The Sword

Saturday, March 19, 2011

“The Word of Dieu cannot die. I have hidden this Book in the church as a treasure for you … O finder, may the Eternal One bless you. I give you a precious gift – the Sacred Scripture. Know this: the truth will set you free.”

Book: The Sword by Bryan M. Litfin, Crossway, 2010
The Sword: A Novel (Chiveis Trilogy) 
Genre: Futuristic Fantasy
Target Audience: Boys & Girls 13-19
Subjects: God’s Word, Fellowship with believers, Persecution
Summary: Teo and Ana live in a post-apocalyptic world and know little to nothing about the religion of the ancients until, in the midst of fantastical adventure, they discover a mostly complete copy of the Bible. Taking it back to their home, however, means that they must tread lightly in a land where three false gods reign. In the midst of further danger and adventure, they must determine their course to learn about, follow, and proclaim the true God of the Ancients. While trying to start a fellowship of believers, they face obstacles, subversion, and outright persecution. These lead them to more desperate situations involving facing up to the religious leaders of the false gods. The choice is before them to run, to renounce their new-found faith, or to stand and boldly proclaim the truth.
Notes: This story has been told before in The Book of Eli movie (without the graphic description of violence), Gilbert Morris’ The Seven Sleepers series,  The Outriders by Kathryn Mackel and to a smaller degree in City of Ember (“We need to tell them what’s up here.”). This one emphasizes the continuance of Scripture and how God will ensure that everyone understands who He is. The world of the Ancients plays a somewhat minor role, compared to some stories, and the feel of the book ends up being of the pre-industrial fantasy genre complete with swordplay, discovery of gunpowder, and rustic living. It does, however, involve some older-teen themes including death & destruction, sexual temptation, and the Gnostic debate regarding secret meanings of the scriptures. I would recommend that it not be handed to someone who isn’t old enough to understand the meaning of “post-apocalyptic”. The beauty of it is the power of the Scriptures on the lives of those who read it. The characters have nothing more than Genesis and some of the Psalms, but it makes enough of an impact on them to change their entire worldview and hold to the commitment to Dieu – even at the point of death.  
Recommendation Scale: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Gil & J:-)mi

Matthew 24:35 – “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”


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