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07 April 2006
  Skeleton in God's Closet

I read this a few months back. A coworker of mine read it and told me about it, I had heard about Paul Maier before, I'd even seen some of his videos about Acts and I've met him once or twice, but I'd never read this book. The interesting thing about the friend who recommended it to me was he is one of those "unreligious" folks. But he was really excited about the book and I decided that it might be a good idea to read it, too. If for no other reason than to be able to talk about it over beer mugs, but why do I bring it up now? There has been some talk about a new book coming out called the Jesus Papers, which, if understand it correctly, does its darnedest to disprove the basic tenents of Christianity... Jesus' resurrection.

A Skeleton in God's Closet is an interesting book. It has a truly intriguing premise: the bones of Jesus are found in a grave outside of Jerusalem by an archaeologist. It is part adventure, part archaeological sleuth story, part romance, and part discussion of faith. I'm reluctant to say much about it because I don't want to give away the whole story.

Maier's well known New Testement scholarship comes through, as does his knowledge of archaeology. He stitches together a good story that certainly kept my interest (this book is a nice counter point to the Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. It certainly is more meaty, too. At times, though Maier does get a bit too deep into the minutiae of archaeology, but that can be forgiven.

This book did bring up some thoughts that I hadn't had before for example: what would happen if someone did truly find the bones of Christ (and could prove it without a doubt)? How would the world react?

Who is this book for? I'd say its for just about anyone who likes a good thinking novel. It will make the reader think and, hopefully will make the reader ask questions. It might be a fun book to read as a book club selection particularly in the church setting... a ladies aide book club? I'd also this book would be a good counterpoint to the Da Vinci Code, it asks questions, but doesn't try to debunk anything that can't be debunked. Actually, it could be a great be a faith stregnthener (poor word choice, but I think you get my meaning).

I can't recommend this book enough.

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Comments:
I loved this book and its sequel, More Than a Skeleton.
 
archaeology
 
Thanks anon. I fixed archaeology and noticed he was missing an 'i' in minutiae. :)
 
i write phonetically. *shrugs*
 
cgqzI also recommend this book! It's like an illustration of "If Christ were not raised, our faith is in vain."

The sequel was good too, but couldn't live up to the first.
 
I read this book a few years ago, so my recollection is getting foggy. However, I know I liked the book very much and recommend others read it. It should make you think.

To me, the real proof of Christianity is the changed lives of the disciples who had been so defeated after the
Crucifixion and later went out to spread the word. They would not have given their lives if they had fabricated a hoax.
 
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