Tuesday, August 2, 2011

"King's Cross" by Timothy Keller

This shall be a unique review because this book was not from a publicist or author seeking a review. It was merely a gift from a nice Christian friend who wanted my opinion on a book that he happened to have an extra copy of.

With a cover white enough to blind yet not bright enough to merit Isaiah 62:2, the title's 3D etching leaps off the front and onto one's psyche. The fantastic notion that a king--no, THE King--would take on the humility and pain of a Cross is the fundamental piece of Christianity that tends to drift into believers' subconsciousness. Sure, everyone likes a good Christian self-help book or pretty devotional with room for journaling on delicate pages, but few pick up good theology books that are too intense for meager Bible studies and too humble to be called dogma.

So, what do we have? We have a look at what grace really is without saying it out loud. Almost like supernovae that announce light without ever uttering a word. The book of Mark is gone through in this book. The entire Gospel is not quoted, and other parts of Scripture wade in. However, the focus is on Peter's documenter who wrote the "concise" history of Jesus. The book is divided into two sections. The first details Jesus' Kingship, and the second highlights Calvalry. Some chapters read like sermons and are not exactly page-turners, but the insights that Keller throws in are marvelous.

I can not do the lessons in this book justice. Sure, I could go on about how Keller emphasizes dependence on Christ, death to a works mentality, embracing weaknesses, awaiting the New Creation, delighting in Christ's glory, and so much more. However, those seem like staples to regular Christian diets that believers ought to already know. The way they are presented is beautiful, though. Imagine a hamburger. That is ordinary in America; but picture it presented on polished China and expensive cutlery. The burger is still a burger, but something catches our attention and makes us appreciate our meal again.

All I can hope is that readers of "King's Cross" smile every time Jesus' name appears with pride similar to a parent at a ballgame who points to the field and says, "That One's mine."

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