You might be wondering, “Do I really need to read this book?” That is certainly a question I asked myself when I looked at High King of Heaven: Theological and Practical Perspectives on the Person and Work of Jesus. It is always a struggle to find time to read, but it’s important not to just spend time reading, but to read the right books that will aid in personal growth and edification. You could read for hundreds of hours and be no better for it in the end. In fact, you could be even worse off. So let me share with you precisely why this book is worthy of a spot on your summer reading list.
An Understandable Overview of Christology
If you are new to the topic of Christology (the study of Christ’s person and works), this book won’t be lost on you. Unlike many technical books in this area, High King of Heaven assembles the essentials in a soul satisfying way. It is neither overly basic or unnecessarily complex. The book is broken down into four categories: The Person of Christ, The Work of Christ, The Word of Christ, and The Witness to Christ. It aims to help believers become acquainted with and enriched by the major areas of Christological studies, and to this end it is incredibly successful. It stretches all the way from the deity of Christ before time began to His magnificent and triumphant return, and everywhere in between.
High King of Heaven was written by a group of men who are in the upper echelons of their respective fields. This brings more expertise than any single writer could possibly have, but doesn’t sacrifice sound doctrine and cohesion between authors. The well-known contributors are enough to draw in most casual readers, however it contains a treasure trove of authors you might not be as familiar with. In an age where Christian unity is needed to wage the battles against false doctrine, it is encouraging to see so many men from across denominational lines join together to rally behind all-important allegiance to the High King of Heaven.
Whether you are interested in the incarnation from the eternal sonship of Christ, the virgin conception of Jesus, the kenosis in the incarnation, the atonement, the resurrection, or the ascension you will always find the soundness and careful scholarship you have come to expect from these faithful stewards. Some personal favorites of mine were: The Eternal Word (Michael Reeves), The Bread of Life (Ligon Duncan), The Good Shepherd (Steve Lawson), The Head of the Church (Mark Dever), He Emptied Himself (Mike Riccardi), and In Our Place (Matthew Barrett). This barely scratches the surface of the exceptional articles and writers this volume contains.
Brings Readers to Worship
Furthermore, I would commend this book because of the way it calls believers to worship. The title alone, High King of Heaven, is enough to cause contemplative worship. The doctrinal depth found in this book causes the careful reader to worship the high and exalted God of the universe. Many times we focus on one element of Christ’s work—the cross (and rightly so). But often this is to the neglect of the other praiseworthy elements of His person and work. This volume helps introduce you to the major Christological themes in Scripture and leads you carefully to the throne room of praise.
A Timely Necessity
High King of Heaven is a reminder that Christianity wasn’t formed in a vacuum. It crosses denominational boundaries and unites all of God’s elect in the centrality of the truth of Christ. When crucial Christian truths are constantly assaulted by society (and in many pulpits), the church needs strong detailed evidence, more biblical analysis, thoroughly convincing arguments, deeper theological insight, and life-giving doctrine. That is what you get in High King of Heaven.
It is a shame on the contemporary church that more books like this are not on the shelves of Christian bookstores. Instead, they are filled with more fiction, shallow thinking, entertainment, and self-help than any other period in Church history. If you want to see your church, family, and society transformed, come drink from the well of Christ contained in this book. It is comforting to know that this book puts the real Christ of the real Christianity on magnificent display.
Knowing more about Jesus deepens your capacity to love Him and serve Him. If you are looking for a book that will stretch you in your previous contemplation of Christ, if you want to worship Him in ways you may have previously neglected, or if you just want your soul enriched and nourished, this book is for you.