Mount of OlivesJerusalem

Garden of Gethsemane ~Jerusalem – Click on photo for larger view

Just in time for Lent and Easter!  Passion. No, I am not talking about the movie (The Passion of The Christ), you know the one Mel Gibson directed. I am talking about what Jesus Christ did for us, and I am talking about a new book, Passion: How Christ’s Final Day Changes Your Life that digs deep into the Scriptures of Luke (22:39 – 24:12) during that latter part of Holy Week. Author and Pastor Mike McKinley has a new release from The Good Book Company with more than just your average book about a Gospel.

McKinley wrote this book based on a sermon series he preached at his church,Guilford Baptist Church in Sterling, VA. Each of the ten chapters begins with Scripture reading from Luke. What follows next are the teaching points and application of the Scripture, not only for the people of the Bible, but also for the reader. McKinley ends each chapter with several questions to ponder and dig deeper through prayer, discussion or journaling. Each chapter closes with lyrics from a hymn that capture the message and tone of the chapter.  This book walks through each of the steps of Christ from the Garden of Gethsemane to Resurrection with specific detail of the events. However, McKinley doesn’t want the reader to just know more about the history of Luke, he wants them to be richly blessed in the process and walk away with a deeper experience of the Gospel message. McKinley states in his introduction:

…this book is about the present. It’s about today, and how Christ’s final day transforms our everyday.

At the end of Passion, McKinley includes reading plans for the Bible that can be 8 days surrounding Holy week or 50 days to prepare during the season of Lent.

Cross at Sunset Jerusalem-

Cross at Sunset Jerusalem – click on photo for larger view

Bottom Line

McKinley delivers. This is an excellent book. Not fluff, but a deep walk through the Scriptures that will take you to the very heart of the Gospel message.  During this Lenten season, I wanted to read a devotional or book that prepared me for Easter.  I was  hoping that this would fit the bill.  I found myself reading this book and being so thankful for it Scripture, discussion, and probing questions. After reading a chapter, I was often familiar with the hymn, but I found myself reading through the lyrics with a new understanding of their meaning.

I believe McKinley’s personal writing style and thoughtful guidance through his teaching will strengthened the faith of his readers. New believers, mature Christians, and those seeking some answers about Christ will be greatly enriched.  I believe it is a book I will come back to read again, particularly during Lent and Easter. I definitely give this book five stars out of five stars.

Passion BookBook Description

Some people see Jesus’ death as a historical footnote, buried in the past. Christians understand it is much more than that, and know it has transformed their future.

But often we don’t realise how much Jesus’ last day should change our present, too.

Walking readers through Luke’s Gospel, US pastor and well-known author Mike McKinley looks at the events of the last day of Jesus’ earthly life. At each point, he pauses to marvel at the love Christ has for His people; and shows how Jesus’ people can learn from His passion, His care, and His integrity. This unique book is perfect for both new and mature Christians. While great for reading at any time in the year, it’s particularly helpful to read during Lent or Holy Week.

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: The Good Book Company (January 22, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1908762586
  • ISBN-13: 978-1908762580
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Retail Price: $12.99


Whether you’re just getting to know Jesus or have known already him for years, you will be challenged, encouraged, and emboldened by Passion. This excellent study from Mike McKinley will help you personally understand why Christ’s final day is the hinge of history. —Collin Hansen, Editorial Director of The Gospel Coalition and author of Young, Restless, Reformed: A Journalist’s Journey with the New Calvinists

I hope that many will read and absorb this book. It offers a sweet series of meditations on Jesus Christ s life-changing and universe-altering final day. It is an excellent read for both seeker and Christian. —Jonathan Leeman, Editorial Director of 9Marks Ministries; author of Reverberation and The Surprising Offense of God’ s Love.

AuthorMike McKinley

Mike McKinley is the senior pastor of Guilford Baptist Church in Sterling, VA. He holds a M.Div from Westminster Theological Seminary and is the author of several books, including Am I Really a Christian? andChurch Planting is for Wimps Mike and his wife Karen live in Virginia with their five children. Mike Blogs for Church Matters, the 9 Marks blog.


Note: We were provided with a complimentary copy of the book through Shaun Tabatt at Cross-Focused Reviews for an honest review of this title.

Photos taken by Mike Tiede on our trip to Israel 2-2012.