3 out of 4 stars
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This is a book written by Steven C. Johnson to question what Christians generally don’t question and to explore aspects of Bible teachings that the clergy rarely touch. Bible Discoveries & Revelation is published by Xlibris, US. The author describes himself as a man who has flaws, has learnt to air his opinions when under conviction and has had a hard time finding a church that keeps him fed spiritually.
“Just because a person knows and reads the Bible and can quote it chapter and verse does not mean his or her interpretations of certain verses or topics are correct: - this view applies to me as well.” -The author, Millennium. The book is split into about two hundred and ninety small chapters, each exploring a topic of interest. For instance, Tithing According to the Bible is a study of where the idea of tithing came from and why it should be done willingly and not out of fear or false expectations of reward (causing one to have a sense of entitlement). Offerings should go hand in hand with tithing. He also points out that it is important to tithe where one is genuinely fed spiritually.
He further discusses many other topics and also clusters those which are closely related adjacent to each other, like the debates on tribulation, End Time Timeline and the Millennium. These three discuss events that are closely related but difficult to explore for most Christians because they involve prophesy and happen in the future. Johnson gives his opinion and makes strong points drawing from scripture verses he draws from the old and new testaments.
The book seems to be from the author’s heart. He has seen gaps in many arguments about Bible doctrine and goes out of his way to debunk some of the truths Christians have held over the years. This creates room for anyone who reads his book to learn to question more. For instance, the idea of the Trinity is not a thing that Christians should dwell too much time discussing or debating about since there isn’t any reference to it in the original translations of the Bible. Apparently, there is no scripture that supports the widespread belief that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost are one. For instance, he strongly argues that the Son couldn’t sit on the right side of Himself if He is also the Father.
However, I don’t agree with all the opinions that the author holds, one of them being the idea that masturbation is a gift to help keep one’s body under control. He holds this view because the habit is not condemned in the Bible. However, I am not sure whether it is wrong for couples married to each other spending time apart. For singles, it would be next to impossible for the habit not to be a result of sexual thought/fantasy, which is considered sinful according to scripture. When a habit causes in an individual to live in guilt and it takes deliverance/divine intervention to beat it, then it may not be entirely wise to see it as an ok thing to do. There are YouTube videos that exist to support this viewpoint. There may be many sinful things in the world that are not mentioned in the bible.
I liked the fact that the author went out of his way to research each controversial idea to come up with thought-provoking conclusions on the topics he tackled in this book. He also mentions he is guided by the Holy Spirit. I would highly recommend this book to Pastors, Bible scholars, Christian study groups, etc.
The e-pub book contains quite a number of spelling errors. I have noticed at times it is caused by the app one uses to read. The author used strong language in one instance, (bull sh***) which many a staunch believer may not find amusing and see it as a red flag. Never the less it is a valuable study tool and I have learnt a lot reading this book. I rate the book 3 out of 4 stars.
Bible Discoveries & Revelations
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