Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Hidden Flame

Abigail had lost everything--home--family, and left with little promise of a normal life. When she discovers the Messiah and joins his followers, she also discovers new meaning and purpose. Maybe she does have a future after all. But increasing persecution is scattering the burgeoning group "to the ends of the earth." And Abigail may have given her heart to the wrong man.Abigail, an orphan, has found the young brother she had thought was dead. Along the way she also has found a second family--those brave followers of the Jewish prophet Jesus. Under attack from several groups who hate them for their growing influence, these new Christians are spreading out from Jerusalem, taking their life-changing message with them. This further enrages the religious elite, and they engage whomever they can to stamp out this powerful new sect called The Way.

 This book was provided free by Bethany House Publishing in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review
Biblical fiction, when done well, makes you crave Scripture anew.   It makes you grab your Bible off the shelf and want to read the stories all over again with brand new eyes and open ears to what God wants you to hear.     Davis Bunn and Janette Oke have accomplished that again with their second book in the Acts of Faith series, Hidden Flame.     Unlike Centurion's Wife the first book in the series (and is on sale at CBD), which was set in the time period when Jesus is crucified and resurrected, Hidden Flame opens during the days of the early church  following Jesus' ascension into heaven.  

The book centers around Abigail.       The opening scenes of the book find you in the midst of a wedding ceremony (which was so beautifully describes the historical customs the day) of Alban and Leah.     The wedding is interrupted when it is found the couple is in danger and they must run for their lives.

Abigail is left behind.     Such a simple thing in today's world, but so complicated in the culture of that day.     Two suitors begin to ask for Abigail's hand in marriage.      Neither of which she feels is right for her because they are not followers of "The Way" (Christians).

Her life is intertwined with the lives of Martha and Peter.    You will not only recognize people such as Gamaliel, Ananias, Sapphira, and even Saul, but you will "see" them.  However, most important you will discover that her life has significant meaning with Stephen, the first church martyr.

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