Friday, April 18, 2014

5 Books on the Cross and Resurrection

Obviously Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday is a golden opportunity to reflect and meditate on the meaning of the cross and resurrection. I pray it is a daily exercise. Below are five books that I have read and found to be excellent resources in no particular order (except for the first one).

John Stott The Cross of Christ
This is a classic that should be read at least once by every Christian. This book inspired an entire sermon series on the various motifs of the cross such as the Temple, the Battlefield, and others.

Adrian Warnock Raised with Christ: How the Resurrection Changes Everything
Of all the books I have read on the reality and the doctrine of the resurrection this is by far the best. Warnock presents a strong case for the resurrection's historicity as well as looks at its prediction in the Old Testament and the role it plays in the theology of the New Testament. This is an invaluable tool for every pastor certainly and it is written in a way that the average Christian could grasp.

N. T. Wright, The Resurrection of the Son of God
Though this is more of an academic work, it remains as one of the most thorough and important works on the resurrection of Christ. Its a thick volume (numbering at 740 pages), but virtually no rock is left unturned. Wright, as a theologian, has his weaknesses, but when it comes to this subject, Wright proves himself to be quite the scholar.

Steve Jeffery, Michael Ovey, and Andrew Sach, Pierced For Our Transgressions: Rediscovering the Glory of Penal substitution
This is the book to read regarding the doctrine of penal substitution. The authors tackle the biblical evidence and survey what theologians of the past have said regarding the doctrine. Perhaps most helpful is their critiquing common arguments against penal substitution like the more recent "divine child-abuse" blasphemy.

Mark Driscoll and Gerry Breshears, Death by Love: Letters from the Cross
In my opinion, every pastor should be aware of the contents of the book (though the first chapter is admittedly weak and problematic). The reason is because it forces ministers to view all of pastoral challenges as remedied by the cross. Each chapter reflects a unique challenge Driscoll has faced and ministry. He then writes a letter to those he is ministering to pointing them to the cross. Throughout the book, the authors apply the doctrines of redemption, propitiation, expiation, Christus Exemplar, and many others. This is an important model for pastors to always follow. Preach. The. Cross.

Others worth mentioning:
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