Fact: the resurrection of Jesus Christ is the most consequential event in the entirety of human history. It is through this one event that the Christian faith has spread from a handful of followers in the Middle East throughout the world. Yet, many self professing believers tare left asking the question does the resurrection still matter today? In his new book Hope in Times of Fear: The Resurrection and the Meaning of Easter (Viking, 2021), pastor and author Timothy Keller answers this question with a resounding yes! Keller argues that not only the resurrection does matter, it is the sole hope for those who place their faith in Jesus.
In the book, Keller discusses how the resurrection of Jesus affects various aspects of life from our private lives, to relationships, and even society as a whole. He shares how the resurrection gives hope in suffering and points us to a real sense of justice in the world. Keller calls the resurrection the “great reversal”, by which he means that the death and resurrection of Jesus is not how the world defines success. The world puts its hope in greatness, comfort, and status. Yet, Jesus told his followers that the first would be last and the last would be first. This sets on its head the greatest wisdom the world has to offer. Even the Apostle Paul said that the death and resurrection was foolishness to world, but to those who trust in its power it is life.
Written during the middle of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Hope in Times of Fear is a refreshing reminder of the beauty and significance of the resurrection. Through the resurrection of Jesus believers have a certain, rock solid, and glorious hope that this life is not all there is. One day, Jesus will wipe away every tear and make right everything that has gone wrong in this world because of the effects of sin. A day is coming that there will be no more pain, death, or global pandemics. And this is not a “hope so” faith, but a hope that is grounded in the certainty of the resurrection of Jesus.
I would highly recommend Hope in Times of Fear, as with everything that Timothy Keller writes it is challenging and encouraging. This book is especially timely as the world emerges from the worst global pandemic in a century. The past year has brought such pain and loss to so many, and has disrupted the lives of everyone. Yet, there is hope in this suffering that Jesus is alive and is sovereign over not only global suffering, but our personal suffering as well. He meets where we are and makes us who wants us to be, by the power of His Spirit. This is a must read.
Editor’s Note: I received this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.