Book Review—The Scriptures, the Cross, & the Power of God

The Scriptures, the Cross, & the Power of God: Reflections for Holy Week by Tom (N. T.) Wright. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2006. xi, 84 pp. $12.95/paperback.

wright script_cross.jpgPurchase: CBD; PPC; WTS Bookstore; Amazon

No indices

Front Cover | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover

ISBNs: 0664230512 & 9780664230517

LCCN: BT414 .W75 2006

DCN: 242.36 WRI

Subjects: Easter, Christianity

Tom (N. T.) Wright (b. 1948) is the Bishop of Durham in the Church of England. He is one of Great Britain’s most respected New Testament scholars. In 1999, Christianity Today named him as one of the top five theologians in the world. He has authored several books and is most noted for his “Everyone” series of commentaries.

The significance of the events of Holy Week is sometimes missed in the midst of the pageantry and programs that are prepared to celebrate the glorious resurrection of Jesus Christ. In a series of messages for Holy Week 2005, Bishop Tom Wright draws our attention to some of those specific events in order to help us have “enriched understanding” and “empowered living out” of the Christian faith (p. x). He uses Matthew 22:29 as the challenge for all those who misinterpret the week and therefore miss some of its grandest teachings. In Matthew 22:29, Jesus declared that the Sadducees were in error about the resurrection because “they knew neither the Scriptures nor the power of God” (p. x). When the Scriptures and the power of God are properly understood, Holy Week takes on a whole new significance and has ramifications for Christian living, today.

Wright walks you through the Week with a new angle and gives a fresh perspective to a well trodden path.Each of these chapters was originally a sermon delivered in Durham Cathedral during the week. They were compiled with very little editing, so they read as they were spoken. His logic is generally clear, but you need to pay attention to his steps in order to keep up. Each address begins with Wright’s own translation of the passage. Beginning on Palm Sunday and going through Maundy Thursday morning, Wright takes a close look at the teachings and parables of Jesus in Matthew 21:33-23:12. On Maundy Thursday evening and into Good Friday, he moves to John’s Gospel to discuss the betrayal and trial of Jesus. He goes back to Matthew for the Easter Vigil on Saturday with a look at chapter 28:1-10. Finally, he ends with John’s account of the Resurrection (John 20), emphasizing the fact that Easter is more than just “life after death.” Easter is more importantly “the beginning of that ‘life after life after death’, that after-after life” (p. 80). Read more about Book Review—The Scriptures, the Cross, & the Power of God

Musings About Accreditation

In The Nick of Time
A couple of recent incidents have brought the topic of accreditation to the front of my mind. One is a report of a Bible college that has been priding itself to its students and constituents for having achieved accreditation with a national accrediting agency rather than a regional one, as if the national agency were somehow superior to the regionals. The second is a polemic by a former fundamentalist who insists that only regional accreditation is really accreditation. These two attitudes are about equally wrong.

Let’s clear up some misconceptions about accreditation. First, accreditation is no guarantee of quality. Every competent educator knows of second- and third-rate schools that have gained status as accredited institutions. On the other hand, there are good, credible schools that, for whatever reason, have never pursued accreditation. The point is simply that accreditation should not be the only criterion to decide whether a school offers a good education.
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They Called Her “Mom”

Everyone called her “Mom Steel,” though the only ones in our group who could really claim to be her descendants were Matt, Shannah, Ruth, and John Mark. The rest of us were college kids excited to have a home-cooked meal and a place to fellowship on Sunday nights. Mrs. Steel’s motto was, “All are welcome. I can always add another cup of water to the soup 366432_hand_architecture.jpgto make it stretch farther.” And, although I never recall actually eating soup at her house, her actions and attitude showed that she was willing and ready to accommodate any strays who showed up at her house without advance warning on a Sunday night.

As a new bride, I was excited for the opportunity to show hospitality to others, as Mrs. Steel had, but I worried about the details. I wanted to make my very best meal each time. I wanted the house to be spotless. I felt like I had to plan entertainment. I worried about mismatched serving dishes. I fretted that my furniture didn’t seem nice enough. And as a result, I don’t think my guests felt entirely comfortable in my home. My anxiety over wanting everything to be perfect translated into guests and a hostess who weren’t entirely at ease. I wanted to be a good hostess, but I just didn’t understand what I was doing wrong.
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Robert Delnay—The SharperIron Interview | Part 3—Keswick View of Sanctification

delnay.jpgI had the privilege of interviewing Dr. Robert Delnay for SI. Dr. Delnay has taught at many fundamental colleges and seminaries during his life. He currently teaches at Clearwater Christian College. I did three interviews with him—the first two about his life and work and about the Northern Baptist Convention.

In this third interview, I asked him about the Keswick view of sanctification.

Jason Janz

Listen to the interview (31:11 min., 12.49 MB).

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The Resurrection Body of Christ the Lord, Part 4

Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

by John C. Whitcomb, Th.D

As we have seen, it was during mealtimes with His apostles after His resurrection that our Lord Jesus Christ demonstrated most convincingly that He was the same person as the One who had died on the cross. But the greatest recognition and appreciation meal with our Lord is still in the future. On that occasion, at the beginning of the millennial kingdom on the 625919_jesus.jpgearth, He will partake again of the juice of grapes. He announced to His apostles, “I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom” (Matt. 26:29, KJV).

Pointedly, He assured them, “That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom” (Luke 22:30). But who else will be invited? Unbelievers will be excluded—by their own choice. Nevertheless, there will an enormous number of participants, including, “Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets… . they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God” (13:28-29).
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Why Stay in Fundamentalism?

tracks.jpgA few hours ago, I carefully listened to an MP3 in which Joe Zichterman, former Bible professor at Northland Baptist Bible College (Dunbar, WI), discusses his reasons for joining the Church-Growth Movement (CGM) in general and Willow Creek Community Church (South Barrington, IL) in particular. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has found his presentation both moving and disturbing.

My heart goes out to Joe and to his family because it’s evident to me that he or someone in his family (or both) has suffered something very painful at the hands of fundamentalists. (In the talk, Joe doesn’t target Fundamentalism by name but clearly includes it under the “high-control groups” label.) Whether what was painful was also wrong I’m not in a position to know, but it’s certainly possible.

I’ll respond to a few points in Joe’s presentation, but the larger goal here is to encourage anyone pondering a similar move to rethink his options.
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