Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ Free Shipping
Decisions, Decisions: How (and How Not) to Make Them Paperback – January 21, 2003
All Books, All the Time
Read author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more at the Amazon Book Review. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"Biblical, thoughtful, captivating, and well written. I heartily endorse it as a valuable instrument for your spiritual maturity and discipleship ministry to others." --Harry L. Reeder III
"A helpful book that will keep many from going astray. It will fortify those who wish to preserve the integrity of biblical revelation over against others who falsely lay claim to additional revelation. Get it, enjoy it, believe it!" --Jay Adams
"A provocative treatment of a most difficult subject. As a pastor, I have searched for a book on decision making that is biblically precise, yet practically insightful; I now have one." --Lance Quinn
About the Author
Dave Swavely (MDiv) is a teaching elder in the Presbyterian Church in America. He was the founding pastor of Faith Church in Sonoma, California, and planted a church in the Malvern area near Philadelphia. He has also written Decisions, Decisions: How (and How Not) to Make Them. He coauthored, with Wayne A. Mack, Life in the Father's House: A Member's Guide to the Local Church and, with Harry L. Reeder, From Embers to a Flame: How God Can Revitalize Your Church.
Top customer reviews
When Luther had to decide whether or not to stay or flee when the Vatican put a bounty on his head, there is no specific instruction in the Bible as of what to do. But his decision to escape was attributed ultimately to the sovereign plan of God to spare him through his irresistible influence to draw him toward this decision. According to Swavely, this is when you cross the line of wisdom and desire by considering what the wisest choice is and this consideration should include getting counsels from other people which I don't deny. God gives us brain to be used, as he wrote. Human beings are doubtless responsible for our actions. But who is the ultimate agent beyond every decision but God? And how is God still working today other than through the Holy Spirit? I said this without intending to accuse God of being guilty for evil, not at all. Divine sovereignty is compatible with human responsibility. This is one of the most beautiful mysteries one can ever learn. There is a danger therefore, when claiming that a decision is made through wisdom, desire and counsel, though these are tremendously important, to boast in one's wisdom and godliness, even the wisdom in consulting the Scriptures or doing it the right way; the Swavely way; while the truth is, ultimately it is God, who wills and to act according to his good purposes (Phil 2:13). Or "For by him (referring to Christ") all things were created in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities; all things were created through Him and for Him" (Col 1:16), or "For from Him, through Him and through Him are all things; to Him be glory forever. Amen" (Rom 11:36). In addition, perhaps there needs to be an analysis as well why a Christian would not want to base their decision on the Bible, which after learning from Swavely, may be caused by either ignorance, unbelief, or laziness or a combination of these. But the few concerns I just brought up should not in any way cause readers to shy away from getting this book and put the principles that Swavely teaches into actions. I find the closing statement of book for Christian readers most worth pondering and is no less important than all the steps, warnings, and examples of a proper biblical decision making process,
"And if you want to please the Lord in your life, you will find that many times the best decisions are also the hardest. Going God's way will often lead you into risk and trouble, and if you follow the principles in this book, even your process of decision making itself will not be easy. It requires the hard work of self-evaluation, biblical study, and wisdom learned by experience. But what makes it all worthwhile is knowing that your decisions will be pleasing to the one who loved you and died for you" (p.176).
Swavely emphasizes the Bible as the primary and only inerrant source of guidance and then properly places wisdom second and desires third as additional means of guidance. His insight that counsel happens at all three levels (rather than as a separate source) is very valuable.
I was especially thankful to see Swavely place the steps of guidance within a relationship with God: walking in the Spirit, recognizing God's sovereignty, and praying for wisdom and providence. Too many writers act as if guidance and decision making for a Christian is simply a matter of following steps or checking boxes.
Swavely puts it all these ideas together in a extremely valuable diagram. I've used his diagram on Biblical decision making many times with others. They comment on how easy the chart is to recall and use.
Like others who have written reviews on this book, I do not share Swavely's view on the complete cessation of supernatural gifts and guidance. The two chapters on this subject use the common arguments for cessation and (in my opinion) the common fallacies of exegesis. This detracts from the book, but the author's main point is to place God's Word as the primary and only objective source of guidance.
As with any book, the reader must separate the bones from the meat as they consume. With only that one caution, I would recommend this work above all others for readability, insight, and usefulness.