Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Two Books: Miracles and Rumors of an Another World

I recently reread the two books featured here. Both are informative and inspiring. Great for summer reading. Enjoy!

Miracles: What They Are, Why They Happen and How They Can Change Your Life

By Eric Metaxas

This is an outstanding book with a wealth of information about miracles and many beautiful miraculous stories. The book is divided into two sections: Part 1 The Question of Miracles and Part 2 The Miracle Stories.

Metaxas offers definitions of the word “miracle.” Webster defines it as “an extraordinary event manifesting divine intervention in human affairs.” Skeptic David Hume didn’t believe in miracles but defined them as “a transgression of the law of nature by a particular volition of the Deity, or by the interposition of some invisible agent.” Metaxas adds his definition: “When something outside time and space enters time and space, whether just to wink at us or poke at us briefly, or to come in and dwell among us for three decades.” Metaxas describes the incredible miracle of our world which could not exist without many exact parameters. The chapters on The Miracle of the Universe and on The Resurrection are outstanding.

Part 2 is titled The Miracle Stories. Metaxas offers chapters on Conversion Miracles, Healing Miracles, Inner Healing Miracles, Angelic Miracles and more. The stories he tells are all of people he knows. He limited the stories in this way so he could be certain about their veracity. These stories are all amazing and miraculous though skeptics might call some coincidental. The idea that conversions are miracles surprised and delighted me. I had not thought of it that way even though I know the Holy Spirit indwells all believers. I will reread this book – it’s that good.

Rumors of Another World: What on Earth are We Missing?

By Philip Yancey

This is a book for believers and non believers who wonder about the meaning of life. Yancey details his own struggles and questions and muses about them. He says “I wrote this book for those who live in the borderlands of belief.” Many Christians are at the borders - full of doubts. He notes his own doubts and wonders if the visible world is all there is. He wonders what are we missing. What is a human being? Why are we here?

The thesis of Rumors is that we live in two worlds: the every day world that we can touch and see and an unseen spiritual world. Yancey proceeds to show us hints of the unseen world.

He says, “If there is no Creator, what then? I would have to view the world with all its suffering as well as its beauty as a random product of a meaningless universe, the briefest flare of a match in cosmic darkness.” pg. 50

And again, “Biology is destiny declares the one who looks down….Eternity is destiny declares the one who looks up. Our genes may indeed contain predispositions toward bestial instincts, but we hear a call to rise above them.” pg 58

Chapters of note are Designer Sex, The Good Life (in which he details his respectable sins), The Gift of Guilt, and Chapter 12 about the Elephant Man. This is book is full of stories, examples and thought provoking information. I have read it twice and will read it again.

I think Yancy’s uncertain faith is due to his looking down more than he looks up; looking at this world and it’s woes and cynicism more than joining with Christians in worship and experiencing the joy of the Lord in Scripture.

I know that the rumors of an unseen world are true! I’ll read it again so I can better articulate the evidence to loved ones who don’t believe.

Blessings, Dottie

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