Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Must Read Review: The Cross of Christ by John Stott

New feature on The Timothy Chronicles - "Must Read Review."  Occasionally I will feature a short review (not 15 page seminary review) of a book I have read that has been insightful or helpful.  The review will be include a brief description of the book and important contributions.  This must read review will examine The Cross of Christ by John Stott.

If anything Stott attempts an exhaustive approach to an inexhaustible topic: the cross of Jesus.  He discusses the Cross theologically, soteriologically, philosophically and applicationaly.  In just over three hundred pages Stott turns over many neglected stones pertaining to the Cross and its implications.

The book is divided into four sections: Approaching the Cross, The Heart of the Cross, The Achievement of the Cross and Living Under the Cross. Each of which address the Cross from a different angle presenting and affirming orthodox Christology while at the same time interacting with heterodox and heretical thoughts about Jesus and His Cross.  But do not think Stott has authored a dry theological treatise, his book will challenge you intellectually while inspiring you devotionally.

In fact this is one of Stott's greatest contributions, his theology is not dry but inspiring.  He forces the reader to recognize the centrality of the Cross in the Christian experience.  This occurs by addressing issues often unaddressed.  For example he includes a lengthy discussion on Jesus as God's self substitution.  Stott concludes that God satisfies His own justice by becoming His own sacrifice in order to redeem His fallen creation.

Stott's book is a classic.  Quoting D.A. Carson, "There are not many 'must read' books - books that belong on every minister's shelf and on the shelves of thoughtful laypersons who want a better grasp of what is central in Scripture - but this is one of them."

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