Cruciform by Jimmy Davis
Davis, Jimmy. Cruciform: Living the Cross-Shaped Life. Adelphi: Cruciform Press, 2011. 116 pp. $9.99. Not available at Westminster yet. You can purchase or subscribe at Cruciform’s website (subscription is definitely your best bet!).
The aim of Cruciform is to cast a vision for the Cruciform Life, living as disciples of Jesus who are being shaped by the cross (gospel) into people and churches who share and show the cross (gospel) as they live the vertical life of loving God with all their head, heart, and hands and the horizontal life of loving people as Christ has loved them.
Jimmy is married to Christine, and they have three children. He is the Associate Pastor of Youth and Discipleship at Metrocrest Presbyterian Church in Carrollton, TX. He served as youth pastor in various churches for 18 years and as a church planter for 2 years before arriving in Carrollton. He also serves as the Associate Editor of the “Worldview Church E-report” published by Breakpoint.org, and is a freelance writer and member of the Christian Writers Guild. You can find out more about Jimmy Davis at his website, The Cruciform Life.
Jimmy introduces Cruciform by describing the importance of historic, medieval Cathedrals that were architecturally designed to share the gospel. From there, we leap into how we were created and redeemed to be cruciform, i.e., cross-shaped. Chapter three offers the reader the elements of what constitutes a Cruciform life while four looks at this life in action.
Chapters five through six get very practical. In these four chapters the reader learns how the cross points us to God and others in service while not really being concerned with ourselves. In chapter six we are exhorted to be shaped by the cross while in seven we are to embrace the cross and all of its implications in our lives.
Jimmy concludes with a look at how we are to take up our cross each and every day. The “further reading” section offers a compendium of quality resources. If one were to purchase the books listed here, their library would be built on an extremely solid foundation.
I confess that in the introduction I was a bit disappointed that there was not a critique of the cathedrals (that we have allowed architecture to replace preaching insofar as what draws people to the local church building). I quickly realized, however, that I was missing the point being made entirely. Jimmy Davis offers us a wonderful exhortation to live a life that is identified as “other worldly” because of Christ. As believers, we want to stand out. As followers of Christ we should stand out. These eight chapters will offer much insight into what this really looks like in today’s world.
There has been much exhortation to return to a simplified faith of sheer obedience to Christ in recent years. We are seeing the fruit of these exhortations from men like Martyn Lloyd-Jones and John Piper and Al Mohler. Now we have Jimmy Davis (no, he is probably not going to be of the stature of any of the three mentioned) to add to the list. His work, Cruciform makes for an excellent resource for new believers as well as those looking to “recharge” there walk with Christ. I recommend to all who call on the name of Christ to read Cruciform and be challenged in your daily walk.