SALVATION ACCOMPLISHED BY THE SON: THE WORK OF CHRIST, by Robert Peterson

Published on May 31, 2016 by Joshua Centanni

Crossway, 2011 | 624 pages

I don’t know of another book like this. With his Salvation Accomplished by the Son Robert Peterson (Professor of Systematic Theology at Covenant Theological Seminary who seems to do nothing other than produce books!) gives us his magnum opus in which he sketches out Christ’s accomplishment of salvation in terms of nine “Saving Events”:

  • Incarnation
  • Sinless Life
  • Death
  • Resurrection
  • Ascension
  • Session
  • Pentecost
  • Intercession
  • Second Coming

Of course Peterson recognizes the central importance of Christ’s Death and Resurrection, but he recognizes that these attending “Saving Events” are essential to our salvation also. Christ’s Incarnation and Sinless Life are prerequisites to Christ’s Death and Resurrection, and the others (Ascension, Session, Pentecost, Intercession, Second Coming) are events / works that stem from his Death and Resurrection.

To this Peterson adds six “Pictures” of Christ’s work:

  • Christ as Reconciler
  • Christ as Redeemer
  • Christ our Legal Substitute
  • Christ our Victor
  • Christ our Second Adam
  • Christ our Sacrifice

Again, there are other “pictures” the Peterson could – and some may argue should – have included, but in the course of his biblical surveys and expositions he covers the vital ground necessary to provide an accurate sketch of the salvation accomplished by our Lord. For each of these “Events” and “Pictures” Peterson surveys the major relevant biblical passages, drawing pertinent observations from each, and then at the conclusion of each chapter collates the material for a systematic-theological presentation.

The value of the book lies in the scope of its grasp, and as such it provides an excellent survey of the saving work of Christ. The major passages are noted and helpfully summarized with regard to their respective contributions to the given themes. Given the breadth of the book Peterson does not treat these passages in depth, and indeed many will wish he had established this or that connection more explicitly or even complain that some important connections were completely overlooked. No book can say everything, but as an introduction and survey to the saving work of Christ that guides the reader through the major biblical passages and primary lines of theological argument, Salvation Accomplished by the Son does what few other books have attempted to do. Pastors will find it to be a helpful reference work as they prepare to address the many biblical passages and biblical Christological and soteriological categories treated here.

Fred Zaspel

Buy the books

Salvation Accomplished by the Son

Crossway, 2011 | 624 pages