Book Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 153:610 (Apr 1996)
Article: Book Reviews
Author: Anonymous

Book Reviews

Teaching as Jesus Taught. By Roy B. Zuck. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1995. 361 pp. Paper, $19.99.

Zuck needs no introduction to the readers of Bibliotheca Sacra. His books sprout like Texas bluebonnets in April (he has written or edited 31 books, with several more “in the works”). This volume complements his already-popular Teaching with Spiritual Power (reprint, Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1993), formerly The Holy Spirit in Your Teaching, first published in 1963).

In a sense this book confronts the reader with both good news and bad news. The “good news” comes as an amazing compilation of material relating to Jesus as a teacher. The chapters range from qualities that marked Jesus as a master teacher to His teaching goals in addition to knowing truth. Jesus’ techniques of rhetorical speech and storytelling appear along with His ability to interest students in learning—and much more.

The “bad news” comes at the end of each chapter, where Zuck challenges readers to think through ways to emulate Jesus as teacher. If thoughtfully answered, no teacher will have an excuse for boring students; this book creates a huge responsibility for teachers.

Warren W. Wiersbe’s endorsement on the back cover labels the book “an encyclopedic handbook.” He is correct. Thirty tables enable the reader to examine various features of Jesus’ teaching techniques and ministry, and these alone justify the price of the book. Some examples are these: Table 5, Four Greek Words Used of Jesus as a Teacher (pp. 34-35); Table 22, Jesus’ Use of Illustrations from Nature as Recorded in Matthew (pp. 168-69); Table 26, Questions Jesus Asked (pp. 258-76—a 19-page chart!); and Table 27, “Questions Addressed to Jesus and His Responses” (pp. 291-304).

Good books along with good teachers often provoke as many questions as they answer. Teaching as Jesus Taught fits this standard well. On page 11 alone Zuck offers 21 questions that can guide teachers toward a lifetime of improvement. For example he asks, What results should we work toward and pray for? How did He [Jesus] capture and hold His students’ attention? How did He relate His teaching to individuals’ needs? These and other questions goad the serious reader like a cattle prod. The questions throughout the book, including all the chapter titles (all of which are worded as questions) can be used fruitfully in teacher training and faculty development discussions.

Those who know and love Zuck will enjoy the footnote on page 285. Only the editor of Bibliotheca Sacra would reach back to an 1884 article in this journal to find an appro...

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