jtrhart

The Truth of the Cross; A Review

In books on March 17, 2008 at 5:27 pm

The Truth of the Cross
by R.C. Sproul
Reformation Trust, 2007

Overview

The Truth of the Cross coverThe cross has been the center of discussion and debate since the early beginnings of Christianity. What exactly happened that night? Did it even have to happen? What was Jesus going through as it happened? Who benefits from what happened on the cross? These are the simplified versions of some very complex theological questions arising from our understanding of Christ’s work on the cross but if you think about it, so much of the way you live the Christian life is rooted in what you believe really took place on the cross. The author himself spells out how important this is in his comment

If you take away the cross as an atoning act, you take away Christianity.

Outline

R.C. Sproul’s most recent book The Truth of the Cross checks in at about 167 pages, a quick read if you are willing but certainly not sparse in depth. When the cross is discussed, normally you would hear the words atonement, justification, sacrifice, redemption, substitution, debt, suffering, and hell. Amazingly enough, you will find all of these topics covered in this book in a way that RC is well-known for: easy to understand but never lacking in thought-provoking theology.

Obviously in a shorter book like this it is difficult to thoroughly examine all of these topics but that wasn’t the author’s intent. The author seems to have written an introductory book, giving the reader who may have questions about the cross or maybe hasn’t ever studied some of these topics a good overview of the subject.

Although the book answers a lot of questions throughout its first nine chapters, I particularly enjoyed the tenth chapter, “Questions and Answers”. Some great questions are asked and RC briefly responds with just enough to cover the question but leaves the reader to ponder some more and, hopefully, dig into the Bible for more answers. I wish more authors provided a Q&A section within their books; a mini-catechism of sorts. This also serves as a good quick-reference guide to the book written in a much more readable form.

Summary

This is a great book for those looking for a quick introduction to the questions they have about the cross and some of the more theological terms associated with it. But of course, this would be an excellent book for anyone who has studied the cross but loves to hear the story again and again.

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