Monday, July 26, 2010

The Forgotten Heavens

The Forgotten Heavens: Six Essays on CosmologyThe Forgotten Heavens: Six Essays on Cosmology by Douglas Wilson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Well. First off, this book is hard to review, as it is a collection of six essays from six authors on six different subjects, but here goes.

Evan Wilson's was most definitely the most unusual and paradigmatic, and I think I mean that in a good way, but I really couldn't say with any level of certainty. It was more foreign than anything I've read since I picked up my Hebrew Psalter (though it was very clearly and coherently written). It discusses the offices of angels (those that have fallen, those that haven't, and, as Terry Pratchett put it, those that did not so much fall as saunter vaguely downwards), and as an essay on such, is necessarily straining rather uncomfortably for solid ground to stand upon. Have no fear though: his thoughts are limber.

And such an outlook: Scripturally founded (I think) and absolutely alien to the modern evangelical mind, especially as regards Satan and our dualistic tendencies. Even if you disagree with the entire essay (no comment), it is absolutely worth reading. And he actually sold me on a couple of very unusual points, which I will not mention here, lest the stones start flying. I honestly haven't changed any of my opinions so dramatically since I found out that there were Christians that didn't believe in the rapture. A tremendously worthwhile read, if for no purpose beyond straining your mind and sharpening your skills of argumentation.

The last essay was probably the most well-balanced of them all, so far as solid Scriptural foundation and yet novel enough to be very interesting, and by interesting I mean that drooling starts at the title.

I'm tentative about reviewing any more of them, aside from the comment that Wilson's preface was as good as I was hoping, and I came to love the aside "and they went into the pit alive" even more than I did before.

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