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Eternity in Their Hearts [Paperback]

Don Richardson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)

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Paperback, May 1984 --  
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Book Description

May 1984
The photograph on the cover of this book portrays the ruins of Machu Picchu, a majestic fortess in Peru built in the fifteenth century. Anyone who has been awed by its splendor will want to read how Pachacuti, the Inca king who founded it, accomplished something far more significant than merely building fortesses, temples or monuments. His story is yet another example of how the concept of a supreme God has existed for centuries in hundreds of cultures throughtout the world.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most helpful customer reviews
Excellent study of tribal and ethnic traditions and myths that point to the true God of Creation and His Son the Messiah of Israel. Don Richardson shows stories of people who said that they once knew the true God, but somehow either lost the Book, or lost contact with Him. One tribe said that they were sure that a light-skinned messenger would come someday to tell about the Son of God. So sure were they that they had appointed people to watch for these messengers. This paved the way for the actual missionaries to share Christ with them, which was accepted eagerly. Other examples are people who had lost a Book, and were waiting for someone to restore it to them. One example was recorded in the Bible where Paul preached on Mars Hill to the Greeks about the unknown God. Richardson goes back further to tell about the story of Epimenides and the sacrificing of "dedicated" sheep to ask the "unknown God" to cure the city of a deadly plague, after they had offered atoning sacrifices to all of the gods that they had to no avail.
Very interesting reading. One disappointment is that in the last chapter he promises a book showing the spreading of Christianity in the last 2000 years, and the missionary fervor of the "World's First Bible Belt" (a 7,000-mile one completely encircling the Mediterranean Sea), but I can't find that this book has ever been published. This book leaves you wanting to find out more, so I recommend the author's "Peace Child" and "Lords of the Earth" talking about the people and customers of Dutch New Guinea (Irian Jaya), and how these people came to know the Lord Jesus Christ.
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I found this an exciting book because it is filled with numerous historical examples of peoples from diverse cultures the world over whose lives have been blessed by the missionary spread of the Gospel.
If you've ever been challenged, confused or concerned that the Gospel is something exclusively white, European and male that for primarily greedy, arrogant and condescending reasons has been imposed upon other cultures this is a book you may want to read.
I loved it. I've read it several times and found it easy to read and to understand.
The author himself is a missionary. He presents numerous factual examples of what he calls 'redemptive analogies'. These are "hidden keys" within the very fabric of non-European cultures that have wisely been recognized and utilized by many (but of course not all) missionaries over the centuries.
In contrast to seeing the Gospel as something illegitimate and disrespectful imposed upon the unsuspecting, ignorant, gullible and uncivilized 'heathen' the beautiful and respectful truth of God's redeeming love for all humankind is shown to have blessed millions. Have you only heard about the wolves in sheeps clothing? Read this book and hear about some amazing stories of blessings.
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The premise that this author brings to the table is fascinating and well worth reading about. In it self it deserves a 5 star rating, however, I did have a problem with the way the book was put together and the editing that went (or didn't) go into it.
It was this problem that caused me to lose interest and put it down somewhere in the middle. I have a many books in this state, and it is my experience that I seldom get around to finishing them. I felt compelled however to write a review as I don't feel it is necessarily good for the system to only write about books that we loved.
The idea that God revealed Himself (or better is currently and always revealing Himself) to all peoples on the earth should not be that controversial. I imagine it is to some because they have the fault of being a bit arrogant. It is not hard, after all, to go to some small little country church in the middle of Ohio and find a group of people that feel they are the only ones going to heaven.
Mark Twain once made the statement (I'll paraphrase) that the some have reduced the number of the elect to such a small group they are hardly worth saving. It is important, I think, to reflect on what this skeptic had to say and how it relates to the general idea behind this book. It doesn't seem reasonable to think that God would make it impossible to most of mankind to relate to Him. And it doesn't seem reasonable to think that some small group in Ohio is the only group special enough to understand the revelation of God Almighty.
Of course I am not saying by any means that there is (in my belief) any way to heaven besides through Christ, or that this book purports to say that there is either, but that the way to Christ is not always through an American church service or a Billy Graham crusade.
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4.0 out of 5 stars His Ways are Indeed Higher Nov. 5 2002
One negative result of living in a society in which Christian is synonymous with status quo is that we begin to make the assumption that our religion is bound up intrinsically in our civilization. When God is reduced to the "god of western civilization," or even further to the "god of good upstanding americans," the inevitable result is that God is tamed and becomes a glorified household god. The sheer power and majesty of the True God is forgotten. This book provides an excellent reminder that His ways are truly higher than ours, and that He does indeed transcend any human culture in a way we can only see dimly.
If you appreciate fictional redemptive allegories such as Lewis' Til We Have Faces this book you will enjoy the excellent accounts provided of counterparts found the oral traditions of various peoples.
The book also led me to reflect on God's nature as demonstrated in the Biblical accounts of Job, Melchizedek and other non-Jewish followers of the true God, and has provides fodder for some very interesting insights into and discussions on the nature of election and God's sovereignty as displayed through his choosing some to be candidates for His grace.
I can't give this book five stars because I find fault with Richardson for not providing more information about his research and sources for the book. In all fairness, though, it isn't intended to be a scholarly work. Overall, this is a great, very insightful read.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
An excellent book, it should change your understanding of the world around you, and change your life.
Published 2 months ago by Taras Bulba
5.0 out of 5 stars very insightfull
I learned a lot from this book, great read. It provides insight into many things I was wondering about, and clarified many parts of scripture
Published 2 months ago by Philip Schachtner
3.0 out of 5 stars Something Didn't Sit Quite Right
I'm still struggling to put my finger on exactly what I thought of this book, however, I've thought about it enough that I'm sure this review isn't premature. Read more
Published on Aug. 16 2011 by Eternal Decree
5.0 out of 5 stars Caught me by surprise!
I bought this book because it was this month's title for our book discussion club and was caught by surprise at it's message. Read more
Published on Nov. 21 2010 by GL
5.0 out of 5 stars World Religions Seek to Know Jesus
Bismillah Ar-Rahman Ar-Rahim. In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious Son, the Most Merciful Holy Spirit. Read more
Published on June 24 2004
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a wonderful book!
Mr. Richardson does an excellent job of explaining the difference between General and Special Revelation along with explaining how God uses both to spread his Word. Read more
Published on June 11 2004 by Clark D. Goble
5.0 out of 5 stars Think Acts 17:23
Demonstrates conclusively that God, Himself, is actively involved in preparing the hearts of people in all cultures of the world. Paul was our first example of adapting the gospel. Read more
Published on Jan. 20 2003 by Andrew
5.0 out of 5 stars The Circle Inside the Sphere
The thesis of this book is that there is a "One True God" who has, in one form of special revelation or another, revelaed Himself to all peoples within His creation. Read more
Published on Sept. 7 2002 by CyberAnth
5.0 out of 5 stars The Circle Inside the Sphere
The thesis of this book is that there is a "One True God" has, in one form of special rfevelation or another, revelaed Himself to all peoples within His creation. Read more
Published on Sept. 7 2002 by CyberAnth
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