Simply Jesus

by N.T. Wright (a summary by Pat Evert)


1 – A very odd sort of King  We want a religious leader, not a king.

2 – The three puzzles  His country was a foreign country quite different from our world today. What He meant when He spoke of God. He spoke and behaved as if all belonged to Him – He is in charge.

3 – The Perfect Storm  Scepticism and conservatism are two opposing winds. A third wind, or hurricane comes up. Maybe we should stay in the safe harbor of traditionalism. This was Gods perfect timing.

4 – The making of a first century storm  The Roman political storm, the Jewish religious storm and the coming of Messiah. Egypt, Babylon and Roman Empire.

5 – The Hurricane The wind of God  God was personally visiting His city. Love like a hurricane. God, and only God, could rule in enduring justice. God is here to exercise His authority in and through Jesus.

6 – God is in charge now  New things have come. The exodus was the great story that kept the Israelites in hope of God. 1) Tyrant, 2) Leader 3) Sacrifice, 4) Deliverance, 5) Covenant 6) Gods presence, 7) promised inheritance.

7 – The campaign starts here  Image the news propagated that the Caesar and his empire are obsolete and God’s new kingdom has begun. All are welcomed, especially the outcasts. It begins with forgiveness and healing. Since John the Baptist, God’s kingdom is breaking through. Like a rebel He begins setting up His kingdom.

8 – Stories that explain and a message that transforms  Kingdom parables are understood by the wrong people, not those we would think would understand. The kingdom appearing on earth. Apocalyptic vision and interpretation. Jesus’ kingdom vision is rejected by many. God’s heavenly purpose is being fulfilled, but many take no notice of it. The need is not moral values, but transformed hearts.

9 – The Kingdom  present and future God’s kingdom comes ever so gently and so slowly. Many messiahs had come before Jesus. Jesus also appeared to be another rebel leader defeated by the Romans. His kingdom is already present and yet to come.

10 – Battle and Temple  All His life Jesus was in a battle, but a very different type of battle than they were used to. He defeated him who is behind all battles.

11 – Space, time and Matter  Jerusalem was the capital of the world, God’s dwelling. Heaven and earth are not distant, but overlap. The temple was the center of banking and debts. Time is progressing to an end. A completion of purpose. The great Sabbath was coming. A new creation, a vessel for His glory. Heaven and earth meet in Jesus. Is God becoming King?

12 – At the heart of the storm  The Servant of YHWH (Three songs in Isaiah). Daniel’s Son of Man. God overcomes all other kingdoms. Zachariah’s vision and the psalms.

13 – Why did the Messiah have to die?  A suffering servant, Messiah and God; all three in One. A supreme sacrifice to bring about a deliverance from the ultimate bondage of death and a new communion between God and man. His death is His great victory. So that God’s kingdom could be on earth, as it is in heaven.

14 – Under new management; Easter and beyond A new world is inaugurated. Jesus is equally at home in heaven as on earth. Heaven and earth are reunited. The new creation overflowing with love. It’s the crucified Jesus that is Lord! He won His victory through suffering.

15 – Jesus: the ruler of the world  Jesus is Lord presently, but how is this displayed? This is God’s work alone. He rules the world through humans. He rescues us to rule through us. We come to reflect Him as we should, the kingdom is implemented through us (through Him). He has poured out His Holy Spirit on us. Has He already returned in His Spirit? The church is His body and we are included in Him. We, He and us, launch new projects. The world’s reaction is similar to that of Jesus day.