Review by Cotwani -- The Biblical Clock

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Cotwani
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Review by Cotwani -- The Biblical Clock

Post by Cotwani » 07 Feb 2019, 03:35

[Following is a volunteer review of "The Biblical Clock" by Daniel Friedmann and Dania Sheldon.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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When it comes to the origin of our universe, are you a creation proponent, an evolution proponent, or do you care less? Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to proclaim an end to this ‘origin’ divide. According to Daniel Friedmann and Dania Sheldon in The Biblical Clock, the Bible doesn’t tell us that everything happened supernaturally. God used the laws of nature (evolution) to do almost everything. He made something from something. The big-bang theory and its consequences can actually be viewed as the getting something from something. The two authors go further to give input on the initial making of something from nothing, which must have provided the stock from which the different something emerged.

Daniel Friedmann, an author, and student of religion embarked on the book in order to show how scientific facts and the Bible complement each other in describing the development of our universe. The author also combines the Bible and historical accounts in trying to give a glimpse into how the future will unfold for our species. Through extensive research and scriptures, he reformulates and explains the timelines for Creation and that of the End of Days (Messianic Era). This calculation makes up the Biblical Clock formula.

The description of this book appealed to me, so I chose to review it. However, as I read its introduction, I couldn’t help the sinking feeling that I had made a mistake in judging the book by its description! I braced myself for abstract scientific arguments and boring, textbook historical facts. Fortunately, I was spared this by the authors’ unique presentation style, which took the approach of Friedmann explaining relevant past occurrences and future trajectories to his nephew Seb, in an engaging, conversational manner. This resulted in the book taking the readers through an incredible medley of the lives and works of renowned mystics, prophets, sages, philosophers, scientists, and biblical commentators, from 800 years ago to the present day. The narration used the key thinkers own life experiences. I especially enjoyed Isaac Newton’s sunset year’s journey.

The Biblical Clock is divided into three parts: Part one deals with analyzing creation/evolution events and their timelines as described in both Genesis and the latest scientific literature. Part two extrapolates the new understanding from part one to examine the concept of the End of Days. The authors present a possible scenario on how and around when this will come to pass. Part three deals with - surprise, surprise – the authors’ perspective and interpretation of the beginning or the story of creation in the book of Genesis! I found this ironic because usually, we are urged to start explaining anything complicated from the beginning! From known to unknown, so to speak. Nevertheless, the authors present their arguments in a logical, flowing manner. This proves that, if the beginning appears controversial, one can very well start his/her defense in the middle, so long as it will be tied well with the beginning!

Dania Sheldon is a professional writer, editor, and researcher with a doctorate in English language and literature from the University of Oxford. She superbly combines an engaging writing style with impeccable grammar. This brings a spark of life to a narration that would have otherwise been dull. I was captivated by her mastery of sentence construction. Her sentences were generally long, but never awkward or run-on. Her comma usage, instead of reducing readability in such instances, greatly improved clarity. Take a look at the sentence below, where a character is reminiscing about his family:
Time had, mercifully or otherwise, slightly lessened the sharpness, but he kept this testament to his grief as a reminder— not of them (as if he would need such reminding!) or of his pain, which he inhabited like a second skin, but of his faith, which said he would be reunited with them eventually, albeit not in this life. (Kindle Locations 1480-1483).
Despite the book’s glowing tribute so far, I found one major setback, which falls in the ‘personal belief’ area. Despite the title, the book is Judaism-based and very silent on Christianity. Because the perspective on the Messiah is different in the two faiths, I found the book's discussions on the same amiss. The dispensation of grace was also another glaring difference. I thus thought the book’s title misleading.

All the same, the book was informative and gave me many bones to chew on. I, therefore, rate it 4 out of 4 stars and don’t hesitate to recommend it to everyone wishing to read more on the middle ground between evolution and creation, presented in an interesting, non-academic manner.

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The Biblical Clock
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Post by Anthony__ » 09 Feb 2019, 01:36

This is a very detailed review, Cotwani. The book is very informative and also boring at some point. Notwithstanding, at some point it kept me thinking...

