The life of Jesus is truly the greatest story ever told. God incarnate coming to earth through the miraculous virgin birth foretold so long ago for the purpose of being the perfect sacrifice for sin is a historical series of events unmatched in the history of the world. It is no wonder the Gospel accounts are such a treasured part of Scripture. With that said, given there are four separate accounts of the life of Jesus, walking through the life of Jesus in a chronological manner can be a bit of a challenge at times. Russ Ramsey, in his excellent book Behold the King of Glory, provides a narrative account of the life of Jesus the Messiah.
Ramsay notes in the preface to his book that his approach to writing a narrative account of the life of Jesus is based on a Johannine style of writing as close to what one would find in the Gospel of John as possible. A third person narrative is used with Ramsay “making no direct eye contact with the reader until the end.” This writing methodology provides the reader with short and engaging chapters that can be used as a devotional reading or that can be read several chapters at a time. However one chooses to read this book, they will find Ramsay’s effort to be quite excellent.
While written with a definite effort to tell a story, the important theological aspects of the life of Jesus are not overlooked by Ramsay. The reader will find themselves drawn into the storyline in much the same way they would be drawn into a masterfully written classic such as that written by the likes of Charles Dickens or Jane Austin. What sets Ramsay’s effort apart from such noted writers of fiction is he provides the reader with a journey into the life of a real-life person, namely that of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. I found myself transported to the first century, feeling as if I was in the crowd listening to Jesus teach his disciples the Sermon on the Mount or actually feeling as if I was in attendance at the wedding at Cana when Jesus turned the water into wine.
Ramsay has a definite gift of being able to share the glorious message of the gospel as revealed in the life of Jesus in a way that is very readable yet loses none of the Bible’s theological punch nor the importance of what Jesus did on our behalf. This is no mere child’s bedtime story or something for a bit of life reading. What Ramsay has encapsulated into the forty chapters of this book is the life of the most pivotal man in all of history, the Messiah who lived a perfect life and who died on the cross and rose again to conquer sin and death for us. Embedded in each chapter of this book is that beautiful and important message. Behind the skilled storytelling and writing is a passionate plea by Ramsay for the reader to pay attention to what Jesus came to do and what he accomplished on our behalf.
This book is titled Behold the King of Glory for a reason and that reason is felt throughout this book, namely Ramsay’s effort to reveal how the story of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus reveals that he is the Lamb of God. That is the message of this book and rightfully so. Resonating on each page is a declaration that Jesus is Lord and thus he is worthy of our worship and focus.
I very highly recommend this book for all believers. In fact, this book would be excellent for new believers as a helpful one-stop reading of all the Gospel accounts. Ideal for use as a devotional or for general reading and study purposes, this book should find its way into your library immediately. You will be challenged, encouraged, and at the end of the book you will find yourself in thankful praise and adoration of Jesus our Messiah.
This book is available for purchase from Crossway Books by clicking here.
Michael lives in Belleville, IL, a suburb of St. Louis, MO with his wife Erica, adopted daughter Alissa, two cats Molly and Sweetie Pie and horse Beckham. After spending eight years in the United States Navy as a Yeoman, he has been employed for the past ten years by the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) where he oversees advanced educational programs. Michael holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Religion (Biblical Studies) from Liberty University and is currently closing in on completing a Master of Arts in Religion (Biblical Studies) from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. He is an avid reader and blogger.