My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I will be doing a sermon series soon titled "What Is the Gospel". I had assumed "The Gospel" for years, and have heard others whittle it down to one or three or four points. But some time back I began to re-think what the Scripture, and Jesus, mean by "The Gospel". So I was delighted to pick up Scot McKnight's 184 page hardback and dive into it.
The strengths of the book are numerous. I think he builds a good case for what the Gospel actually is: the resolution of the story of Israel in Jesus, and thus the the story of God's world rescue operation - a world rescue operation that has Jesus, the Messiah of Israel and true Lord of the world, at its center. McKnight takes slow steps to carefully unfold each part, building brick-by-brick, until he comes to the end result. Whether the reader will be totally satisfied with his conclusion or not, he will have to appreciate what the author unfolds and puts on display. In my mind McKnight gets it right.
The weakness of the book may well be the writing style. I have a suspicion that the redundancy - a redundancy that builds to a climax - reflects the author's teaching approach. Nevertheless, for me, it was a bit annoying and I found myself saying, "Okay. Now get to the point!" And in the final chapter McKnight gets to the point, a point he has been subtly persuading the reader to embrace all along.
"The King Jesus Gospel" is a surprisingly easy read. This would be an ideal book for a church's small group to tackle, or an adult Sunday School. But I also think it is a book that needs to be in the hands of Evangelists, Pastors and leaders of every Bible-believing, God-fearing, Christ-loving congregation. To purchase this book would be worth your money, so rush out and snatch up a copy.
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