The Jesus Creed, by Scot McKnight. The 2004 book was the 2005 recipient of Christianity Today's Book Award, and deservedly so.
McKnight, the Karl A. Olsson Professor in Religious Studies at North Park College (Chicago), thoroughly and captivatingly presents the Jesus Creed (the Shema of Deuteronomy 6 plus Jesus' added priority of loving your neighbor as yourself) as the heart of what it means to follow Jesus and experience his kingdom. He divides the book into five sections:
1. The Jesus Creed ("a spiritually formed person loves God by following Jesus and loves others")
2. Stories of the Jesus Creed ("a spiritually formed person embraces the stories of others who love Jesus")
3. The Society of the Jesus Creed ("a spiritually formed person lives out kingdom values")
4. Living the Jesus Creed ("a spiritually formed person loves Jesus")
5. Jesus and the Jesus Creed ("a spiritually formed person participates in the life of Jesus")
I loved the book as a whole, but especially found the first few chapters compelling (due, I am sure, to my high degree of interest in the Jewish roots and background of Jesus' life and teaching, which figure repeatedly in the early chapters). I loved his wide choice of sources. I loved his sense of humor and his knack for story-telling. I agree with John Ortberg, who wrote in the foreword, "The Jesus Creed is both an invitation and a resource to put your spirit into [God's] hands, to dine at the Master's table." I found it so.