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Book reviews

Here are some book reviews that are just in. These people have only read 15 chapters of my book More to come later!

Brenda Writes:

The book “The Parables of Jesus Made Simple” stayed true to its title. The reflections on the parables were concise and simple. Pastor Matthew Payne explained the parables of Jesus based on his own and other people’s experiences. With that, he was able to inject modern-day meaning and application on Jesus’ teachings in the simplest and easiest to understand way. He shares in how we can live in our 21st-century lives the teaching of Jesus and how these teachings are of equal relevance and application now like it was 2000 years ago. Reading the book, you will see the applications of Jesus teaching today. We are not only reading about Jesus’ intended lesson but we are also reading about its realization in real-life applications.

Pastor Payne is a really good Christian scribe. Indeed, he shares the good parts of Jesus’ old teaching with fresh revelations that are moving and applicable to the modern Christian. He shares his insights not only on the more popular parables of Jesus but also on the least known parables. Each parable was discussed individually using the simplest thoughts and words. Yet, as you read through the pages, you will realized that each parable is linked to one another and that to live under God’s teaching is not one parable at a time but rather, the entire summation of the parables as a whole.

Christians can read the book freely knowing that the book displays no bias on faith or denomination. Rather, it focuses on how we can live and follow in Jesus’ footsteps in the most simple and ordinary ways in our lives. Indeed, starting your day with a chapter from the book will strengthen your faith and provide you with the assurance that everything will work out fine.

Carl Martin writes:

You don't need a PhD to be inspired by the Holy Spirit. You need selfless dedication, humility and a hunger for truth. You can feel these in Matthew Robert Payne's book on the Parables of Jesus made simple. Each parable is brought to life and given relevance to today's world. He shows how we can apply each of these "pearls of great price" in our daily lives.

My maternal grandfather was a Southern Baptist minister and missionary to Nigeria, Africa. My father was a non-denominational minister and counselor. And I spent three years as a divinity student. After sixty years on this earth, I've heard a few sermons, and Mr. Payne's book stands as a delightful treasure.

I may not agree with everything Mr. Payne says, but with humility, we each can learn new things and new viewpoints that open our eyes ever more. Everything Mr. Payne has to offer in his book acts to shine a light on our individual lives, allowing us to see more clearly whether or not we are good stewards in the few years we have in this world. Few books have the power to change our lives. This is one of them, especially if we approach the lessons with humility, while listening to the quiet stillness within.

Sharon Lazarus writes:

A book that will embrace you like a long lost friend, maybe confront you for loosing touch, but than hold you close like all good friends do for finding you after all, filling you with warmth and hope.
Like a phoenix that rises from the ashes, the writer of this book Matthew Payne rose from his life of waywardness’ and has now turned into a beacon of hope for the lost souls which roam aimlessly in this world.
Previously many writers have written about the wisdom hidden in the innocence of the parables in the Bible, but none could have done so at the cost of exposing their own spiritual and human flaws-yet that is exactly what makes the Parables of Jesus by Matthew Payne an exceptional platform for modern day Christianity.
I may have had my doubts about a self righteous preacher standing over me, making me feel small and sinful, lecturing me about righteousness’ and God, but on reading the Parables of Jesus I felt as if an equal, a well wisher and a friend were trying to guide me towards a better life. Which helped the message sink in faster and deeper. Today I feel more connected to Christianity then I ever did, in spite of years and years of forced church going from my parents. “Then he added, "Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: 'I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.' For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners." Matthew 9:13

The Parables of Jesus truly captures the spirit of the scripture.    

The Parables of Jesus, not only reconnects its readers with the human face of Christianity, but also lends a much needed insight into the diverse simplicity of its basic message- This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it: "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners"--and I am the worst of them all-
1 Timothy1:15
It encompasses the time, state and human factors of how and why each parable was said, explains it comprehensively and point by point, proving yet again that God truly is in the details.
It bridges the gap between what was, is and will be by up to date examples from real life which the reader can easily relate to.
It is so easy to get caught up in the ceaseless demands of our daily lives, the commotion of our ambitions, the indifference of our humanity that spirituality seems like a frivolous after thought. The Parables of Jesus will bring you back to your roots-the roots which stem from
Matthew 18:3: And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
The world around you and your life’s experiences may have hardened you and erased all traces of your faith, it may have silenced your heart and mutated your conscience to adjust to your life style-
The Parables of Jesus will show you what you are and what you are supposed to be.
As a child you may have embraced Bible and the priceless parables with a childlike innocence and understanding, but this book will shown their true light as an adult, today I have a greater understanding of what it means to be a Christian and I feel truly enlightened at a time when all I had around me was pitch darkness!

Maria Nordstokke writes:

I think the first thing I have to say about this book is if you don’t buy many books but the occasional one, this book is a MUST buy.  I've read a lot of Christian books but I don't think any of them come close to this. You will be changed.  It took a long time for me to read through the book because I would read a page or two and it would be enough information to ponder on deeply yet it was not difficult to understand at all…it was made simple. J  The parables have always been a favorite of mine to read from the Bible and I have tried to apply some of them in my and my family’s life. This book is a brief overview of the parables that I believe others will be able to understand and hopefully grow stronger with the wonderful knowledge that can be found within the words that Matthew Payne has so beautifully described for us. 

From this book, I understood even more that the Lord, my God, plays a personal role in my life, and building a spiritual relationship with me.  We always seek to make it clear to a new believer that, when he has asked the Lord to forgive his sins and to come into his life, his heart has become the residence of a living Person. I feel that Matthew has the Holy Spirit of God within him and has opened to him the Scriptures that he may find Christ there, to direct his prayer, to govern his life, and to reproduce in him the character of our Lord."   I have strengthened my spiritual relationship as a result of reading this book and I hope that it does the same for many others.  May the Lord continue to bless and be with you all!  Thank you for such a most enjoyable and knowledgeable read!  Highly recommend to all!

