I was provided with a review copy (ebook) of the book The Derision of Heaven by Michael Whitworth. I was not asked to provide a positive review, merely an objective one.
Whitworth’s book is a study of the biblical book of Daniel, falling somewhere between scholarly commentary and popular devotional. With 425 endnotes, the documentation is there to support a scholarly study, yet Whitworth has tried to make the book accessible to the average reader.
Each of the ten chapters is divided into sections of textual study followed by a final section of “talking points.” The talking points focus on practical application, though there is plenty of application throughout the book.
Each of the first nine chapters covers one chapter of Daniel, then the last three chapters are studied as one section. Whitworth admits being more comfortable with the narrative sections of the book than he is with the visionary sections, and that shows in the writing. Still, he does a good job of taking both the familiar (stories like the lions’ den and the fiery furnace) and the unfamiliar (the prophetic sections) and presenting them in a way that everyone can read them profitably.
Overall, it’s an excellent work, one to be commended to the casual Bible reader and the serious student alike. The flaws I noticed were minor. There were a couple of places were I felt the editor could have done a better job; an unclear antecedent in the Q&A section makes it sound like the book of Daniel was written during Hitler’s lifetime.
The other distracting factor for me was the author’s habit of inserting humorous comments at random times. (Ironically, that’s something I’m often guilty of)
As I said, those are minor flaws. I highly recommend The Derision of Heaven to anyone interested in learning more about the book of Daniel.
The following information is being presented as a service to my readers. I receive no compensation for this:
The author is offering some giveaways today, Tuesday, September 3, to anyone who purchases the book. You can visit his blog for details. Here’s the information that was sent to me:
My book “The Derision of Heaven: A Guide to Daniel” is nearing its OFFICIAL release date of September 3rd. I want to personally thank you for getting the word out about it. On Sept. 3, I will be encouraging folks to buy the book from Amazon.com or a Christian bookstore. If they email me their receipt, I’ll enter them into a contest to win an iPad Mini 16GB WiFi. The more books purchased, the more chances you will receive to win. But these purchases have to come on Sept. 3. There is a very strong chance this book could make the Amazon Bestseller list. If that happens, it would be exposed to a much larger audience than I could ever give it. That is important because I believe in this book’s message; more than a guide to Daniel, it is an urgent message for Christians engaged in a bitter culture war. The church needs to be studying Daniel RIGHT NOW!
That’s why I need your help. Tell your friends about the book and encourage them to purchase a copy on Sept. 3. Also, I hope you will consider buying copies on Sept. 3 (it’s never too late to begin your Christmas shopping!). Share the news via social media. Talk to members of your congregation about purchasing this book. Along with the iPad Mini, I’ll be giving away other prizes, such as an ESV Study Bible and 20 SIGNED copies of my next book, “Living & Longing for the Lord.” You will get an extra chance at these prizes every time you share the news on social media.
All the details will be on my blog on Sept. 3. Bookmark start2finishblog.com and set a reminder to check it out on Tuesday, Sept. 3.