The Prophet Paperback – Oct 15 2007
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From the Inside Flap
Behind the men who shaped history are the heroes who forever changed it.
With her hallmark touches of brilliant prose and gripping characterizations, Francine Rivers tells the stories of five men who faithfully sought after God in the shadows of God's chosen leaders.
These five men answered God's call to serve Him faithfully without recognition or fame. They gave everything, knowing that their reward might not come until the next life. Be challenged by these faithful men whose stories we must never forget. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
From the Back Cover
A man of solitude, who felt at home among the hills.
A man of conviction, who heard when God called.
A man of fortitude, who spoke to a nation unwilling to listen.
The Israelites rebelled against God and were devoured by war. But first they were warned by a prophet who refused to be turned away.
Amos --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.See all Product Description
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
As he grows into adulthood, Amos sees more practices that disturb him. He detests the necessary trips to Jerusalem where he notices that even the Priests break the holiest of laws and only finds comfort tending his flock. God sends him to Bethel, a place he loathes more than Jerusalem. His mission to spread the message that these may be the good times thanks to the Lord, but they will end if the people continue to break the Torah. Amos does his Lord's bidding though he knows before he begins that the message will make him a pariah.
The fourth Sons of Encouragement biblical biographical fiction (see THE PRINCE, THE WARRIOR and THE PRIEST) is a delightful look at the fascinating Amos, whose message is rejected by those he tries to reach. Labeled a "minor prophet", he talks of gloom and doom judgment day coming (an early democrat) to the Northern Kingdom of Samaria during a time when the ecomony was expanding by selling the torah's values under the label of growth (an early republican). Readers will appreciate his message that still holds true today.
I liked how the story could be related to people in today's world. If we're not careful we'll end up just like the kingdom of Israel. Another thing I liked was the cameo of Hosea, another prophet, here as a young man. His story is hinted at and can be told fully in as a parable in another of River's books, Reedeming Love. This book is recommended if you have trouble understanding the book of Amos. It's amazing how fiction makes historical and biblical event more clear.
Amos was relentless in his prophesying. Over and over the novella reiterated the same message. The people complained; I complained. The thing is this. The bible preaches the same message again and again. It works. As redundant as the bible is, I enjoy reading it. And let's be honest here. Even without the spiritual relevance, the bible has historical merit even non-Christians might enjoy. Like I said, the repetition works for the bible, but for a fictional work, the style just doesn't jive.
Now I ragged about the writing a little, how about a bit of praise? Ms. Rivers did a wonderful job setting up Amos. The parallelism between Amos and the Good Shepard played throughout the novella was fantastic. Amos loved his flock but sometimes had to make the tough choices for the sake of the whole. It saddened him, but he did what had to be done. Like pruning. I've wondered at times why God does what He does. Ms. Rivers simplified the rationale.
Was there a spiritual message to The Prophet? Yes. Circumcise your heart. Turn to God. And don't think because everything is dandy in your life, God approves of your actions. I loved that. Look inward and recognize what's truly in your hearts and don't be so quick to condemn others. One line truly stood out for me in this work. "What is it in us that rejoices at the judgment upon others, while pleading that ours be overlooked?" Now, isn't the truth of it?
In the Prophet, the life of Amos is examined. Amos’s message to the people of Israel was unpopular. He challenged those who were enjoying the blessings of prosperity.
This was one of those books that I didn’t want to end. I could identify with Amos, a simple sheep herder. He could easily have been the next door neighbor. As I read this book I grew to love this prophet of God. He didn’t come from greatness or proclaim to be anyone of importance. Amos spoke the word he felt God was giving him. I now know the man in greater detail and the Bible has come alive in much clearer intimacy.