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Written in Stone: The Ten Commandments and Today's Moral Crisis Paperback – June 1, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The holy nature of God and the fallen nature of man collide at the tablets of stone bearing the ten commandments of God. With pastoral care and clarity, Dr. Phil Ryken applies timeless theological insights to his exposition of God's eternal moral law. Read Written in Stone and the fear of God and the love of God will meet with thanksgiving as the spirit of God writes his law upon your heart." --Peter Lillback, President, Westminster Seminary, Philadelphia

"One of the best popular, practical, and Christ-centered treatments of God's comprehensive moral law available. Providing the right balance between law and gospel, it shows how to use God's law as a mirror to expose our sin and a map to guide our conduct." --Joel Beeke, President, Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary

"A tour de force for our times and a much-needed word of clarity in a time of moral confusion. It serves as an antidote to contemporary misrepresentations of the Ten Commandments and a powerful exhortation to biblical Christianity." --R. Albert Mohler Jr., President, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

About the Author

Philip Graham Ryken is President of Wheaton College and was Senior Minister of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia for ten years.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: P & R Publishing (June 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1596382066
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596382060
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #757,649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Philip Graham Ryken (PhD, University of Oxford) is the 8th president of Wheaton College and, prior to that, served as senior minister at Philadelphia's historic Tenth Presbyterian Church. He has written several books for Crossway, and has lectured and taught at universities and seminaries worldwide. Dr. Ryken and his wife, Lisa, live in Wheaton and have five children.

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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Rodney Tripp on February 18, 2004
Format: Paperback
In this book, Pastor Ryken offers basic principles for interpreting and applying God's law and explain these holy words... commandment by commandment, illustrating each with biblical account and relating each to the person and redemptive work of Jesus Christ. This book should be read along with your bible and savored with reflection. I could hardly put the book down...from the first page to the end. Gods holiness and his standards for life are clearly related, and the joy of living by Gods law is vividly portrayed. His explanation on the The Ten Commandment open my eyes up to the deep meaning of the law. Readers will find themselves examining their own lives, changing their ways, and delighting in the grace of God.
This book is, Highly Recommended. Great Commentary for any home library. One book you will want to come back to so that you can refresh your memory. My next book and my suggestion to you will be Ryken's The Communion of Saints
Tripp
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By David C. Leaumont on July 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
First, I do not agree with Brother Ryken on all theological issues put forth in this book. Despite that, I think he has written a superbly beneficial book based on Scripture. His ideas on the Law and how it applies to Christians today is a very sound idea. He divides the Law into 3 categories, Ceremonial, Civil and Moral Law. He states that the Moral Law applies to us today while the others were tied to the Israelites alone, which I could not agree with more. He makes a great argument for why the 10 Commandments still apply to us today and writes a moderately Reformed book. I disagree with his ideas of predestination (I believe Scripture but have a different interpretation, but we both find God to be completely sovereign).

Brother Ryken goes through each of the 10 Commandments in a separate chapter. He makes sound Scriptural references to show why these still apply today.

Brother Ryken has a full set of notes at the end of the book to guide us in further reading while giving deeper tangential inputs that would not fit well in the main text of the book. He also adds 2 indices- a Scriptural index and a General index.

Ryken's basis in writing is that we do not keep God's law in order to be saved. We have been saved by grace alone through faith in Christ alone. But why are we saved? To glorify God, which we do by keeping his commandments. John 14:15.

Whether you are Reformed, Evangelical, Charismatic, Catholic or simply identify as Christian, this book will benefit you on your Walk and will help you know more about how we should act as Christians.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Angela J. Zaev on August 29, 2009
Format: Paperback
Philip Graham Ryken has presented a masterful exposition of the Ten Commandments in "Written in Stone: The Ten Commandments and Today's Moral Crisis." In the preface he states that"[f]ew things are more difficult to master than the biblical teaching about the law in its relationship to the gospel," yet that is indeed what he has done remarkably well in this most excellent book.

This is not to say that the book is easy to read as God's Law is not to be handled lightly, but instead with fear and trepidation; that is, if we truly seek to understand the full extent of the law and how we are to respond to it. On page 28 Pastor Ryken reminds the reader that "[m]any Christians think that the law is somehow opposed to the gospel." This was my own thinking at one point. Like so many others, I had also "assumed that in the Old Testament salvation came by the law whereas in the New Testament salvation comes by grace. But the truth is that salvation has always come by grace, and the law and the gospel work together for salvation in both testaments" [page 28].

The author lays out 3 uses of the Law:

1. The law teaches God's people how to live
2. The law restrains human sin on society
3. The law, like a mirror, shows of our need for a savior

The first two chapters provide the reader with an overview and argument for the need to study God's Law as well as to clarify some commonly held notions as mentioned earlier in this review. In the third chapter, Pastor Ryken discusses how we ought to approach the Scriptures and explains the biblical rule of interpretation and how one goes about using Scripture to interpret Scripture. The remaining chapters, with the exception of the final one, are each devoted to one of the Ten Commandments.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Malham on September 9, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In preperation for my fall adult bible class I asked our minister to recomend some resources. Written In Stone, was one of them. I have been pouring over this book all summer and will be leading my class though this material over the next few months.

I thought I knew the 10 Commandments, but quickly learned that I didn't have a full appreciation until I read this book. It is great and I have been deeply blessed by reading it. I highly recomond it. God Bless.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mike Robinson on June 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
The only consistent basis for ethics is God's word, the Bible. And Philip Graham Ryken in "Written in Stone: The Ten Commandments and Today's Moral Crisis" has delivered a potent volume on the necessity of the Decalogue. Pastor Ryken expounds the three central uses of the Law: Driving the sinner to the Savior; the believer's sanctification; and the restraining of evil in civil life.

Within this very readable volume the author furnishes relevant study questions for additional application and this helps make it an outstanding home-group bible study or family devotional resource. Ryken presses the need of the law, yet makes the clear distinction between works and grace as he propounds that one is saved by grace alone.

Romans 11:6 "And if by grace, then it is no longer of works; otherwise grace is no longer grace. But if it is of works, it is no longer grace; otherwise work is no longer work."

I would add: The Ten Commandments are the foundation for good, just laws and righteous ethical codes. All other systems are inconsistent, and allow evil to intermingle in culture. Muslim societies prohibit freedom and legislate the execution of those who disagree with Islam. In the Muslim nation of Iran, a man got arrested for teaching people to dance. Hinduism, for over two thousand years, legalized the burning of widows in the funeral pyre of their deceased husbands. Charles Spurgeon recounted the story of a Hindu woman that told a missionary: "Surely your Bible was written by a woman." The missionary asked her: "Why do you assert that?" She responded: "Because it says so many kind things about women. Our religion never refers to women except in reproach.
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