Easter = Restart

New publication on The Life of Christ


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Book page courtesy of the American Bible Society

There is a timely new tool for those who yearn to know Christ and for those who yearn to know him better. The Life of Christ is a new book produced in a partnership between Time Inc. Home Entertainment and the American Bible Society. This beautifully illustrated volume helps readers at many levels of biblical scholarship explore the world of Jesus, in words and pictures.

Each chapter is a visual feast that delves into a different facet of Jesus’ life and ministry. In the pages that describe how he taught, a large pearl is placed next to the famous parable (Matthew 13.45, 46). A lamb and an abstract design of a bloodied doorpost stands opposite an explanation of the traditions of Passover. Easy-to-read charts and graphs also tell his story; one shows how the promises of the Old Testament were fulfilled in him, and another chronicles his post-Resurrection appearances. One table is devoted to exploring the various Jewish sects of first-century Judea.

“Contemporary culture is very visually oriented,” says Barbara Bernstengel of the Nida Institute for Biblical Scholarship, who worked closely with scholars and authors to help produce the book. “The graphics here are very important. They are designed to engage people who might normally not pick up a Bible. One gets the background of the culture next to messages from the Bible, in an engaging way, so that everything fits together.”

The book answers questions that readers might not know they had. What were the medical reasons for death on the cross? (Hypovolemic shock may have played a role, page 105.) Did Jesus make an appearance in any official Roman documents? (The historian Flavius Josephus wrote about “a wise man . . . called Jesus,” page 40.)

Following the long-standing tradition of the American Bible Society, this book does not promote any doctrinal note or comment. However, the book does provide compelling reasons and arguments for the divinity of Christ, which may be helpful when discussing the Bible with others. It addresses the existence of apocryphal gospels, such as those mentioned in The Da Vinci Code. It also includes thoughtful comments from such biblical thinkers as C.S. Lewis.

But the beautiful pages might themselves be the best window to the Bible at Easter. Ms. Bernstengel made a gift of a similar book, Inside the Mysteries of the Bible, also published by the Bible Society and Time Inc., to one of her relatives for Christmas. As soon as she showed her friends, requests for the book came pouring in. “I know that this new book will touch people’s lives,” she says.

Thanks to the support of our faithful financial partners, American Bible Society has been engaging people with the life-changing message of God’s Word for more than 200 years.

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