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Post by Cotwani » 09 Feb 2019, 07:13

Anthony__ wrote:
09 Feb 2019, 01:36
This is a very detailed review, Cotwani. The book is very informative and also boring at some point. Notwithstanding, at some point it kept me thinking...
Yeah, though one may not agree totally with all the author says, the book still provides a lot to chew on. Thanks for stopping by Antony!
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Post by Helen_Combe » 09 Feb 2019, 13:44

That sounds like a very interesting premise. Yes, there is no reason why God shouldn’t have a process lik evolution which he can just kick off and leave to get on with it without needing to supervise each and every birth of amoeba or germinating seed.
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Post by Cotwani » 09 Feb 2019, 15:57

Helen_Combe wrote:
09 Feb 2019, 13:44
That sounds like a very interesting premise. Yes, there is no reason why God shouldn’t have a process lik evolution which he can just kick off and leave to get on with it without needing to supervise each and every birth of amoeba or germinating seed.
Lol! What an apt way to put it! Indeed from book, God only 'created' on only 3 occasions. Great review!
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Post by Sahani Nimandra » 10 Feb 2019, 01:38

Wow! Thank you for all your information. Very informative. Very resourceful. I'm not much into this type of genre, but it will do for a change. Thank you for this different view of yours.
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Post by NuelUkah » 10 Feb 2019, 20:53

This is a very detailed and well constructed review. Though the book sounds loaded with knowledge, I do not recommend to all. Such could confuse the weak. Creation is real, evolution is real, but the theories of scientists on the subject matter of creation and evolution tend to be misleading. We all should realize that science is only the tip of God's finger. Hence, we can't explain God and His work with logical reasoning. Good thing the book was reviewed by a knowledgeable person.
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Post by Zimall » 11 Feb 2019, 02:24

I wanted know how long is this book? The author hasn't specified the page count.
Thanks a lot for the informative review Cotwani☺
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Post by ma_mon28 » 11 Feb 2019, 22:25

I really wanted to read this book. I wondered, too. Biblical clock sounds a timeline of the world.

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Post by Espie » 11 Feb 2019, 23:25

This is quite an interesting piece, which reminds me of a long line of famous lay and clergy Catholic scientists who didn't have to renounce their faiths just to lay foundations of thought that greatly influenced our current modern thinking and way of life. I'm at a point where I'd rather focus on harmony rather than the differences, though. Thank you for another thorough, thought-provoking, and well-written review.
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Post by BelleReadsNietzsche » 11 Feb 2019, 23:46

I love the engaging tone you use in this nevertheless specific, detailed review. I love that you broke down a quote from the book to praise the prose!

I think it’s highly relevant to potential readers how Judaism-centric this text seems to be, so thanks for noting that also.
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Post by Susmita Biswas » 12 Feb 2019, 00:02

Great review. Explained every aspect. Helped me to decide about reading this book.

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Post by briellejee » 12 Feb 2019, 06:50

I did not choose to review the book because I had the same assumption as yours when I saw the cover and title! Though I am Christian by faith, my scientific upbringing and background clashes with evolution. Every time someone asks me about this, I just usually shrug and try to avoid because I can't explain well both sides. Finally, this book comes into view! Thanks to your very detailed and honest review, I will read it. It was surprising that it was of Jewish faith, I thought it was Christianity, as most books with this topic are. :tiphat:
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Post by sarahmarlowe » 12 Feb 2019, 18:08

Wow! This sounds like a very interesting read that brings up a lot to think about. Thanks for such a thorough review!
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Post by soccerts » 12 Feb 2019, 19:49

Zimall wrote:
11 Feb 2019, 02:24
I wanted know how long is this book? The author hasn't specified the page count.
Thanks a lot for the informative review Cotwani☺
It's 12 chapters and a relatively short read, although it does say that it's not intended to be read in one sitting. I read it on a mobile device, but I think it works out to ~282 pages including the glossary, appendices, and sources at the end.

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