December 2, 2020

Review: Promises Kept by Mark Dever

The Message of the New Testament: Promises KeptMark Dever is pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, D.C., a member of the Founder’s Ministries inner circle, an accomplished Puritan scholar, director and resident scholar at 9 Marks Ministries, seminary professor, author and one of my very favorite preachers to listen to anytime. Dever’s new book The Message of the New Testament: Promises Kept, is a must acquire for many IM readers.

Dever has written a unique “preacher’s introduction to the New Testament.” This isn’t scholarly, critical material; it is 27 extended and expanded “overview” sermons. Each sermon introduces a single New Testament book. (I know Dever’s material well enough to know that many of these chapters were two or three sermons, but the sermon-style is intact.) The goal is to give the interested layperson a solid, theologically driven, textually serious, thematically expounded introduction to the New Testament books. He succeeds marvelously.

Each chapter has Dever’s trademark introductory sections. I think Mark Dever does the best sermon introductions of anyone preaching today. I unashamedly copy his method and these chapters are marvelous guides for how to construct an introduction that is contemporary, timely and interesting. Each chapter has an outline at the beginning, and application questions at the conclusion.

The book is not a “Dummies” book at all, but it is also less than a seminary introduction. It is uniquely pitched right at an educated laity or beginning preacher/student.

I am teaching Colossians to my men’s Bible study, and Dever’s chapter is both an exemplary source of Bible study ideas and a fine introduction to a way of preaching through Colossians.

An Old Testament volume is on the way, but this volume is a complete delight by itself. I highly recommend “Promises Kept.”


  1. Between your quick review, the editor’s and the customer review by “Brian” at Amazon, this book appears to be quite a solid purchase. At 560 pages, it’s not a short read but seems well priced too.

    Will be looking into getting a copy here in Oz.

  2. Thank you for the recomendation on this book. I have heard Dr. Dever give a 50 minute overview of the book of Exodus and it was excellent. I trust these N.T. overviews will be equally profitable.