Four stories about Jesus and this is the oldest. It is also the quickest since every event in Jesus’ life seems to have happened immediately after the last. Yet what sets this account apart is that it speaks dramatically of Christ’s authority and the draw that he had as people heard and felt the weight of that connection to the Father.
In his signature style, R.C. Sproul present this full exposition of the gospel account with Christ’s authority as its central theme. His accessible discourse provides a look at the gospel nearly verse by verse as he not only talks about the passage itself, but connects it with the rest of the book and its significance to the life of Christ and our foundational belief as Christians.
I found his discussion of the Olivet Discourse (Mark 13) especially helpful. The chapter contains arguably the most controversial part of the account, even among Christians. Jesus’ predictions of the “coming of the Son of Man” and for the “end of the age” have sparked denominational divides and atheistic attacks alike. Sproul does a great job presenting what I agree is likely the closest interpretation of these passages as they would have been heard by the apostles and in terms of the events of the day.
Calling the book and “expositional commentary” is a bit of a misnomer. I expected a thorough scholarly work and with that perspective it is seriously lacking. However, it serves well as a “reader’s commentary” in which Sproul does an exposition on each passage in a more pastoral style by including an application and helpful illustration to many. It also read a bit more like a devotional as several points were restated in subsequent chapters, to the extent that I even checked to make sure that I had not skipped back to a previous chapter.
Overall it was a very helpful volume and I will definitely be looking for others as they are made available. I would recommend it to really any Christian, but specifically to those who may be reading the gospels for the first time or even for those who have all but memorized these passages as a way to invigorate your reading with a fresh perspective.
Copy of book provided by publisher for review.