There are very few authors whose books I pre-order as soon as I know they are coming out, but Tim Keller is one of those authors. Just after the release of The Reason for God, a good friend of mine who was an elder at Redeemer Presbyterian Church suggested that I read the book. I told him honestly that I had never heard of Tim Keller, and that I had plenty of books on apologetics. “You’ll be hearing a lot more about him,” said the friend. That turned out to be quite an understatement.

King’s Cross: The Story of the World in the Life of Jesus is Keller’s latest offering, and his first under Dutton’s new Redeemer imprint. Keller looks at the life of Christ as revealed in the Gospel of Mark. Keller says that he chose Mark’s account because of its focus on Christ’s words and deeds, without a lot of explanation. Mark’s Gospel is action-packed. He uses the word “immediately” often to transition from one event to another. Keller shows us how Mark divides his biography of Christ into two symmetrical parts – Jesus’ identity as King over all things and Jesus’ purpose in dying on the cross. Jesus’ identity as a King who was headed to a cross is as perplexing to readers of Scripture today as it was to those in the first century. The fact that Jesus came not to be served but to die sets Him apart from the founder of every other major religion, Keller points out. The gospel of Jesus Christ is far more than empty religion, it is life-changing love – “because all real life-changing love is substitutionary sacrifice.” As in everything Keller writes, the gospel is central and the deep need of both unbelievers and believers for the gospel is made clear.

King’s Cross: The Story of the World in the Life of Jesus is a brilliant exposition of the Gospel of Mark, displaying both Christ’s identity as King and his purpose as Savior. Both the skeptic and the believer will see Jesus as they have never seen him before. To say I highly recommend this book would be an understatement.

For more information on the book, including a trailer by Tim Keller and free book excerpts, check out Books & Resources by Timothy Keller.

Here is a longer version of this review that I wrote for the Biblical Counseling Coalition website.