4 of 5 stars to The Odyssey by Homer
Read this again in 2018 with the Omnibus Tenebras group. I’m doubling my previous star rating, and adding that this time I grew in admiration for Odysseus and Penelope, for a story of glory in fighting for marriage and family rather than glory in circuitous fighting as in The Iliad. Good work, Homer.
2012: 2 of 5 stars. I’m glad that I read it. Finally. However, I can’t say that (I’ve grown so much that I’m at the point where) epic Greek poetry suits me. That said, it wasn’t as bad as having Polyphemus bash my brains out on the floor, so I have much to be thankful for.
Upping my star count from 4 (in 2010) to 5 of 5 (in 2018) for The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis.
Good stuff about Aslan’s protective, and sometimes painful, providence. Also a story of two princes: one who transitioned from a slave boy to a royal leader, the other who transformed from a royal jerk into an actual ass.
Also read in 2010. Is it okay to get this excited every time Aslan shows?
This is a challenging article by David Bahnsen, Every Single Thing is Now Different: The Kavanaugh moment is not done. It is just beginning.
I’m not actually as pessimistic as Bahnsen sounds (Kavanaugh was confirmed), and also Jesus talked about when others “utter all kinds of evil against you falsely,” which, whether that applies to Kavanaugh or not, at least shouldn’t surprise Christians. Regardless, the article is good, and near the end he makes a brutal (and sadly accurate) comment about how evangelical churches, and their pastors, are providing no support for those conservative Christians endeavoring to live courageously in the culture.
“The cultural pacifists that fill today’s pulpits lack the courage to even self-identify for the humanism-soaked sponges that they are.”
5 of 5 stars to Head Covering: A Forgotten Christian Practice for Modern Times by Jeremy Gardiner
I’m preaching through 1 Corinthians 11 and saw a positive review of this book on FB. The author’s conclusion is obvious from the title of the book, and the fact that he started the Head Covering Movement is also a give-away.
Surprising to me, I really enjoyed the book. I appreciated the exegesis he presented, the tone he took, and the resources he cited. He made a very compelling case, and, if I were to change my position, it would be in his direction. I could see his point from the passage about it being right for women in every age and culture to wear a cloth covering on their heads when involved in praying and prophesying.
If you are interested, I highly recommend the book, especially to read a current, Bible-based, passionate but not the wrong sort of pushy take on why head coverings are right. You may read it and be convinced.
All that said, I still think there is a difference between the principle (which does not depend on any particular culture and obligates the conscience) and the symbol (which may take a variety of forms depending on the culture), a difference I am working to explain in my preaching. The author addresses this as a possible interpretation, but he did not convince me about the necessity of the particular symbol (cloth head covering).
Though I disagree on the bottom line, it is still a 5 of 5 stars book on the subject.
4 of 5 stars to Worldview Guide for The Iliad by Louis Markos
I attended a couple talks by Louis Markos at the 2017 ACCS National Convention and really appreciated his energy and his knowledge. When I saw that he had written Worldview Guides for Canon Press for The Iliad, The Odyssey, and The Aeneid, and since we’re reading all three of those in Omnibus Tenebras, I ordered them immediately. After reading his guide on The Iliad I’m glad I did. It wasn’t like CliffsNotes, but it was very brief with info about key characters, plot points, and a Christian perspective on the story.
4 of 5 stars to The Iliad by Homer
Read again with the Omnibus Tenebras class in 2018. I’m increasing my rating from 3 stars to 4 because, even though it is looooooong, I can appreciate its status as a classic.
2015: This is an impressive piece of work, whichever Homer wrote it.
On Rilian’s return home and how the Narnians recognized him, and Jill’s joyful perspective on their previous difficulties:
Pale though he was from long imprisonment in the Deep Lands, dressed in black, dusty, disheveled, and weary, there was something in his face and air which no one could mistake. That look is in the face of all true Kings of Narnia, who rule by the will of Aslan and sit at Cair Paravel on the throne of Peter the High King. Instantly every head was bared and every knee was bent; a moment later such cheering and shouting, such jumps and reels of joy, such hand-shakings and kissings and embracings of everybody by everybody else broke out that the tears came into Jill’s eyes. Their quest had been worth all the pains it cost.
–C.S. Lewis, The Silver Chair
We will soon see the face of our true King, and our joy will be worth all the pains it cost.
5 of 5 stars to The Silver Chair by C.S. Lewis
2018: I am really enjoying rereading the series, and this time through The Silver Chair I saw all sorts of grace, plus a narrative reminder to remember and rehearse the rules. They don’t always look the same down on the ground. Also, more about Aslan’s Country (when Caspian gets there) makes me long for our Lord’s Country even more.
2010: I absolutely loved this book. It wasn’t because of Puddleglum.
This is still my first time through Narnia and, though three books in the series remain, The Silver Chair has pushed the Wardrobe to the side. Maybe it’s because I’m more into Lewis’ flow after four adventures. Maybe I’m in a better position to appreciate fiction. Or maybe it was the story itself. No matter, I eagerly read this to the kids. Some nights I read two chapters (time permitting) because I wanted to know what happened next!
I blogged about remembering the signs, and I think I’ll write at least one more post. But I choked up every time I knew Aslan was coming. I got the chills writing that previous sentence. I am ready for Jesus to return, and have the “new” life like King Caspian. In the meantime, it would be okay if Christ knocked a hole in the wall of Experiment House and set in motion changes for the better.
2 of 5 stars to The Codes of Hammurabi and Moses
A lot of death required by these laws. I guess liberally executed capital punishment is a more likely deterrent than a complex system of fines and other punishments. Ham was trying to make a name for himself by establishing order in his empire. Contrasts to the LORD making a name for Himself by blessing His people with good fruits from obedience. Read this with the Omnibus Tenebras class (2018)
Good read if only to be more grateful for our God and His laws. (Omnibus I, 2012)
2 of 5 stars to The Epic of Gilgamesh
Weird story about a whiny demigod who wishes for immortality. Crazy that Abram probably knew this story, and even crazier the sorts of saviors that men imagine for themselves. Read this with the Omnibus Tenebras class (2018), and also with Omnibus I (2012).