The Challenge of Baha'u'llah: Does God Still Speak to Humanity Today?

Overview

Members of the Baha'i Faith, the youngest of the independent world religions, represent one of the most culturally, geographically, and economically diverse groups of people on the planet, yet all are firmly united in their belief that the prophet and founder of their faith-Baha'u'llah (1817-1892), a Persian nobleman by birth-is none other than the "Promised One" prophesied in the scriptures of the world's great religions. Baha'u'llah Himself claimed to be the Messenger of God for humanity in this day, the bearer...
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Overview

Members of the Baha'i Faith, the youngest of the independent world religions, represent one of the most culturally, geographically, and economically diverse groups of people on the planet, yet all are firmly united in their belief that the prophet and founder of their faith-Baha'u'llah (1817-1892), a Persian nobleman by birth-is none other than the "Promised One" prophesied in the scriptures of the world's great religions. Baha'u'llah Himself claimed to be the Messenger of God for humanity in this day, the bearer of a new revelation from God that will transform the human race.

Author Gary Matthews addresses the central question that anyone investigating the life, character, and writings of Baha'u'llah must ask: Is this remarkable figure really Who He claims to be? The author explains why he believes the revelation of Baha'u'llah is not only divine in origin, but also represents a unique challenge of unequaled importance to humanity today. Matthews sets forth the claims of Baha'u'llah, summarizes His teachings, and then embarks on his own examination. His investigation correlates Baha'i prophecies with developments in history and science; considers Baha'u'llah's knowledge, wisdom, and character; describes His ability to reveal scripture and what it was like to be in His presence; discusses the profound influence of His writings; and more. Matthews concludes by inviting readers to make their own analysis of the record.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Who was Baha'u'llah (1817-92)? Why was he persecuted, tortured, imprisoned, and exiled by the political and religious authorities of his time? These volumes attempt to make the life of this self-proclaimed divinity known to a wider audience. Baha'u'llah-an Arabic title meaning "Glory of God"-was the prophet-founder of the Baha'i faith, whose worldwide adherents number roughly six million. Baha'is rank him with all the other great Messengers of God, believing him to be Christ incarnate and the unifier and redeemer of humankind. Poet and writer Cederquist and author, publisher, and lecturer Matthews (He Cometh in Clouds: A Baha'i View of Christ's Return), both Baha'is themselves, bring this unfamiliar prophet back to life in their respective works. Cederquist describes Baha'u'llah's life straightforwardly but with drama and a talent for evoking the ambience of the 19th-century Persian and Ottoman milieus. Meant for a general reading audience, this book includes a minimum of footnotes and endnotes. The five appendixes cover chronology, Baha'u'llah's family, the branches of Islam, and millennial Christians. A glossary clarifies names and terms. Matthews offers a somewhat more sophisticated examination of Baha'u'llah's claims to be God's mouthpiece, framing his argument in terms of how scientific methods of investigation might be applied to them (reconciliation of science and religion is a Baha'i principle). He uses this approach in discussing Baha'u'llah's predictions, knowledge, character, method of revelation, and influence to make a case for Baha'u'llah's claims. Parts of the book require thorough concentration, particularly where Matthews delves into physics and paleontology. The main drawbacks to these volumes are the absence of a glossary in Matthews's case and the use of capitalized pronouns for central Baha'i figures (a Baha'i mark of reverence but disconcerting to the uninitiated) and the occasional use jargon (e.g., "the Cause") in referring to the Baha'i faith. As most libraries seriously lack general resources on the Baha'i founder, both books are highly recommended for public libraries; the dramatic tone and readability of Cederquist's work may appeal to YA audiences.-William P. Collins, Library of Congress Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781931847162
  • Publisher: Baha'i Publishing Trust, U.S.
  • Publication date: 6/28/2005
  • Pages: 286
  • Sales rank: 1,435,995
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface vii
Acknowledgments xi
Introduction xiii
1 A Turning Point in History 1
2 Divine Springtime 7
3 Life's Laboratory 23
4 Baha'i Prophecies: Historical Events 30
5 Baha'i Prophecies: Scientific Discoveries 67
6 Baha'i Prophecies: Unfinished Business 112
7 The Object of All Knowledge 136
8 The Sun: Its Own Proof 162
9 The Book of God Is Open 201
Notes 214
Bibliography 225
Index 230
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2008

    Compelling

    I have read it and loaned it to a friend - who read it and loaned it to one of his professors. I think this will go on forever so I guess I need to buy another copy for myself. It is well-written, well-thought out and compelling. Written primarily for non-Christians, it does not use Biblical passages or prophecies to make its point. The other book I recommend, He Commeth with Clouds does (but covers the same territory while doing so).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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