I’m only about halfway through it, but I’m already convinced that Bryan Chapell’s contribution to the Reformed Expository Commentary series is the best book I’ve read in a while. He’s a reliable guide to Ephesians and an excellent communicator. I hope to have a full review next week or the week after, but for now here’s just a sample of what I love about this book. This is from the chapter on Ephesians 3:14-19:
When Christian leaders see this wonderful truth of Scripture — that power follows love — our calling becomes very clear. It is our duty, our privilege, our delight to engender in those that we want to grow in grace and holiness an ever greater love for Christ. How do we do this? We engender love the way that the apostle does: we proclaim how great is Christ’s love for us.
“Filling up” with love for God is the object not merely of our private duties but also of our ministries to others. When we understand that the primary obligation of our preaching is to have God’s people embrace the wonders of his love so that they can serve Christ with power, then preaching becomes a wondrous and joyful task. Our mission is to reach the wounded and rebellious hearts with the compelling love of Christ. Our ministry becomes more appealing even in our own minds when we understand that our task is more to buoy God’s people with his love than to burden them with his displeasure. Because the joy of the Lord is his people’s strength, we always minister with the aim of providing the hope that enables others to progress in their walk of faith. (165-166, emphasis added)
Can anyone tell that Chapell is a seminary professor who teaches homiletics? Thanks for the reminder, Professor Chapell. I’ve learned a lot from you.