- My first seminary class at Dallas... Review by Richard Mayhan
My first seminary class at Dallas Theological Seminary was Hermeneutics with Dr. Howard Hendricks. My first homework assignment in this class was to make 100 observations on Matthew 28:18-20, the Great Commission. I jumped into this new world with both feet and cranked out 101 -- I was quite proud. Imagine my astonishment with our second assignment was to do make another 100 observations on the same passage. By the time that was done I was a changed man. I never even looked at a leaf the same way again.
John Piper does this on the topic of Jesus' death in Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die. I chose the audio book narrated by Robertson Dean. Dean is a major improvement over Grover Gardner, the pompous narrator I suffered through while listening to Desiring God by Piper. His steady rendition makes for easy listening.
I treated this book as devotional and it works as that, each of the 50 reasons stands on its own. I would listen to 3-4 in a sitting. It doesn't entirely work for this because a good bit of the reasons are quite technical and have only shades of meaning that are different than the others. It's better taken en toto as a lung-expanding deep sea dive to rekindle appreciation of why Jesus did what He did.
These were my favorites, I'm still trying to get my arms around them:
24 To Give Us Confident Access to the Holiest Place
25 To Become for Us the Place Where We Meet God
26 To Bring the Old Testament Priesthood to an End and Become the Eternal High Priest
27 To Become a Sympathetic and Helpful Priest
I would give Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die four stars.
(Posted on 3/12/10)