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Making Sense of the Cross

4.0 of 5 stars 4.00  ·  rating details  ·  49 ratings  ·  14 reviews
The heart of the cross is an element of mystery that can’t be resolved either easily or entirely.

The 3rd book in the Making Sense Series, Making Sense of the Cross, gives you the opportunity to ‘listen in’ on a conversation with two people having an open and candid conversation and discussion about the cross. One of the voices knows a little more and assumes the role of te
Published 2012 by Augsburg Fortress (first published January 1st 2011)
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Stacey Littlefield
This is not an "academic" book, but that's a good thing. It is set upon a foundation of academics, and the author does a great job of making those things accessible to all readers. Structured as a conversation between two people about the meaning of the cross, I found it a very readable and helpful approach to understanding atonement and the work of Christ on the cross and risen from the tomb. My only criticism, honestly, is that I wanted to get to the "cross" conversation sooner than the author ...more
David Lose is a master communicator, both in speaking and writing, and a clear expositor of many facets of the Christian faith. In this book he looks at the question "why did Jesus have to die?" Following a dialogue format between two individuals that all his "Making Sense of . . ." books use, he looks at the standard theories meant to answer this question, from the ransom theory that God, through his son, is paying off the Devil and freeing humans from captivity to sin and death, to the theory ...more
James Swenson
Many people at my church are studying Making Sense of the Cross this Lent: it's the focus of our adult-education hour on Sunday mornings. I found it worthwhile: clear and thoughtful, and occasionally even moving.

I will say right away that the book is written in a question-and-answer format that put me off. What do these two nameless characters, both representing the author, find to say to each other?
`Brilliant. Really, I'll have to remember that one.' (p. 20)

`I think so, too.' (p.
A great, quick intro to different theories of atonement! Great for seminary students and beginners alike, the whole book is written in the style of a conversation between two people. I read the whole thing in three days during my train commute, and it really helped organize my thoughts on the topic. A must-read for anyone wondering how Christians through the centuries have made sense of a crucified God.
While this book is written in a way so that it could just be read individually, I think it is experienced in a much richer way when used as part of a Bible study or discussion group (which is what we're doing). I think it has raised more questions than it answers, but I don't think that's a bad thing. And our discussions have been fruitful.
Just finished reading the first two chapters and re-reading the first chapter... VERY THICK with talk about God (DUH) and what God is up to in the world, specifically through the cross. The conversational approach to this book is a style reminiscent of "The Screw-tape Letters" wherein the reader is an outside observer to correspondence that is happening. Rather than just reading the "thoughts" of the author we are participants in or at least eavesdroppers upon a "theological" conversation that i ...more
So worth it when you get to chapter 6! Wonderful and conversational, working through biblical materials, atonement theories and theologies to finally come to something true, serious and life-giving about the atonement.

Yes. Yes. I finally finished this book. I think it was the way this was written that made me take so long. It's written as a dialog and I would just want the author to get to the point rather than draw it out in imaginary conversation. BUT, this is a great primer on the meaning of the cross. Four theories about why Jesus had to die on the cross for our salvation. Any one who has ever struggled with this central part of the Christian story should read this.
Excellent overview for a lay learner of the primary atonement theories throughout the life of the church, some of their main proponents, and the implications of each. The conversation format involves the reader in assessing for herself or himself. The course, including the DVD and leader's guide, is very well done.
Pastor David Lose always provides me with thoughtful insights. Just finished reading Making Sense of the Cross, and highly recommend it it to all who struggle with why Jesus dies.
Really disliked the "conversation" format of the book, the comparison of theories was somewhat interesting.
I marked it as "read" but did not get through it. The big snooze. Short on inspiration.

Engaging and accessible discussion of an incredibly complex topic.
A book I've been waiting for; excellent.
Maggie Patchett
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