We should trust the Bible, says Timothy Paul Jones, because it is ‘grounded in the words of a man who died and rose again’ (p.111). Jones’s basic presupposition is this: ‘If we live in a world where it is possible…
- Publisher: IVP
- ISBN: 978-1-78359-438-2
- Pages: 74
- Price: 4.99
This book is a Bible study resource for individuals or small groups. The aim is that readers should become more like Jesus. The content is designed to further this demanding aspiration. The style throughout is engaging and the theological stance conservative evangelical. The author shows an awareness of contemporary culture, though at times this is overemphasised.
The obvious point is made that the modern world is very different from that of Jesus’ day. The seven studies are designed to take the reader to the New Testament description of Jesus and the sort of person God wishes us to be. We have a responsibility to ‘work things through’, so that we live transformed in our modern world. Christlikeness needs to permeate every part of our lives.
The study themes are led by specific biblical passages. These include: Transformed: becoming like God’s Son in — godliness (John 15:1-17); character (Colossians 3:1-17); serving (John 13:1-5, 12-17); compassion (Mark 6:30-44); justice (Luke 4:16-21); suffering (Mark 8:31-38); anticipation (1 John 2:28-3:3).
Questions on each theme are posed at two levels, ‘What does the Bible say?’ and ‘Going deeper’. There is a section on ‘Living it out’ and suggestions for prayer. There are also recommendations for further study arising from each passage. In the final part of the book, there are useful quotes from other Scriptures and from individuals prominent in the evangelical world.
A surprising omission is any reference to Romans 12:2, though a subsequent section is for further study in Christian character. I recommend this book, but I would have preferred greater emphasis on the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. He is paramount in our transformation, both initial (regeneration) and subsequent (sanctification).