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Christianity Today's 2015 Book Awards: The Unbelievable Gospel & The Crucified King
Each year Christianity Today announces a selection of books they feel are most likely to shape evangelical life, thought, and culture. We are pleased the editors have selected two Zondervan Academic titles for inclusion in their 2015 list.
The Unbelievable Gospel, by Jonathan Dodson, was selected as the winner of the Apologetics/Evangelism category. The Crucified King, by Jeremy Treat, received an Award of Merit for its important contribution to Theology/Ethics.
Both books represent the crop of important resources released this year by Zondervan Academic authors touching on the Bible, the church, and other perennial matters of faith. Get more information on these books below, and engage them yourself to understand why CT Magazine believes these books will impact the life of the Church next year, and in the years to come.
Apologetics/Evangelism: The Unbelievable Gospel
Jonathan Dodson's aim in The Unbelievable Gospel "is to recover a believable evangelism, one that moves beyond the cultural and personal barriers we have erected in contemporary evangelism to rediscover the power of the biblical gospel. " (14) His recovery effort isn't merely a revolution in methods, however; it's a reevaluation of evangelism in its entirety: "Our whole understanding of evangelism needs to change—our motivations, our methods, and even our message." (29) If you are looking for a book to help you inspire, challenge, and inform your people on what it means to share Jesus' story, this is the book to both reshape your churches evangelism efforts and revitalize your peoples' faith.
Here is what Trevin Wax, managing editor of The Gospel Project, had to say about Dodson's book:
Dodson rescues evangelism from the formulaic and trite recitation of biblical facts, re-centers it within the grand narrative of Scripture, and refocuses our attention on the particular needs of the person who needs good news. This is a biblically faithful and contextually sensitive approach to evangelism that systematically demolishes the most common obstacles to proclaiming Jesus as Lord.
By Jonathan K. Dodson
Theology/Ethics: The Crucified King
What is the biblical and theological relationship between God's kingdom and the cross? This question sits at the heart of The Crucified King. It explores the interrelationship between the coming of God’s kingdom and Christ’s atoning death on the cross—historically, a relationship fraught with tension. Unfortunately, this separation has bifurcated into an either-or choice: “Some champion the kingdom and others cling to the cross,” Treat writes, “usually one to the exclusion of the other.” (25) Using a holistic approach that brings together the insights of biblical and systematic theology, this book demonstrates not only that the kingdom and the cross are inseparable, but how they are integrated in Scripture and theology.
Fred Sanders, professor at Biola University, said this of Treat's book:
The great, central doctrine of Christianity, the Atonement, has suffered rough treatment in this century from friend and foe alike. It has been pulled apart by false dichotomies, knocked off balance by reactionary overemphasis, displaced, overworked, and buried out of sight. Treat’s calm and sagacious book exorcises a legion of interpretive errors in one smooth argument: Christ brings the kingdom through the Cross.
By Jeremy R. Treat
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