Sacramental Life: Spiritual Formation Through the Book of Common Prayer

Sacramental Life: Spiritual Formation Through the Book of Common Prayer

by David A. deSilva


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What happens when old meets new?
As David deSilva has experienced the ancient wisdom of the Book of Common Prayer, he's been formed spiritually in deep and lasting ways. In these pages, he offers you a brand new way to use the Book of Common Prayer, that you too might experience new growth, new intimacy with God and a new lens through which to view the world.
Focusing on the four sacramental rites of baptism, Eucharist, marriage and burial, deSilva explores each one in depth through the prayers, liturgies and Scripture readings of the Book of Common Prayer, and then adds his own devotional exercises that help you immediately apply what you've reflected on. As you read and contemplate the material, you may notice old habits, wrong beliefs and negative patterns being replaced with new desires and perspectives that help you draw ever closer to God.
In this innovative and engaging resource David deSilva invites you in to a new way of being spiritually formed through an old book that has shaped thousands of disciples through the years. "I hope that, as you read and pray through this guide," he writes, "you will discover afresh the ways in which the rites contained in the Book of Common Prayer facilitate a genuine encounter with God, and a transforming experience of grace."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780830835188
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
Publication date: 07/30/2008
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 801,837
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

David A. deSilva (PhD, Emory University) is Trustees' Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Greek at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ashland, Ohio. He is the author of over twenty-five books includingDay of Atonement: A Novel of the Maccabean Revolt;Unholy Allegiances: Heeding Revelation's Warning;The Jewish Teachers of Jesus, James, and Jude;Introducing the Apocrypha: Context, Message and Significance; andPerseverance in Gratitude: A Socio-Rhetorical Commentary on the Epistle "to the Hebrews."He is also an ordained elder in the Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church.

Table of Contents



Part One: Baptism: Walking in Newness of Life

1. Christian Life as Baptismal Life

2. The Forgiveness of Sins

3. New Birth, New Life

4. Union with Christ

5. A New Exodus

6. We Renounce All That Is Not from God

7. We Reach Out for All That Is from God

8. We Journey Together Toward Christlikeness

9. We Promise to Live Out Our Baptism in 'Real Life'

10. A Sevenfold Prayer for the Baptismal Life

Part Two: Holy Eucharist: Nourishment for the New Life

11. Encountering Jesus in the Eucharist

12. Remembering

13. The Host Who Is the Feast

14. A Family Meal

15. An Appetizer

16. Self-Examination and Confession

17. The Confession of Sin

18. Solidarity in Sin, Solidarity in Forgiveness

19. Prayer and Intercession

20. The Collects of the Day

21. Prayers of the People

22. The Lord's Prayer

23. Adoration

24. Idolatry, Then and Now

25. What Gift Shall We Bring?

26. Through the Open Door

27. Shaped by the Story of God's Self-Giving

28. The Nicene Creed

29. The Great Thanksgiving

30. Send Us Out

Part Three: Christian Marriage

31. Marriage Made in Heaven

32. Made to Reflect God's Love for His People

33. Made Within Community, Made for Mission

34. Bringing the 'New Person' to the Marriage

35. Bringing God to the Marriage

Part Four: The Gate of Eternal Life

36. Facing Death As a People of Hope

37. In the Shelter of the Most High

38. Growing Through Grief

39. Reminders of Our Mortality

40. Some Dead Ends

41. Smashing Down the Wall

42. Living Like You'll Live Forever

43. Affirmation Worth Seeking

44. Freed for Costly Discipleship

45. Dying As Those Who Go Forth to Live

Appendix A: The Apostles? Creed

Appendix B: The Nicene Creed


What People are Saying About This

The Rt. Rev. Dr. Frederick Borsch

"David deSilva's Sacramental Life takes readers on a spiritual journey through the sacraments of life and new life in Christ. Grounded in careful theology and Scripture, the book is richly devotional and full of wise spiritual counsel and direction. In addition to being of great benefit to more mature Christians (especially Episcopalians and Anglicans), the book could be well used with new or inquiring church members who wish to understand and grow in their faith and devotion."

William H. Willimon

"David deSilva has given us a wonderful guide to spiritual development and sustenance in this book. I love the way he ties in our individual spiritual reflection with the cadences of the Book of Common Prayer and the church's liturgical life. Here is a book that moves from the gathered congregation to the individual believer and back again in a way that is not only helpful, engaging, but also faithful."
William H. Willimon, coauthor of Resident Aliens and Bishop of The United Methodist Church

Dr. Ben Witherington III

"[Sacramental Life is] written with pastoral sensitivity, and with the aim to enrich our prayer and devotional life. I heartily commend this book. It will bless your soul and energize your spiritual practices through the aid of one of the richest of all sources--the Book of Common Prayer."
Dr. Ben Witherington III, professor of New Testament, Asbury Theological Seminary

Richard J. Foster

"Sacramental Life takes the Anglican Book of Common Prayer as its focal point. From this vantage point it invites us on a journey into the various and varied aspects of human experience, giving guidance and counsel for our formation into Christlikeness along the way. For all, and especially those with a liturgical interest, it offers expert guidance and wise counsel."
Richard J. Foster, founder of Renovaré and author of Celebration of Discipline and Streams of Living Water

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