Church Library – April, 2011

N. T. Wright, who wrote the series of New Testament studies recently added to the Library, has also written several books about Christian belief and life.

Why do we expect justice? Why do we crave spirituality? Why are we attracted to beauty? Why are relationships often so painful? In Simply Christian; Why Christianity Makes Sense (230 W), Wright argues that each of these questions takes us into the mystery of who God is and what he wants from us. For two thousand years, Christianity has claimed to answer these mysteries, and this biblical scholar and Anglican bishop shows that it still does today. Like C. S. Lewis did in his classic Mere Christianity, Wright describes Christian faith from the ground up, assuming that the reader is starting with no predisposition to and perhaps even some negativity toward religion in general and Christianity in particular. His goal is to describe what Christianity is all about, both to commend it to those outside the faith and to explain it to those inside.

Wright has also tackled the question of how Christians should live in the here and now. After You Believe; Why Christian Character Matters (241 W), discusses how we can develop a character suited for God’s kingdom. Drawing on scripture as well as such classical writers as Aristotle, he asserts that true transformation comes through the work of the Holy Spirit and through worship, mission, and following Jesus. As the habits of virtue grow, the church community will become the royal priesthood it is meant to be, anticipating God’s coming new world. As a combination of traditional biblical interpretation and an emphasis on contemporary social justice, this book “is deep Christian wisdom for a bewildered age.”