Monday, July 12, 2010

"Jesus Christ: Prophet Priest" by Andrew Murray

This book was amazing. It was so good to read Andrew Murray again; he really knows how to communicate deep truths about Jesus more than anyone.

This book is on the short side; and actually is a written version of 4 of his spoken sermons.

Section 1 is on Jesus as our Prophet, Priest, and King.
Murray discusses how Jesus was the ultimate Prophet, Priest, and King. And how these different roles minister to our innermost being. He brings up the 3 "faculties" of man= mind, heart, and will. And then he proceeds to talk about how each of these faculties are damaged by sin, yet can find light and blessing through Christ. He says that Christ the Prophet shows our minds how lost and broken we are; then Christ the Priest shows the way to God and the love and acceptance therein. Lastly Christ the King is fit to rule over my life. It's a really nice picture of how our anxious hearts can go to the One with the answers.

Section 2 is on Jesus the Completion of Priesthood
He speaks in this section about the work of the cross. At first he gives a theology for why Jesus needed to be fully God and fully man; then goes on to talk about our nature. An ox is completely satisfied in a field of green grass; whereas we could never be satisfied with that. It's because the ox has a different nature than we do; and our nature has to be transformed - we need to be "born again". "I must have a nature in harmony with the Kingdom." (p.30)
Another blessing of this new nature, or heart, is that the law of God is written on our hearts. He speaks about it this way: "When I speak of an acorn, how do I know that it will grow up into a mighty oak tree that may stand for a hundred years? Because the law of the oak tree has been written on the heart of the acorn." (p.29) In the same way, having Christ within us gives us the chance to grow in huge ways because of the nature he brings into our souls. "Jesus, the High Priest, does His work within us. He gives us His own life." (p.33) He claims that this point isn't thought about often enough. He says we often talk about the external/legal/transactional element of Christ's redemption - but may skip over the internal redeeming presence of Christ within our hearts.

Section 3 is called, "The Lord Jesus Christ: Our Way into the Holiest"
In this section he muses on how for 1500 years, our God sent a message to all people that they are not worthy to come too near to God. The veil in the temple, the holy-of-holies, the whole priestly sacrificial system. And then on the day of the cross, the veil was ripped open! We live in a privileged time. Furthermore, Christ provides the ability to walk with Him. A "new and living way" according to Scripture. If we moan and say, We can't walk with God! It's too hard! He urges us to think about what walking with Christ is actually like. He gives an example of walking on a sidewalk and getting tired, and says - the sidewalk won't carry you by itself, because the sidewalk is dead. But we have a NEW and LIVING WAY- something (someOne really) who does carry us forward when we are too tired to take another step.

Section 4 is about Jesus being the food for our soul
In this section, Murray describes how food and nourishment works; then he talks about how we are to eat Christ - and then God will Himself release the nutrients into our bodies and strengthen us from within. "God has ordered everything so that the assimilation goes on quietly without any effort on your part, and without your noticing it...The eating is your work, the inward assimilation is God's work." (p.61)

A very good read overall! I highly recommend it, or any other Murray book having to do with Jesus.

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