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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Riven


RivenRiven by Jerry B. Jenkins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This an excellent novel. There are two story lines that converge. The first is about a pastor that has pastored several small churches. If you know of someone like this you will relate to him. This pastor is gentle and taken advantage of in most of the churches. He eventually becomes a chaplain at a very secure prison. The other story line involves a young boy that grows up in a single parent home. He has many talents but decides to live the life of crime. Both the pastor and young boy experience the great gift of redemption by the end of the book. The book title is take from the song, "Rock of Ages." The lyrics are below"

Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee;
Let the water and the blood,
From Thy riven side which flowed,
Be of sin the double cure,
Save from wrath and make me pure.

Not the labor of my hands
Can fulfill Thy law's demands;
Could my zeal no respite know,
Could my tears forever flow,
All for sin could not atone,
Thou must save, and Thou alone.

Nothing in my hands I bring,
Simply to Thy cross I cling;
Naked, come to Thee for dress,
Helpless, look to Thee for grace:
Foul, I to the fountain fly,
Wash me, Savior, or I die.

While I draw this fleeting breath,
When mine eyes shall close in death,
When I soar to worlds unknown,
See Thee on Thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
Let me hide myself in Thee.

Also one of the many Scripture passages quoted is "Then Jesus said, 'Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.'”

Another song quoted in the book is the following:


The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star,
And reaches to the lowest hell;
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled,
And pardoned from his sin.

Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above
Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

If you enjoy Christian fiction you will love this book. It is long (526 pages) but is excellent!


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