If you’re looking for a solid, biblical, and historic Christian book that is a basic study of who Jesus is, you’ll have to get this one: Thinking Rightly of Christ by Bryan Holstrom. (Side note: Andrew has interviewed Bryan here before, and noted another helpful book he has written, namely, Infant Baptism and the Silence of the New Testament). This one, Thinking Rightly of Christ, is a book that simply summarizes the Bible’s teaching about Jesus.
Holstrom starts out with a short lament:
“…If we’re honest about it, we would have to admit that far too much of the world’s thinking has infiltrated the confines of the visible church in our age. The Christ who is proclaimed from many a pulpit, and taught in a great many seminaries today, often bears little resemblance to him who is set forth in Scripture as the King of kings and Lord of lords.”
He goes on to note that even many of us who are mature Christians don’t have a robust and full biblical understanding of who Christ is. So he wrote this book to help us know the Lord Jesus better.
“The purpose of this book is to correct such deficient thinking about Christ, particularly among Christians, and to replace our false conceptions of his person and work with one befitting the Creator of the heavens and the earth, who upholds all things by the word of his power (Heb. 1:2-3). To that end, each of the twenty chapters seeks to expound upon a truth statement drawn directly from Scripture that touches upon the subject at hand. Those familiar with the Bible will appreciate that there are literally hundreds of truth statements about the person and work of Christ, any one of which could have been the subject of a separate chapter here” (p. 15).
Holstrom chose to stick with twenty statements that people misunderstand, are clear but underappreciated, and/or those that have been attacked or ignored (p. 15). So this book doesn’t summarize every single statement the Bible makes about Christ, but it gives the reader twenty important truths about the Son of God that will help strengthen their faith in him.
I won’t list all the chapters here since you can see a preview on Amazon (here). I do want to say, however, that this book would be great for a small group or individual study. Each chapter is between 10 and 15 pages which might be the topic for one discussion/study. This book is probably not for new Christians (it might be too detailed for them), but it is a good one for Christians who want to sit down and study – in detail – exactly who the Bible says Jesus is. Each chapter even begins with a Scripture reference that might be memorized to the reader further grow in knowledge of the Messiah. Come to think of it, this might be good “devotional” reading for those of you who want to sit and read 10-15 pages per day.
It would be helpful if there were study questions for each chapter and a Scripture index at the back of the book, but the content is solid and I very much recommend it. In fact, I might use Thinking Rightly of Christ for teaching material in the future – it is a great 20-week (20-chapter) study course on the person and work of Jesus from Christian, biblical perspective. If you want a biblical answer for the biblical question, “Who do you say that I am?” you’ll want get this book!