Archive for July, 2010

He Who Wept

Posted in Book Review on July 13, 2010 by seguewm

I hate to even admit this, but I purchased this book in Hawaii in 1990 and have intended to read it ever since. Having just finished a Chronological reading of the book of Jeremiah, I again thought of this novel by Thom Lemmons. It was sitting, beckoning, on my shelf, as it has for years.

The cast of characters in the beginning of the book was extremely useful, as the names can begin to sound alike and the relationships a bit foggy after a while. This, plus a map of the area, were welcomed additions to the novel.

There are only two things I found disagreeable about this book. First, the lack of references for the quoted texts. This could hae been included in an appendix or even at the bottom of the pages.  Second, a explanatory segue between scenes would have given the story a smoother, easier progression. There were some jumps in the story that caught me off guard.

Lemmons is a gifted writer and story teller. I have a much better appreciation for Jeremiah after reading this book. I not only recommend it, but am now looking forward to reading his other books. I’ve learned my lesson and will not likely leave them unread, on the bookshelf, for a decade or two.

Beyond Opinion – Living the Faith We Defend

Posted in Book Review on July 7, 2010 by seguewm

It is with a certain degree of irony that the author of this book chose the particular title that he did. I say that because my first impression (opinion) was that assumptions were often built upon without first being established beyond opinion. To be honest, I was disappointed as I read this book. I’ve been blessed by Ravi Zacharias over the years.

I suppose, if the reader of this book dwells among the already convinced, there will be a flood of amens.  What would have been a more accurate title? How to Create a Straw Man Argument and then Shoot it Down. If this was a first draft, no problem. If the usefulness of apologetics is in its clever ability to demonstrate why opposing beliefs are not absolutes, then this book is a winner. Yet the authors present nothing to bolster their own beliefs and, in effect unwittingly leave Christian apologetics a light-weight reputation.

OK, OK, I’m doing much of the same thing in this review. On the other hand, this is supposed to be my opinion of the book. Ravi’s book was not. This is not to say that there wasn’t anything of value in this text.  I enjoyed the writing style, the topics, and the cursory coverage of the many issues that confront Christian faith today. I just expected more.

Who would I recommend this book to? This is a great book for those who are true believers. It will confirm them in their current evangelical worldview.  It will introduce, or at least remind, them of the great diversity of issues that make up our reality. If, though, you are looking for something scholarly and courageous, this book won’t be for you.