There are some books that are so good, I go back to them over and over. Pretty much anything authored by Dallas Willard and N.T. Wright fall into this category. I read with a highlighter, so these kind of books look like coloring books when I’m done with them. The ideas formulated by these people have constructed the foundation of who I am and how I see life.
I’m re-reading The Challenge of Jesus by N.T. Wright. I’m not exaggerating when I say every Christian needs to read this book.
Here’s a quote I read from it today that is rattling around in my head:
“When we speak of ‘following Christ,’ it is the crucified Messiah we are talking about. His death was not simply the messy bit that enables our sins to be forgiven but that can then be forgotten. The cross is the surest, truest and deepest window on the very heart and character of the living and loving God; the more we learn about the cross in all its historical and theological dimensions, the more we discover about the One in whose image we are made and hence our own vocation to be the cross-bearing people, the people in whose lives and service the living God is made known. And when therefore we speak of shaping our world, we do not — we dare not — simply treat the cross as the thing that saves us ‘personally,’ but which can be left behind when we get on with the job. The task of shaping our world is best understood as the redemptive task of bringing the achievement of the cross to bear on the world, and in that task the methods, as well as the message, must be cross-shaped through and through.”