David Murray was a pastor in Scotland for a dozen years before crossing “the pond” in 2007 to take up his present position as Professor of Old Testament and Practical Theology at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary (246). He is also one of my favorite bloggers and blogs regularly at headhearthand.org (and has a Tumblr as well). He has written other books, 1 but Jesus On Every Page: 10 Simple Ways to Seek and Find Christ in The Old Testament is the first one I’ve read and I’ll just start by saying I’d highly recommend it (it’s one of those elusive 5-star books).
First off, it is very conversational, the first 6 chapters detailing Murrary’s own journey toward seeing Christ more clearly in the Old Testament. There first two of these chapters kind of set the stage and address the problem (Christian neglect of OT, you know how it is). Then, the following four chapters move from Jesus, to Peter, to Paul, to John, to show the kind of emphasis each placed on the OT in their NT writings (or quoted sayings in Jesus’ case). With the case clearly made that Jesus and our beloved NT authors think the OT is both important for Christians and revelatory of Jesus’ person and work, Murray then presents his 10 ways of seeking and finding Christ in the OT.
With an alliteration scheme that feels surprisingly unforced, Murray walks us through the following focal points in our Old Testament reading:
- Christ’s Planet: Discovering Jesus in the creation
- Christ’s People: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament characters
- Christ’s Presence: Discovering Jesus in His Old Testament appearances
- Christ’s Precepts: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament law
- Christ’s Past: Discovering Jesus in Old Testament history
- Christ’s Prophets: Discovering Jesus in Old Testament prophets
- Christ’s Pictures: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament types
- Christ’s Promises: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament covenants
- Christ’s Proverbs: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament proverbs
- Christ’s Poets: Discovering Jesus in the Old Testament poems
Within each chapter, Murray unpacks how to best discover Christ in that particular aspect of the Old Testament. He does so with the skill of a homiletitian 2 in his element. He originally wrote a more academic book (223), but thanks to Nancy Guthrie, it became the more accessible and popular level treatment that it now is.
For many readers, this book will not only be an entry-point into seeing Christ in the Old Testament, but will be a crash course in Old Testament theology and structure as well. He covers a lot of ground and touches on a lot of issue in interpreting the Old Testament. Readers who want to dig further have only to consult the endnotes to continue their journey. I was not entirely convinced we should identify the angel of the Lord in the OT with Christ, but Murray makes a compelling case that is leading me to revisit the question as I teach through the Old Testament with my 9th grade Bible class and our college Bible study.
All in all, this is an excellent book and it covers an important subject well. Because of that, I’m excited to be able to offer it as a giveaway. If you’re in RSS, you’ll probably need to click thru to see the giveaway widget. I encourage you to enter the giveaway, but I’d really encourage you to go about and buy the book before the end of the month since you’ll be able to get over $100 worth of free resources. That makes it well worth investment, especially since this is the kind of book you should buy and read anyway even if there weren’t additional free stuff involved. I think you’ll find that it helps you be a better Christian reader of the Old Testament and that’s something all of us could benefit from.
- Author: David Murray
- Title: Jesus On Every Page: 10 Simple Ways to Seek and Find Christ in The Old Testament
- Publisher: Thomas Nelson, (August 20, 2013)
- Paperback: 256pgs
- Reading Level: General Reader
- Audience Appeal: Anyone who wants to read the Old Testament in a more authentically Christ-centered way
- Gratis Review Copy: Yes (courtesy of Thomas Nelson)
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- Christians Get Depressed Too (which my wife said was very helpful) and How Sermons Work ↩
- I’m not actually sure if this is a word, but Murray alliterates in a way that helps you remember his points and headings, but not in a way that is abrasive. He teaches preaching and Old Testament, and in this book those two disciplines leave and cleave and operate as one flesh throughout ↩