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Encounters With Jesus
Unexpected Answers To Life's Biggest Questions
by Timothy Keller
Publisher:Hodder and Stoughton
One of the joys of reviewing books is that from to time an absolute cracker crosses your desk and catches you completely unawares. Encounters with Jesus is one such book. This is an absolute delight to read—engaging, imaginative and genuinely original.
Essentially, Encounters with Jesus offers the reader ten bible studies on physical encounters Jesus had as reported in the gospel of John.
Whereas some biblical scholars would analyse these encounters from a doctrinal or historical or cultural or linguistic perspective, Timothy Keller focuses instead of what Jesus is teaching us about the really big questions of life—why are we here? What is the world for? What’s wrong with it? what can we do about it?
His approach is rooted in an approach to scripture focused on ‘listening to the text’, which for me means lectio divina. What happens to our understanding of scripture when we allow ourselves to dwell in it?
Encounters with Jesus is based on two distinct lecture series that the author undertook on both sides of the Atlantic—although this is not too apparent to the reader. The first five encounters are therefore focused on individual encounters and the second five on pivotal events in Jesus’ life.
One little niggle is that the biblical references for the ten encounters are not listed on the contents page under the chapter headings—that would be a huge gain for preachers like me! I will pencil them in.
Nonetheless, together these 10 encounters make for absolutely compelling reading. Enjoy!
Reviewer: David Ford (05/07/14)