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Is this a classic?

I well remember reading Dr. Packer's book as a young student in the 1970s and being so overwhelmed by its depth, richness, clarity and biblical profundity that I began to wonder whether I was a Christian at all! It would have been a delight to have said the same of Professor McGrath's book which sadly lacks all the superlative qualities of Knowing God. Which is really a great pity. For here is an author of tremendous ability and a sincere desire to ensure that Christianity does not remain at the level of the head alone, but also that it engages the heart and will. However, the path that he has chosen fails to achieve in the 21st century what Dr. Packer managed at the end of the 20th century.

Melvin Tinker

By Alister McGrath
Hodder & Stoughton. 216 pages. £6.99
ISBN 0 340 75678 0

How does one go about writing a review of a book which on the back cover is hailed as 'A modern classic by one of the most respected theologians of our time'? The title itself, Knowing Christ, inevitably invites a comparison with another book which on its front cover is described by John Stott as 'A spiritual classic of the 20th century', Dr. J. I. Packer's Knowing God.