Review: The Grieving Sisters by Timothy Keller

5 out of 5 Stars
Author: Timothy Keller
Publisher: Dutton / Penguin
Reading Level: Easy

The Grieving Sisters has no mor than a handful of pages but it’s powerful. In it, Timothy Keller examines the story of the death of Lazarus. The focus rests squarely on Jesus’s response to Mary and Martha. Keller notes both sisters respond verbally the same way “if you were here Lazarus wouldn’t have died.” He then notes the different ways Jesus responds to the grieving sisters.

For Martha his responds with truly about his divinity. “I am the Resurrection and the Life.” He expounds theological truth. He comforts her with his Godhead--an assurance of Lazarus’s own life. For Mary he responds with human compassion. She asks him the same question but Jesus sees her weeping and responds with tears. Keller expounds John 11:38

I get frustrated with virtually every English translation of verse 38. Here we read it say “Jesus, once more deeply moved, came to the tomb.” But this verse contains a Greek word that means “to bellow with anger,” and somehow no translator feels that he or she has the freedom to say what every commentator and Greek expert says the text is saying. Jesus is absolutely furious. He’s bellowing with rage— he is roaring. Who or what is he angry at? There is no indication that he’s angry at the family. Then what is it? (Kindle Locations 188-192). 

Jesus provides the fullest revelation of his humanity.

Such a wonderful and insightful exposition of John 11. You could give it to a grieving friend. You could read it for its masterful revelation of Jesus. Or you could use as a lesson in expounding the text in a Christ-centered way. I would highly recommend it and also the series (The Encounters with Jesus) as a whole.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the Penguin/Dutton. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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