America's Prophet: Moses and the American Story

America's Prophet: Moses and the American Story

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by Bruce Feiler
     
 

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The exodus story is America's story. Moses is our real founding father.

The pilgrims quoted his story. Franklin and Jefferson proposed he appear on the U.S. seal. Washington and Lincoln were called his incarnations. The Statue of Liberty and Superman were molded in his image. Martin Luther King, Jr., invoked him the night before he

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Overview

The exodus story is America's story. Moses is our real founding father.

The pilgrims quoted his story. Franklin and Jefferson proposed he appear on the U.S. seal. Washington and Lincoln were called his incarnations. The Statue of Liberty and Superman were molded in his image. Martin Luther King, Jr., invoked him the night before he died. Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama cited him as inspiration. For four hundred years, one figure inspired more Americans than any other. His name is Moses.

In this groundbreaking book, New York Times bestselling author Bruce Feiler travels through touchstones in American history and traces the biblical prophet's influence from the Mayflower through today. He visits the island where the pilgrims spent their first Sabbath, climbs the bell tower where the Liberty Bell was inscribed with a quote from Moses, retraces the Underground Railroad where "Go Down, Moses" was the national anthem of slaves, and dons the robe Charlton Heston wore in The Ten Commandments.

"Even a cursory review of American history indicates that Moses has emboldened leaders of all stripes," Feiler writes, "patriot and loyalist, slave and master, Jew and Christian. Could the persistence of his story serve as a reminder of our shared national values? Could he serve as a unifying force in a disunifying time? If Moses could split the Red Sea, could he unsplit America?"

One part adventure story, one part literary detective story, one part exploration of faith in contemporary life, America's Prophet takes readers through the landmarks of America's narrative—from Gettysburg to Selma, the Silver Screen to the Oval Office—to understand how Moses has shaped the nation's character.

Meticulously researched and highly readable, America's Prophet is a thrilling, original work of history that will forever change how we view America, our faith, and our future.

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Editorial Reviews

Whether they think of it as coincidental or providential, for many Americans, the story of our country evokes the biblical saga of the Exodus. This deep connection has been felt since the earliest years of Pilgrim settlements. Since then, the story of Moses and the exiled Israelites has been linked to the American epoch by Founding Fathers, presidents, religious leaders, civil rights activists, writers, and filmmakers. In America's Prophet, Bruce Feiler (Walking the Bible; Abraham) brings the message of Moses home to our country. By using those deeply felt parallels, he explores what we see in this ancient patriarch and why we identify so closely with his mission.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061939259
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
10/06/2009
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
894,515
File size:
8 MB

What People are saying about this

Simon Winchester
“This is one of the most original, intelligent and endlessly fascinating books I have read in years: it should become a set book for anyone wanting to know what truly makes America tick.”
Douglas Brinkley
“What a smart, original, and deeply intriguing reflection on the role Moses playedyes, Mosesin U.S. history. America’s Prophet is Bruce Feiler at his innovative best: compelling, sweeping and engaging. Highly recommended!”
Tony Horwitz
“With a journalist eye and an adventurers spirit, Bruce Feiler brings his prodigious gifts of biblical analysis to a reconsideration of Moses as the essential prophet of the American Experience. This is an accessible and engaging book of indispensible insight.”

Meet the Author

Bruce Feiler is the author of six consecutive New York Times bestsellers, including Abraham, Where God Was Born, America's Prophet, The Council of Dads, and The Secrets of Happy Families. He is a columnist for the New York Times, a popular lecturer, and a frequent commentator on radio and television. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and twin daughters.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
New York, New York
Date of Birth:
October 25, 1964
Place of Birth:
Savannah, Georgia
Education:
B.A., Yale University, 1987; M.Phil. in international relations, Cambridge University, 1991

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America's Prophet: How the Story of Moses Shaped America 3.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
Heart2Heart More than 1 year ago
I know most of you know the story of Moses and the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt into the land of milk and honey. But did you ever stop and think just how that story still relates to America? Do you see the correlation in the Pilgrims fleeing their ruling King James of England in search of the New Land? Or how many of our past presidents have made reference to the story of Moses and his life, the instruction from God, the giving of the 10 Commandments, and thus failure to follow God. Moses was commanded to follow God's instruction to the T, and every time he didn't he was punished. He never got to see the fulfillment of the Promised Land to the people he led for 40 years in the desert. In the book, America's Prophet, How The Story of Moses Shaped America by Bruce Feiler, you are taken back to the story of Moses and see how many times this very man and his life is repeated through our own history in America. I can honestly tell you as someone who loves history and faith in God, this book spoke to my heart and soul. I absolutely loved seeing God's hand in the creation of this once blessed nation and how He continues to mold and shape us through the retelling of the story. You'll learn about the history and creation of the liberty bell and learn how God was involved. What the actual inscription means that is molded into the bell. You'll learn how valuable the Bible was that Washington used, what scripture was open when he took his oath of office and what the connection was to September 11, 2001. You'll learn what the original seal was supposed to be, and how we got to the eagle and one-eye pyramid, and so much more. I think I interrupted my husband so much with each new tidbit I learned and couldn't wait to share it. This is a must read for those that love history, especially American History and how God really worked in this great nation even to the present day. I received this book compliments of TLC Book Tours for my honest review and must say it's a permanent fixture in our library now for our kids to learn about as we study history. Any parent would benefit from teaching their kids a little bit more about what's missing from our traditional history books.
mosesmom More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderfully researched history of the United States and how we got to where we are today. Moses has been with us all the way from the Pilgrams, to our first President, slavery, Civil War, Emancipation and into New York Harbor to the Statue of Liberty. This a great read.
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avidreader73 More than 1 year ago
Oh, the things they fail to teach us in school. A must read.
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