Sometimes you put off a book review because you are nervous that you will not do it justice.
That’s what I felt considering my friend Julie Davis’ new book Thus Sayeth the Lord: A Fresh Take on the Prophets
What she achieves here is to provide a useful summary going through the life of the prophets.
There is a whimsical aspect to this book that both pulls you in and surprises you. From the typefaces used to the folksy way that Julie naturally communicates you might think that these are just quick summarizations. Easy to digest, but not really serious scholarship and insight. The easy to digest part is correct until you get hit upside-the-head with a flash of insight and you wonder “Why didn’t I notice this before?” Then you start to notice the serious study invested to be able to pass on the work of scriptural scholars.
In books created for Bible studies, I usually dislike the questions at the end of the chapter. Especially the lazy “What was the ‘aha moment’ for you?” Yet, I have to admit that I actually had those “aha moments” reading this. Good summarization is an art form in itself. Reading through I would wonder how she would tackle some of the larger books of the prophets and the shorter books. What I especially liked was chapters about minor prophets were not just an afterthought. I think I got more out of these than I did regarding major prophets of whom I was more familiar with.
The best thing about this book is that it is not one that will just get stored in my bookcase gathering dust. This is one I will return to. Plus I am eagerly awaiting parish life to open back up since there are several people I knowI want to lend this to.