When I heard that David Murray, whose blog I follow avidly at Head Heart Hand, was writing a book I knew it would be a good read and I was very eager review it for our readers. Even better I have an e-book to giveaway to a reader as well…
This book is entitled Jesus on Every Page and since the author is Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology, you can imagine that this book takes us to the heart of the Old Testament. For a lot of christians the Old Testament is simply a narrative, a collection of stories passed on from generation to generation. These are some of the first stories that we tell our children… the story of Creation, Noah, Abraham, Jacob… all stories from the Old Testament. Once we are adults we like to read “more about Jesus” and so focus on the New Testament and leave the stories of olden times to children’s church.
The Old Testament was the Bible of the early church, the disciples and the apostles, the Word of God that they would have turned too. The Old Testament was the teaching that Jesus himself learnt from in the temple… and yet in modern times it is considered a little less easy to understand, a little less easy to connect with than the New Testament, where we tend to linger longer.
This means that while there are sixty six books in the Bible we tend to focus on the twenty seven books of the New Testament. In fact many wonder at the relevance of the Old Testament to us in the modern church. Well, with this book the relevance simply leaps at you from chapter to chapter. In the first section of the book, My Road to Emmaus, the author describes his journey into the Old Testament. I really enjoyed reading this section – it was a personal journey, not an abstract and academic review – and so it was really easy to read and follow along.
The second part of the book, entitled Spiritual Heartburn, is just that… ten chapters exploring section by section where we can find Jesus literally on every page. Forget about an ancient historical saga. While the author works through the all the sections of the Old Testament such as the history books and the law; he also considers the revelation of Jesus throughout the old testament characters and prophets, the poetry and psalms.
Here’s a quote from the book, on page 180, that brought it all together for me:
This is a book written for all christians to read. While it is a topic that academic theologians might be more familiar with, this is a book that regular folk can read, understand and be excited about reading. I found myself saying: “Did you know…?” to whoever happened to be around me while I was reading it. There is a lot to learn in this book and it is full of things to talk about… and would make a fabulous book for a Bible Study. There are topical questions for each chapter, gathered at the end of the book, as well as an index.
I remember years ago a friend preached a sermon on genealogies… a part of the Bible that I had always breezed over before… you know reading away and here’s a genealogy “skip a few verses” and read on. Well I finally learnt my lesson in that sermon and it was a good one – genealogies demonstrate God’s intention, they show without any doubt, His carefully thought out plan, the intention in often obscure people getting the lead role in a Bible story, His perfect plan right from before the beginning of time to send us a Saviour. Well this book, for me, is very like that genealogy sermon… opening up the Old Testament to far more than a great historical saga… stretching from the beginning of time almost until the birth of Jesus. The Old Testament is packed with far more than just hints to an impending Saviour… the whole Bible, not just the New Testament, is all about Jesus.
More About the Book…
The Book is launching this week and their is a brilliant launch offer… If you buy a copy of the book before 31 August then you receive a pack of $100 dollars worth of Old Testament Freebies… videos, posters, lectures and e-books.
On Head Heart Hand you can read Se7en + 1 Benefits of Reading Jesus on Every Page…
And you might want to take a look at other reviews, here’s what Tim Challies had to say about Jesus on Every Page.
As I mentioned… I have an ebook copy of this book to GiveAway. The GiveAway works in the usual way, comment before the end of Sunday, 25 August 2013, and we will draw and publish the winner after that. I won’t respond to your comments as I do on our other posts because I don’t want to be included in our own giveaway. Our GiveAways are open to everyone, world-wide: If you have won a GiveAway before never fear – enter away. Looking forward to your comments!!!
I really would like to thank David Murray and Thomas Nelson who provided the ebook version of the book to review and giveaway. What a great book and what a privilege to review it. I was not paid in any way for the review and the opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.