Thursday, March 15, 2018

Book Review: 'The Cross Worked.' by Zach Maldonado

Author Zach Maldonado is a pastor and speaker whose passion is to proclaim the gospel and to help people believe Jesus is enough. Zach earned his Master of Arts in Theology degree from Fuller Theological Seminary.

Zach sets the tenor of his book of reassurance to Christians in this Introductory statement: ‘If the truth you’re hearing isn’t setting you free, then it’s not the truth. I wasn’t being set free by what I was hearing either. This is why I had to reexamine everything I believed. Once I got back to Scripture, I realized that the gospel is really good news, and that God really is good. Perhaps you’re living in constant fear of what God thinks about you. Maybe you don’t have confidence in what He did for you and what He thinks of you. If you’re tired of a god who only wants you to do more or be better, then this book is for you. If you’re confused about the mixed messages you’ve been hearing, then this book is for you. And if you’re burned out because you were told you have to do more for God, then this book is for you. My heart in writing this book is to look at what the Bible says about the forgiveness of our sins, and how that changes the way we see God and the final judgment. More than likely, you’ve heard that God forgives you with some strings attached. Although many will say God’s love is without condition, each Sunday, many of us hear only more conditions. We’re told we have to do more, be better, or try harder. After hearing this message, we eventually get worn out. But I’m here to tell you that the gospel is good news about a God who is good to you. And who has come to give you rest and confidence. Jesus promised us rest for our souls, not more work. In this book, we’ll discover that we can have rest because Jesus paid it all. He not only forgave us of all our sins, but He also freed us from any fear of judgment for those sins. When we look to the cross, we look at what Jesus did to freely give us rest, confidence, and relationship with God. Although many of us have heard mixed messages in the name of God, we need to realize God is not a double-talker; nor is He a God of confusion. The double-talk we hear today means we need to reexamine some of our long-held beliefs about God and our relationship
with Him. As we journey through this book, we’ll look to Scripture and see some amazing truths, such as: We’re forgiven of all our sins—past, present, and future. God will not judge us for our sins. We are just like Jesus. We can have confidence, not fear, on the day of judgment. We cannot lose our salvation. After reading this book, my hope and prayer is that you can believe the cross is enough, and realize that what Jesus did actually worked and that we’re forever forgiven and secure because of Him. As we look to Scripture, we’ll see that the truth always sets us free.’

As he expresses through the pages of his thoughtful book Zach, explains why we are totally forgiven of all sins and why we become ‘just like Jesus’ – the act of Jesus dying on the cross for the sins of the world worked! He closes with a section he titles ‘Your God Is Good’ explaining why we cannot lose the salvation we have won through the commitment to the rock of Christian belief: ‘God’s discipline is not punishment. God’s discipline is about teaching us for what lies ahead. He closes with the affirmation that ‘The cross worked for you. In every moment, you can have confidence that ‘God loves you, is within you, is for you, and will never leave you! Thank you, Jesus!’ A gentle supportive and thoughtful book for Christians in a time of a disruptive unsettled world. Grady Harp, March 18

Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.