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Posted April 20, 2012
In the book "The Rest of the Bible," the author deftly accomplishes what he sets out to do: give an "intriguing introduction" to these lesser known canonical books of Holy Scripture. He does this in a very accessible and winning style. But beyond simply laying out an introductory overview of each of the "Readables," Mathis also provides a wealth of historical background and details to bring out the richness of the texts. He also weaves in copious references to these books made by the New Testament authors and also by the Early Church Fathers. In addition, he brings out many spiritual principles found in these books which apply to the life of the modern-day Christian. But most of all, Mathis shows where the image and voice of Jesus Christ can be found within these texts, often with startling clarity. These books that were unfortunately discarded from the Bible during the Protestant Reformation can still speak to the followers of Jesus today. "The Rest of the Bible" encourages readers to delve into these rich texts for themselves. I am a Catholic Christian, and although this book is written from an Eastern Orthodox perspective, I learned a great deal about our common patrimony found in these often overlooked books. There are a great many interesting and exciting stories and pearls of wisdom to be found in these books which, after reading "The Rest of the Bible", I feel drawn to more fully appreciate. Our Protestant friends often deem themselves "Bible Christians." Orthodox and Catholic believers should similarly celebrate being "Bible Christians," all the more because our Bibles contain the full canon of inspired texts. "The Rest of the Bible" shows the way.
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