Living for God: A Short Introduction to the Christian Faith – Mark Jones (2020)

Mark Jones, Living for God: A Short Introduction to the Christian Faith (Wheaton: Crossway, 2020), 262 pp.

Introductory books to the Christian faith are a “dime a dozen” these days. My usual response is to pass on such books since many of them are doctrinally weak and shallow. Living for God: A Short Introduction to the Christian Faith by Mark Jones is an exception to the rule. This book is anything but weak and moves readers from the “shore” to the “deep end” of the pool.

The first two sentences in the book are important and set the stage for what follows: “Living for God. True living is when we live for God.” Jones adds, “Our approach to the Christian life must be grounded in the conviction that sound doctrine and godly living go hand in hand, with the former providing the foundation for the latter.” Unfortunately, many pastors and authors either jettison sound doctrine or minimize the importance of godliness. Jones maintains that doctrine is the “engine” that drives our Christian lives. “Doctrine and life are inextricably linked,” Jones writes. “Indicatives lead to imperatives.”

Living for God is arranged in five parts:

  1. A Trinity Oriented Life
  2. The Christ-Focused Life
  3. The Spirit-Energized Life
  4. The Church Inhabited Life
  5. The Heaven-Anticipated Life

In short chapters, the author presents clear and biblical instruction that guides readers into truth. These chapters are both readable and reliable guides for the people of God. No shortcuts are taken. Rather, Jones uses his writing gift to instruct and edify willing readers.

In the end, what really matters is that Christians are living for God. This challenge is nicely summarized by Jones, which is also a summary of his well-written book:

Live then, my brothers and sisters in Christ, a Trinity-oriented, Christ-focused, Spirit-energized, church-inhabited, and heaven-anticipated life for the glory of God and the good of your soul.

I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.

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