Monday, November 24, 2014

Book Review: Look and Live

Look and Live. Matt Papa. 2014. Bethany House. 256 pages. [Source: Review copy]

Matt Papa's Look and Live is a book about the glory of God. It is a book about worship. About what we may falsely be worshipping--perhaps without even realizing it. About what we should be worshipping instead. It is about about the greatness and goodness of God. It is a book that challenges readers to seek to know God more and more, and in response to that seeking and knowing and growing and loving to worship him more fully. It isn't just a book about worship. It's a book about how to live for the glory of God; how seeing God's glory changes you and changes how you want to live.

Table of contents:

  • Glory and Worship
  • The Glory of God
  • Bad Aim (Glory and Sin)
  • The Blazing Center
  • Let My Eyes Adjust
  • Scattered Beams
  • Glory and Mission
  • Glory and Suffering
  • Show Me Your Glory

It is a book that is easy to recommend. There were two chapters that were just my favorite and best. I loved, loved, loved "The Blazing Center" and "Let My Eyes Adjust." The whole book is good, mind you, but those two chapters were GREAT.

Why does Jesus, after rising from the dead, still bear His scars? It can't be for no reason. It has to be because God wanted every eternal sight of Him to be filled with the memory of His love. In Revelation 5 we are told that this is exactly where all of history is heading. Time will culminate and all eternity will commemorate a Lamb that has been slaughtered, "who purchased…men for God from every tribe and tongue" (Rev. 5:9). In Revelation 13 we are told that this was God's design--that before the dawn of time there was a book, and the book was called "the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain" (Rev 13:8). God designed the slaughter of His Son before the world so that His goodness might be eternally adored. Throughout eternity, we will still be peering at the cross. With awe, wonder, and surprise. (89)
Worship is war. The call is to behold the Son of God, not merely look at Him. It is to gaze deep into the gospel, not merely pray some prayer and then move on. We must linger. Christianity is the hard, joyful journey of beholding Jesus by faith until the day you behold Him by sight. (119)
This word meditate is the Hebrew word for a cow chewing its cud. The cow chews the grass, it goes down into the cow's stomach, and then comes back up again. It chews some more, swallows, then it comes back up again. Sounds gross, right? But this is how we grow in Christ and how we see His glory. We wrestle with the Bible. We chew and swallow and chew and swallow and think and apply. We let our eyes adjust. (127)
We read the Bible to see Glory. We read the Bible to gaze deeper into the story of the gospel. We read the Bible to behold Jesus. (127)
Legalism is when I feel that I am more loved by God when I obey Him. It is not legalism to obey God even when it's hard because I want to see Him. It's not legalism when you spend time in the Word even when it feels temporarily fruitless when you're doing it with a heart that cries out, "God, I want more of You" instead of "All right, I've done my time for the day. Check." (132)

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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