If you are looking for a fresh, inspiring new way to study God’s word, I have a wonderful suggestion for you! “His Last Words: What Jesus Taught and Prayed in His Final Hours” was written by Kim Erickson and published by Moody Publishers early in 2017. This unique book is a 7-week Bible study of John 13-17, and takes readers through these chapters verse by verse. Because of the content and focus-verses of the book, it would make a wonderful study to delve into during the Easter season.
Each chapter or “week” of this book is divided into 5 sections, effectively forming a 5-day study week. The week opens up with a brief word from the author, and then gets right into the work of the day. Each day’s assigned reading is placed, verse by verse, into a chart with space where you can easily write down what you learned from the verse, and what the Holy Spirit revealed to you as you read it. After completing the chart, there are a couple more pages to read relating to the verses, a question or two for deeper reflection, corresponding Bible verses, and finally a closing prayer. Overall, I’m sure you see, this is an insightful and thought-provoking method to studying specific chapters of the Bible in greater depth, and the space to record your own words invites deeper reflection about each and every verse.
Although I greatly enjoyed and respected this study, there were a couple aspects that were not as wonderful as I had hoped. First off, the writing style is not very warm or friendly. It is professional, without question, but it doesn’t feel as though Kim is a friend who is sitting across the table with a cup of tea. She remains distant, but I can’t really explain why… Second, while the blank spaces to record your own thoughts are one of the main features of this book, this may not be a huge selling feature for readers who don’t enjoy writing in their books! You see, I am one of those people who will only write on plain, blank or lined paper, or in a journal (and not a beautifully bound one, either!). I know, I’m weird… But, for me, the abundance of blank space in this book felt a bit wasteful – after all, you get this book expecting it to be chock-full of insight into the topic, and instead find it to be more of a guided journaling experience. After getting over my disappointment, however, I found this format to be quite valuable for exercising my thinking, analyzing, and applying skills for the specific Bible verses, even though I used my own paper to record my thoughts!
Overall, I was very happy with the thought-provoking material contained within “His Last Words“. I gained insight that proved most valuable, and I look forward to not only re-reading this volume, but also continuing with other books in this series of Bible studies for women that Moody Publishers is currently releasing.
I received this book courtesy of Moody Publishers in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are my own.