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The Jesus I Never Knew Paperback – February 11, 2002
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From the Back Cover
There is no writer in the evangelical world that I admire and appreciate more.
Philip Yancey helps reveal what two thousand years of history covered up
What happens when a respected Christian journalist decides to put his preconceptions aside and take a long look at the Jesus described in the Gospels? How does the Jesus of the New Testament compare to the new, rediscovered Jesus--or even the Jesus we think we know so well?
Philip Yancey offers a new and different perspective on the life of Christ and his work--his teachings, his miracles, his death and resurrection--and ultimately, who he was and why he came. From the manger in Bethlehem to the cross in Jerusalem, Yancey presents a complex character who generates questions as well as answers; a disturbing and exhilarating Jesus who wants to radically transform your life and stretch your faith.
The Jesus I Never Knew uncovers a Jesus who is brilliant, creative, challenging, fearless, compassionate, unpredictable, and ultimately satisfying. No one who meets Jesus ever stays the same, says Yancey. Jesus has rocked my own preconceptions and has made me ask hard questions about why those of us who bear his name don't do a better job of following him.
About the Author
Philip Yancey serves as editor-at-large for Christianity Today magazine. He has written thirteen Gold Medallion Award-winning books and won two ECPA Book of the Year awards for What's So Amazing About Grace? and The Jesus I Never Knew. Four of his books have sold over one million copies. Yancey lives with his wife in Colorado. Learn more at philipyancey.com
Top customer reviews
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It’s a fascinating book, and it’s great for anyone who wants to know Jesus better--especially since it points the reader to the Bible. There’s no off-the-wall theology here, just good gospel truth presented in a well-written, down-to-earth, interesting way.
The book is full of tidbits that reveal how much research and hard work Mr. Yancey put into the book--details about Jesus from history (and from modern movies about him), how different people or cultures view Jesus, quotes about Jesus, and much, much more. I worked through the book a little every day for a few weeks, and I’m glad I did.
In the end, of course, the important thing is knowing Jesus, no matter how you see him. Then you can spend eternity getting to know him better.
Trans. The more you know him, the more you want to know him
Jesus can become over-familiar in so many ways. We associate him with the stories told to us as children. We become fixated on the Christmas story - often not the Gospel version. He becomes an over-cuddly friend.
Philip Yancey wrote his book some time ago, but its edge to cut through our existing view of Jesus is still keen. Some of the themes are not as fresh as when written - in particular, the idea that Jesus was, in fact, a Jew and not a specimen of the Aryan race has become more common. More preachers now focus on what it means for Jesus to have been a Jew than would have done when this classic was first penned.
But this book still has plenty to challenge. Yancey examines both the person and teachings of Jesus and many of his observations were simply things that I had not thought of. He looks at how the Temptation of Jesus illustrates God's great restraint and how this restraint echoes through Jesus' story - particularly his crucifixion and ascension.
He spends a chapter on his meditations on the Beatitudes, contrasting the versions in Matthew and Luke to throw up why God would prefer the weak, the sick, the poor to the strong, the well, the rich.
He looks at what it means for us to be the body of Christ turning the question of "Where is God when X happens?" to "Where is the Church when X happens?", "Where are you - Christ's follower - when X happens?".
He examines the expectations of the Jews of the first century for their Messiah with our expectations of the Second Coming. He shows how in many ways we fall into the same traps as those early Jews. He asks questions about the compatibility of Christianity and the state. Can a Christian state even exist?
Throughout the book, Yancey raises tantalising and challenging questions. He doesn't always answer the questions, but he provides a lot of food for thought and prayer. I would recommend this book to any Christian whose view of Jesus may have become stale or over-familiar.