Using a three-column format in the front part of this issue enables us to publish what is by far the largest ever of our annual surveys of books on religion. Even so the writers had to be selective in their choices and terse in their comments. There were hundreds of books that we just didn’t have space to mention. With only a handful of exceptions we have confined ourselves to books issued in the United States for the first time during the last calendar year. Moreover, we have concentrated on books for the more serious reader, in keeping with our general essay style. By excluding such types as popular works of inspiration or biography, study manuals, and fiction we do not mean to deny their helpfulness. Advertisements for these books are in abundance.

We lead off this year with surveys on practical subjects, hoping to entice some readers into looking at the book evaluations who otherwise might skip them. Placing the surveys of books on the Bible further back does not mean any de-emphasis on the foundational importance of the Scriptures.

Perhaps a by-product of the energy crisis is that would-be wanderers who are “stuck” at home will take more time to read. We hope that Christians will use their limited reading time for the best books in their areas of interest. Our surveyors have tried to help them make such choices. We apologize for unintentional or unjustifiable omissions, and we cordially thank the publishers who cooperated most willingly in sending us review copies. The Book Editor welcomes suggestions for improving this annual feature.

If there are any remaining clouds of doubt in the minds of evangelicals that “the Church is back,” the literature of 1973 should blow them away like a strong west wind. Over seventy-five ...

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