I really enjoyed Mark Jones’ book Knowing Christ. My christology, in particular my understanding of Christ’s humanity, was greatly aided by this book. His extensive use of the Puritans was an added benefit. I also enjoyed that Jones doesn’t treat Christ like an object to be studied, but like a wonderful Savior, Lord, and King. He often breaks out in doxology. I will be referring to it often and it has been a great help as I preach through Hebrews. I highly recommend the book. Here are ten of my favorite quotes from this book. Everything below is a quote from the book, though I only blocked out every other quote.
Keeping the law with the “whole heart” [a reference to Psalm 119:34] may be understood legally or evangelically. In a legal sense, only Christ loved God with his whole heart because the law requires perfect conformity, which we are unable to give. Nonetheless, in an evangelical sense, God, out of his love and mercy in Christ, enables us to love him with our whole heart.
Redemption, which we have only through Christ, is still inferior compared with the worth and glory of his person.
The Christian grace of humility begins by imitating the incarnation of the Son of God.
The eternal God infallibly knows all things past, present, and future. He knows himself perfectly. Not only does he perfectly know all things that he has created, including his decree of events yet to happen, but also he has perfect knowledge of things outside of his decree. In other works, he knows things that are possible, things which could be wrought by his power, but will lie wrapped up in darkness to any human or angel.
Christ’s obedience in our place needed to be real obedience from a man. Jesus did not ‘cheat’ by relying on his divine nature while he acted as the second Adam.
Not expressing anger in the presence of injustice is not a sign of godliness, but rather of moral weakness. As Warfield claims: ‘The emotions of indignation and anger belong…to the very self-expression of a moral being as such and cannot be lacking to him in the presence of wrong.’ Christ always had the ‘mind of God’. Jesus thought God’s thoughts after him. Accordingly, the very things that cause God anger inevitably enraged Jesus while on earth, such as wilful hard-hearted unbelief expressed by his own people.
Nothing should keep our minds busier on earth than this great reality: the Holy One of God was declared unholy, so that unholy sinners might stand unblemished before a holy God.
If our sins are forgiven, then nothing else really matters in this world. This is the blessing that distinguishes the Christian religion from all others. Sinners are freely forgiven by a merciful God through the sin-bearing death of Christ on the cross. Such is the greatest mercy we can receive from his hand, and every other mercy is judgment if it is not accompanied by such pardon.
Possessing an appetite for the deep mysteries of the gospel is the sign of healthy soul, and teachers must bring God’s people into a deep acquaintance with these precious truths. The intercession of Christ is a doctrine that Christians cannot afford to be ignorant about, considering how many comforting truths arise from Christ’s heavenly ministry. [The chapter on Christ’s Intercession was one of my favorites.]
No one knows the wrath of God like the Son of God. After all, the Lamb of God was roasted in the fire of God’s wrath; he was in the fiery furnace during the three hours of darkness at Golgotha. God’s people, as a result, have Christ’s entire garment upon them…There are important implications to these truths. First, most people are not clothed with Christ’s garment, and the fire of hell will certainly singe them for all eternity. Second, Christ, who experienced the wrath of God, will also execute his wrath upon all the ungodly. One would have to excise a large part of the Scriptures to deny this truth.
For Christians, the closest (and best) picture we have of Christ while pilgrims on earth is that in the elements of the bread and wine given to us in the Lord’s Supper-the elements we view by sight, but which are ultimately of no use unless received by faith. The joy of communing with our risen Savior in the sacrament does not come through pictures, but in the blessing of a faith-filled observance.