Saturday, February 04, 2012

Jesus Plus Nothing = Everything


Between the title of the book and the fact that the author,  Tullian Tchividjian, is the grandson of Billy and Ruth Graham, my expectation of what I would gain from this book was low.  Many people get book deals with their familiar connections.  I know Jesus is everything, and I know the gospel.  After being blown out of the water when reading the first chapter, I found myself realizing how much it is that I need to be reminded of the gospel.  Like Tullian, I too grew up in the church.  Jesus' name and the fact that he died to save my sins is a part of my everyday language.  This book really caused me to reflect on whether or not my life is lived to know the gospel to be true.  

"We recognize that the gospel ignites the Christian life, but we often fail to see that it's also the fuel to keep us going and growing as Christians." (page 37)

I "know" that Jesus died so that I could have freedom on this earth because there is nothing that I can do to gain my salvation.  Jesus has done it all by paying the ultimate price, and yet, I am living in the chains of self reliance....."what we need to do, not what Jesus has done becomes the end game" (page 46).  With scripture being thrown into every sentence, Tullian shows how we have taken the focus off the cross and put it on ourselves.  We don't need to simply tell others the gospel, we need to be reminded of it daily and to reflect on its meaning.  This is a gift to us!  This is our daily sanctification!  

I gained more from reading this book than I imagined that I would.  It was the gift of being reminded of my salvation through Jesus, and how ridiculous I can be by trying to earn my way by doing certain things in my life.  

Even if you are not a big reader, this book is a simple read full of scripture and reminders of our beautiful Savior.  I would recommend this book to the newest and most seasoned Christians of all ages.  
"Pascal expressed it well when he said that we should make people wish the gospel were true, then show them that it is." (page 125)

Also, the publisher, Crossway, has brief videos that are less than five minutes to coincide with each chapter's reading.  You can click here to view them. 

Note: I was provided a free copy of this book by the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

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