David Limbaugh. The Emmaus Code: How Jesus Reveals Himself Through the Scriptures. Washington D.C: Regnery Publishing, November 9th, 2015. 256 pp.
The subject of this book is on the Messianic prophecies found in the Jewish Scriptures and how it was fulfilled by Jesus Christ. This book truly surprised me. The author is a conservative political commentator, author and the younger brother of talk radio host Rush Limbaugh. Maybe it is because I became somewhat skeptical of talk show hosts writing books on Jesus after my experience of reading Bill O’reilly’ book on “Killing Jesus” (it left a bitter taste in my mouth with how poor the theology was) but when I first picked this book up my expectation was really low. Again this book surprised me in the sense that it was really well researched and written. At first I didn’t know what to make of the book’s introduction in which David Limbaugh said he’s has been studying the Bible and its prediction of Jesus for over twenty years. I wasn’t sure if I could believe him; but after finishing the book I do. This book was really well done and of an amazing caliber considering that the author is a “layman.” He write in a way that is informative and winsome.
The author is frank in telling his readers of his struggle in the beginning trying to study the Bible and how a big factor for his difficulty is that he didn’t see the big picture of what the Bible was about. But after seeing what the big picture was about it helped him study the Scriptures. To alleviate this potential problem with the readers Limbaugh devoted the early chapters of the book surveying Old Testament history. Readers will appreciate how his writing is accessible for a popular audience. Going through these three chapters made me realize that there’s a need in the church today of teaching Old Testament survey well to the person at the pew—and Limbaugh gives us a good example.
After surveying Old Testament history the second portion of the book is titled “All Roads Leads to Christ.” Limbaugh’s title is not so much arguing or suggesting universalism but instead he focuses on how the Old Testament anticipate Christ in other ways besides direct prophecies such as types, Christophanies, Old Testament offices and biblical covenants. Here in this section of the book I enjoyed his two chapters on biblical covenants the most.
The bulk of the book is found in part three in which the author explores “Christ in every book” of the Old Testament. While being aware that there are some who artificially can find Christ behind every verse in a manner that is forced, nevertheless Limbaugh believes that the Old Testament as a whole is truly about Christ. While Limbaugh admitted that some of the books might not have direct Messianic prophecies (such as the book of Obadiah) nevertheless we see applications related to Christ. This is my favorite portion of the book since he lays it out conveniently for the readers the many Messianic prophecies and predictions from Genesis to Malachi.
I do recommend this book. Again this book was well researched both in terms of what the Bible says and also secondary sources. The author quotes scholars such as Vern Poythress, Walter Kaiser and even Larry Pettegrew, a former professor at The Master’s Seminary. While the author’s theological outlook is generally Dispensational, it is not sensational with end times. Again a helpful work one in which I pray God would use to better ground believers in the hope that we have in light of the Bible’s marvelous Messianic prophecies.