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Talking Donkeys and Wheels of Fire: Bible Stories That are Truly Bizarre

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2004

    If You Thought the 'Shrek' Donkey Was Weird . . .

    If you say 'talking donkeys,' people probably think of the gabby donkey in the movie 'Shrek,' but as this collection of stories shows, there was a talking donkey centuries ago, way back in the Bible. The book looks at some of the weird stories in the Bible--not only the talking donkey (it's found in the Book of Numbers), also King David's extremely dysfunctional family (sibling incest, murder, etc), Elijah's chariot into heaven, and my favorite one, 'The Great Artemis Pep Rally,' a colorful story in the Book of Acts about an almost lethal anti-Christian riot on behalf of a pagan goddess. Although the book seems to be written to entertain, each chapter does conclude with a 'moral,' which I guess is expected in a religious book. Anyway, it is easy to read and (much as I hate to say this) probably more of a pleasure than reading the Bible itself. I could highly recommend it for Sunday school teachers (especially those who teach kids) who want to get their group's attention with a neat story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2004

    A Great Intro to the World of the Bible

    I think what grabbed me on the store shelf was the cover, with its wide-mouthed donkey, which is connected with the story of the prophet Balaam and his talking donkey. (Yeah, really!) The book is a collection of some of the weirdest and most amusing stories in the Bible. While some chapters are better than others, I think the book does a good job of making the Bible come to life, since it's obvious the author is fascinated by the many intriguing people and incidents in the Book, and his interest in the subject comes through on every page. No one could read this and still continue to believe that the Bible is only a boring book of 'Thou shalt nots.' However, even though the chapters make for easy and light reading, there is a 'moral' at the end of each chapter, which is fine, since I imagine lots of pastors and Sunday school teachers will probably use this book. It is a great book just to thumb through at random, with some very catchy chapter titles like 'Reptilian Chitchat' (a fresh look at the serpent in Eden) and 'A Splitting (Literally) Headache,' the violent story of the murder of Sisera. A favorite chapter was 'The Ultimate Dysfunctional Family,' a look at King David's squabbling kids, which seems like something off the Jerry Springer Show.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 2, 2003

    fun for the whole family

    This reviewer had no plans to read this inanely titled book, but fleetingly glanced at it over coffee. About an hour or so later, I finished a most entertaining biblical reference guide that is aimed at the younger set, but adults will enjoy it as testified by my spouse and adult son who subsequently read J. Stephen Lang¿s terrific work. The eighty-six stories come from the Old and New testaments and provide an intriguing looks at people and events that hook the audience. How can one not be curious about the raven who fed Elijah, Cain¿s wife, the link between food and religion, and Jacob falling for a similar switcheroo to that he and his mother pulled on his father. The collection is easy to read, and quite entertaining while educating. Perhaps the only objection by this reviewer is portrayal of Isaac as possibly not being impacted by his near death experience as a sacrifice. Of the three founding Fathers, he is the sole introvert needing his wealthy dad to find him a woman and then it was his cousin. TALKING DONKEYS AND WHEELS ON FIRE: BIBLE STORIES THAT ARE TRULY BIZARRE is fun for the whole family. <P>Harriet Klausner

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