Welcome to this detailed DDT Product Review of Kenneth Osbeck’s classic devotional
Book called Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions (to be
Referred to as “Amazing Grace” in this review). It is an excellent book relating hymn
backgrounds to your spiritual life. No matter what “version” of this work that you are
interested in, you’ll find out what’s most important about it: the content. It is formatted
to be used for daily devotions (like “Our Daily Bread” and other daily readings).
I want to give you enough information to make sure that you are an informed buyer.
I also want you to know right up front my theological perspective so you’ll be able
to understand what I write (I think that’s important, and I’m quite sure you’ll agree!).
Finally, I know that you’ve already looked at the DDT Rating, so you already know
the conclusion: this is a great resource for everyone, regardless of doctrine and
denomination. Now, let us commence with the Review!
366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions
Would you like to see what makes for the foundation of an excellent devotional work? This is from Osbeck’s Preface in his daily devotional work Amazing Grace:
Even a casual visit to a bookstore will impress a viewer with the many “how-
But what are the “how-
First and foremost, there needs to be an appreciative awareness of God’s amazing grace in our lives: grace that adopted us as sinners and made us members of the heavenly kingdom; grace that sustains and directs our daily steps; and the grace that will ultimately usher us to our eternal home.
Secondly, let me suggest these key words that also need to be a vital part of every believer’s daily experience:
A daily life of praise, thanksgiving, and the adoration of God.
A daily life of prayer, fellowship, and a communion with God.
A daily life of love, a delight in the personal assurance of God’s love and a desire to share His love with others.
Two basic resource books are available to help us in this spiritual well-
As an old fashioned conservative, let me say “Amen!” Osbeck gets it like few contemporary authors do. The two most important books to just about any Christian ought to be The Bible and their church hymnal. Osbeck’s Amazing Grace bring them both together.
The best part of this book is that it is formatted for a daily reading every day
of the year. So, while it is a book that many people could sit down and simply read
straight through, it will be much better taken in small increments -
These pages are power packed! Not only will each day’s reading give you “the rest
of the story” as to the background of the hymn, but Osbeck skillfully -
The hymn selection is clearly traditional, and not contemporary. Those looking for a CCM style of music will be disappointed; those looking for “Holy, Holy, Holy” and “Leaning On the Everlasting Arms” will be delighted!
With Osbeck’s many other titles, you might think, “What’s the point of this one? Hasn’t he already said all there is to say about these hymns?” Glad you asked!
Amazing Grace keeps its focus on Daily Devotionals. It is not a history book; it is a devotional book first. While it does reference the back stories of our beloved hymns, he is writing to draw you closer to God; not to give you a history lesson on hymnology. And he does this very well.
Here is a sample from December 22 -
As this sprightly carol reminds us, Christmas should be the most joyous season of the year for all true Christians. Our lives should be filled with gratitude to God for the immeasurable love shown to us in the gift of His Son. Out of joyous hearts we should be exuberant in “heart and soul and voice!” This ancient hymn uses frequent repetition to impress upon us that the birth of Christ won for us “endless bliss” by opening the way to heaven and conquering our fear of death through His assurance of eternal life.
The festive spirit of Christmas, however, should not fade away as the holiday passes. The joy and peace that Christ brings to our lives should enable us to be continually rejoicing Christians, regardless of the circumstances. The blessings that came to us on Christmas morn have illuminated our lives forever!
Osbeck closes this day’s reading with these vital words:
Determine by God’s help to maintain the joy of Christmas in your life. Seek to minister an encouraging word to some lonely person. Share this musical message....
I give this book a “Great Resource for Everyone Rating” -
If you like this kind of literature, you’ll want to check out Osbeck’s other books that are written with a similar methodology.
Amazon.com offers 21 reviews (as of December, 2012). Read them here.
Purchase Osbeck’s Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions Here
Purchase Amazing Grace... formatted for theWord Bible Software
Purchase Amazing Grace... hardcover from Amazon.com
This comprehensive review is by Dr. David S. Thomason. Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.
REVIEW: Amazing Grace (Daily Devotional) by Kenneth Osbeck
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This is a real treat for all hymn lovers. It focuses on a daily devotional thought tied to the background of famous hymns. Complete with Scripture verses and lyrics, this is sure to be a real blessing to your walk with God.
Great Resource for Everyone