Wednesday, May 17, 2006


Bill, a blog friend of mine and owner of Bean Book Services, sent me a copy of Eugene Peterson's brief and very readable book Living the Resurrection: The Risen Christ in Everyday Life (NavPress: 2006). Thanks, Bill.

It's no secret that I have been greatly influenced in my vision of Christian ministry by the person and writings of Eugene H. Peterson. Eugene, to my very happy surprise, wrote the Foreword to my book Jesus the Pastor: Leading Others in the Character and Power of Christ (Zondervan: 2000).

The book unfolds in 3 chapters with an appendix of resurrection Bible texts from The Message.

Chapter 1- Resurrection Wonder

Peterson unpacks the meaning of Sabbath.

Chapter 2- Resurrection Meals

Peterson unpacks the meaning of the Lord's Table.

Chapter 3- Resurrection Friends

Peterson unpacks the meaning of Baptism.

While the book is vintage Peterson, pulsating with his discerning observations about being Jesus-followers in a consumer-based, expert-ordered, self-centered culture, his best stuff, in my opinion, is his discussion of laypersons. "Smart Devil."

"The Devil does some of his best work when he gets Christians to think of themselves as Christian laypersons. In the ordinary use of our language, the term layperson virtually always means not-an-expert. ... Following Jesus gives way to following Jesus-experts. ... I'm a religious consumer, that's true, but a consumer all the same--a soul condition deeply marred by passivity" (89, 91). Accepting layperson status is the grievous sin of "betrayal" (92).

I appreciate Bill making me aware of this book and I hope you'll take the time to read it.


At 5/18/2006 1:09 PM, Anonymous Howard Burgoyne said...

I've read it John, and I agree it is vintage Peterson, and very edifying. It infused my Easter season preaching with fresh urgency and relevance. I also commend his new volume, "Eat This Book" which is absolutely convicting to those of us who consider ourselves biblical scholars. In a world where we have truncated understanding into a mental exercise, Peterson recovers the essential nature of discipleship as apprenticing our whole selves in becoming like the Master. Well worth it!

At 5/18/2006 2:00 PM, Blogger ylmurph said...

I'm on my way to the bookstore...thanks!

At 5/18/2006 8:42 PM, Anonymous Curt said...

So when are you passing it around John?

At 5/19/2006 4:31 AM, Blogger John Frye said...

Thanks for stopping by. We're looking forward to your visit to Grand Rapids with the ECC conference.

At 5/19/2006 4:32 AM, Blogger John Frye said...

good choice!

At 5/19/2006 4:32 AM, Blogger John Frye said...

you're next...

At 5/20/2006 4:01 AM, Anonymous ron said...

John, I was just travelling around the neighbourhood, checkin' out old friends...wonderful to have you back brother.

Man, just reading the title is got me excited, and then add Eugene Peterson. Resurrection is not about us getting to the's about getting the Kingdom " into " us. It's about's as near as a beating heart.

Good to have you back...Peace, Ron+

At 7/03/2006 10:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Eugene Peterson!
I read the Message sometimes and think to myself: This guy really gets it!! The gospel is really as simple as he explains it!

I am a musician and I would be honored if you would check out my music. Its all free for download on my site. Anyway, I just thought that I would share.

"All my music is free."

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