Book Review: “The Cross He Bore” by Frederick S. Leahy

Title: “The Cross He Bore”
Author: Frederick S. Leahy
Publisher: The Banner of Truth Trust
ISBN: 978-0-85151-693-6
Pages: 112
Release Date: December 1, 1996
Rating: 5/5 (highly recommended)
Purchase: WTSBooks, Amazon.com

The subtitle for this book is “Meditations on the Sufferings of the Redeemer.” Accordingly, Leahy focuses on Christ from His time in Gethsemane to His crucifixion. It is aptly titled, since the text is a collection of meditations on Christ’s sufferings, which He bore for us. The exposition is intended for devotion, to evoke thought and emotion in the reader to draw them to worship Christ. There are thirteen short chapters that focus on unique aspects of Christ’s experiences during Passion Week. Each of them is powerful, as they reflect not only on how Christ suffered, but that He suffered for us.

I read this book last quarter, from October to November, because I realized that I was lacking in my love and passion for Christ. The Holy Spirit showed me that I was doing things out of love, yes, but mixed in there was a sense of obligation. A present sentiment was, “I’m doing this because that’s just what Christians do.” I had begun to lose the sense of why I did things like read Scripture and pray. I saw this book on my shelf in the hopes that it would help increase my love for the Savior. I was not disappointed. Leahy does such an incredible job of not letting his exposition be too lofty or cerebral. His prose is poetic, and it draws emotion, as poems and art are want to do. Everything is rightly grounded in wonder and worship for the Lamb who was slain for our sins.

To read this book is to sit at the foot of the cross. It is to reflect deeply and gratefully on the blessings of the gospel. This book is “Living the Cross Centered Life” before that book was written. It is a great companion to “Living the Cross Centered Life” by C.J. Mahaney because of the way both books are fixated on, captivated by the cross. This book is not as easy a read as Mahaney’s because of the poeticism, but it is well worth the effort. It is deeply moving. It is also short and inexpensive. I can see no reason not to have it in your library. I highly recommend it to you.

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