Jam Cielo writes:

In his book, author Matthew Payne discusses all of Jesus’ parables in detail, and relates each of them to modern day living and to the Christian life in general. All chapters are written in a very simple way, and I don’t think anybody will have a hard time understanding his points. He also includes many personal accounts and experiences that he considers relevant to the parables, which are helpful and insightful in a way.

My personal favorites are the chapters on the prodigal son, the lost coin, the rich fool, and the king’s war plans. The first two serve as a reminder to me that God loves me and will always be happy to see me come back, no matter what I do. (Actually, I’ve always thought that the parable of the prodigal son was about the wasteful son, but this book showed me that the focus is actually the father, who is God. It’s about the Lord, and how He will always welcome us no matter where we’ve gone or what we’ve done.) The third chapter I mentioned is a lesson on trying to live a life that is less dependent on the “worldly” things, since these things keep us away from God. We should stop wanting and wanting silly stuff, and try to spend more time with God. Regarding the last chapter in my list, it’s an illustration of how we as Christians are expected to live our lives, if we truly want to be Christians for God. These four chapters struck a nerve, and I will always remember them from now on.

I have to say that some of the contents of the book are quite repetitive, with regard to the author’s personal experiences or the points he is trying to get across, but I think that’s only because he wants to drive all his points home. He repeats some things over and over again to ensure that we understand, in hopes that we might live more Christian lives in doing so.

Again, if you are seeking more understanding on Jesus’ teachings, you have to read this book. I assure you that you will find answers to your questions, even at least to some of them. Let us all work to become true Christians!

Leena Thamalam writes:

Parables made easy to understand and explained with real-life examples. Total of 54 parables have been explained in this book by Pastor Mathew Payne and find relevance to every Christian and non-Christian life. If one thought that it is difficult to find the age old parables that Jesus told, relevant to today’s materialistic and fast-paced life, then the Wisdom and insights shared in this book dispel that myth!
Parables in The New Testament are meant to make us understand how and why we need to obey God’s Word. Expanding on the Ten Commandments, Jesus tried to make us understand the Word of God through parables which apply directly to our lives. But even the parables have to be made easier for us to understand more, and consistently so.

The author attempts to make it appealing to almost every kind of reader with an attempt to make one understand/absorb it in the most convenient way one likes to look at the content. Read it like a book for a complete understanding and experience, read the relevant articles and gain specific insights, or consider it as a reference guide while reading The Scripture to dwell more into each of the parables, while trying to extensively draw from the clear and in-depth explanations by Pastor Mathew Payne. The parables are explained in a conversational tone with illustrations that prompt one to think of their own life and identify with the stories while inspired to draw and apply the understanding and learning. The author’s drive to share the true and relevant meaning of these parables with God’s anointment can leave one truly inspired to keep coming back to this book to gain more Wisdom.

Too many things to be clarified and I find answers to almost all of them with the convenience to read in my time and pace and with a physical book, it is more convenient! Christian or non-Christian, this book is for all who want to and need to understand the Word of God. I like the way each parable is made clear, simple and personalized. While I find some of them truly inspiring, I wish all were so for me at all times. I guess I will have to slowly absorb and apply with time. Nevertheless, this collection is worth reading over and again till I can get some of the teachings ingrained into my life to make me a more enlightened one, armed with simple and easy understanding of God’s wish for ‘Wisdom to All’ …

Wilma Iyer writes:

The teachings of Jesus made simpler through anointed Pastor like Matthew Payne, through his real life testimonies.  It is a privilege to be associated with anointed people of God who guide you through, by their simple way of life.  Would recommend one and all to read the book willingly which enriches you spiritually and directs you by the Divine Spirit to be moved according to the Will of the Lord.  May you be enriched with all that in illustrated to grow into an intense relationship with Our Lord Jesus Christ and experience the joy of His awesome presence in your life.

May Our Lord bless Pastor Matthew for laboring in His vineyard and sowing seeds of His word. 

Cee Fuerte writes:

By definition, a PARABLE is a simple earthly story that illustrates a Biblical meaning. Sounds interesting, isn’t it?

But what amazes me is that why do many people struggle with applying the teachings of the Bible in the day-to-day life? What makes a teaching believable? More so, what makes a Biblical teaching real and true?

Being part of a Christian family and having been exposed to the ministry of evangelism and discipleship, I have found out that the main reason for this is because most people who read the Bible do not understand what it means; how can you apply what you don’t have any idea about? And how can a principle be true if it is not being practically applied in daily life?

This book by Pastor Matthew Robert Payne, “The Parables of Jesus Made Simple” addresses these issues. It is made up of chapters explaining Jesus’ words in simple terms that are relevant and very easy to understand. Pastor Matthew is clearly spirit-led.

This book is a must-read for everyone who wants to know the heart of Jesus. Whether you are new in the faith or have been on the Christian journey for some time or already a minister in the field – this book will be very useful and effective to meet your spiritual needs.

Above all, if you are seeking peace, love and joy in the wrong places; and does not yet know Christ as your personal Savior and Lord, you must read this book. I am sure, you will meet the most incredible person that ever loved you and gave His life for you – Jesus Christ!

Alongside the Bible, and with the help and guidance of the Holy Spirit, read “The Parables of Jesus Made Simple”; and you will never be the same again.
Congratulations to Pastor Matthew Robert Payne for allowing the Lord to work through Him in this book.

To read more about Matthew Robert Payne or to know how to book him to speak at your church click on my name Matthew Robert Payne