Book Review: Excellence by Andreas Kostenberger

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When I was in seminary at Southeastern, there were three things I knew about Dr. Kostenberger: accent (he’s from Austria), Marni (his wife), and brilliant (he just is)!  So, when I saw this book come across the Crossway publishing desk, I picked it up solely based on a blog review I read of it.  I wanted to apply this topic of excellence to every aspect of my life. 

This book greatly surprised me.  Not many books do that.  I either expect them to be great and they are, or I expect them to be dull and boring (so, I don’t pick them up).  This book surprised me on its applicability and its readability. 

The first part of the introduction is worth price of the book.  Dr. Kostenberger gives his life’s story of how he came to faith and where he is now.  But, don’t stop there.  The rest of the introduction proves helpful if you just want to pick up the book and read a chapter or two. He gives a brief synopsis on each chapter. 

Dr. K doesn’t start with excellence because he is brilliant.  He starts with excellence because that is how God does all things.  He communicates the centrality of God’s excellence in all He does and expresses to us the need for us to do that also, to rightly bear the image of God.  Of course, we can only do this by grace and through the Holy Spirit living in us. 

This book is mostly geared toward seminary students and other educators, but I think its lessons can be applied to everyone.  Whether you are a homemaker, a writer, a banker, or nanny…whatever your job or call in life – do it with excellence.  Pick this book up, at least the first half (but I challenge you to read the entire book) and read a chapter at a time (they are short, most around 10-12 pages).  And ask the Spirit to help you apply what Kostenberger wrote.