Jesus and the Victory of God

We flew back from Israel today. During the long journey home I was reading Jesus and the Victory of God by N.T. Wright. I can’t tell you how deeply this book has thrilled my soul. It’s like a diamond mine. Every page is a gem. I am now left with no doubt that Tom Wright is the most important Christian writer and theologian of our generation. And it’s quite possible that Jesus and the Victory of God is the most important book I’ve read. It will influence me significantly.

Because of delays on the ground in Newark, the domestic flight to Kansas City was four hours. When we landed at KCI the pilot announced that our gate wouldn’t be ready for another fifteen minutes. I was probably the only person on the plane happy about this. Why? Because I was able to finish the 741 page Jesus and the Victory of God.

When I got home I picked up my next book to read, Tell It Slant by Eugene Peterson. I opened the book at random. Peterson happened to be talking about seven writers he likes very much. Number one on his list, N.T. Wright. Here’s part of what Peterson says:

Better than anyone else I know in my generation, Tom Wright, with immense patience, has given painstaking attention to the words of Jesus, the actions of Jesus, the world-encompassing story at which Jesus is the center. The three volumes I recommend are, The New Testament and the People of God, Jesus and the Victory of God, The Resurrection of the Son of God. They are immense, but immensely readable. Plan to spend a year reading each one of them. They are that good.

I couldn’t agree more.

Alright, that’s all I have to say. I’m jet-lagged and too tired to think or write, but I just had to tell someone how important I think Jesus and the Victory of God is. I only wish I had read it ten years ago.

Read good books.

Life is too short to read dumb books.

Or at least attend a church where the pastor reads good books.

It’s a vocational responsibility for a preacher to read good books.

As John Wesley charged his ministers: “Read, or get out of the ministry.”

Here’s to good books!