chapter, the author presents questions for the reader to personally ponder and apply to his or her life. I really appreciated the fact that Borgman sought to lead the reader into the Scriptures with the aim of "practical theology" that "will require some work" on the reader's behalf (Page 14).

One example where the author integrates a biblical truth and applies it to the reader's situation can be found in Chapter 8, "An Introduction to Mortifying Ungodly Emotions." Borgman states after the reader has done an "honest evaluation" (Pages 97 - 99), he needs to move toward "Confession and Repentance. . . The second basic step, after we have indentified the ungodly emotion such as bitterness, anger, or fear, is to be quick to own it and confess it to the Lord without excuse. Proverbs 28:13 teaches us, "Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy." The mercy comes when we own our sin, stop concealing it or excusing it, and take full responsibility for it. When we do that, the mercy pipe is unobstructed, and we are in a place to receive not only forgiveness (1 John 1:9) but also the grace to change." (Page 99)

I found this book to be very readable and challenging for the layperson. To the person wanting to make the most of this resource, it will require work and digging deeper into the passages used throughout the book. Borgman handles the Scriptures very well.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Good and helpful
Good and helpful, but not quite what I was expecting. Most of what's in this book can be found in a lot of Christian living books dealing with fear, depression, joy, etc. Read more
Published 3 months ago by D. Hughes
5.0 out of 5 stars this book is a must read for today's spiritual leaders...
For far to long the church has lived on two sides of a gap. On one side is are those that claim "truth" as core and good feelings are solely a by product of following... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Doug Seest
5.0 out of 5 stars Kim Lindsey
Rich with teaching that is clear and easily understood which allows for life application. Highly recommend for all that want to understand how our emotion are from and can honor... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Kimberly Lindsey
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great book! Flows well!
Published 5 months ago by David
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book in helping Christians understand the role of emotions...
Wonderful book in helping Christians understand the role of emotions in their lives and the God who created them in His likeness.
Published 7 months ago by Sheila M. Clay
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid Theology
This book gives a biblical view on emotion and presents a sound theology that helps to encourage faith in God's unfailing Word. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Satisfied Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots to benefit from here
I read it once, now I am going through it a second time to take my time to fully digest it. It is so good that I have a lot of it underlined, highlighted, and notes in the margin. Read more
Published 10 months ago by K. Schermerhorn
4.0 out of 5 stars We can have both.
A much needed book. We tend to fall into either side of the walkway, for emotional highs, or for stoic determinism. Pastor Borgman shows us how to avoid either extreme. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Ruth E. Brooks
5.0 out of 5 stars Should be required reading for all christians
This book is a game-changer. Reading this opened my eyes while providing conviction of spirit, soothing of soul, and a deep hunger for more of Christ. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Renee Robinson
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific!
This is an excellent book on feelings and emotions. It deals with the emotions of God especially through Christ's manhood. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Mason H. French
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More About the Author

Brian S. Borgman is the founding pastor of Grace Community Church in Minden, Nevada. He earned the DMin from Westminster Seminary California and is the author of My Heart for Thy Cause, Feelings and Faith and Spiritual Warfare with Rob Ventura. He and his wife have three children and live in northwestern Nevada.

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