Reflections from Seminary Students

Book Review–Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire: Book 1)

June 1st, 2012 § 0 Comments

Game of Thrones has be receiving increased popularity over the last several months as George R.R. Martin’s series of novels (the first five are currently published) are being made into an HBO series. While the HBO series seems to be greatly exaggerating the number of scenes including sex, nudity and incest, it appears fairly accurate in terms of fighting, drinking and foul language.  Religion plays an interesting role in the book as some, the Starks, pray to the old gods, while others have abandoned them for new, more relatable, and less creepy gods.  The book itself is compelling, although very light on the fantasy particularly compared to The Lord of the Rings Trilogy or The Kingkiller Chronicle.

Instead of having a single protagonist there are eight point of view (POV) characters in the novel, which leads to a multilayered, though at times a frustrating read as storylines are picked up and abandoned for a time every chapter.  The following is a short look at each of the POV characters and their role in the novel. » Read the rest of this entry «

Book Review–The Great Divorce

April 20th, 2012 § 0 Comments

One of my favorite theological concepts to study is eschatology.  Eschatology, or the study of “last things,” centers around what we as Christians believe will happen at the end of time, what happens to our souls and bodies after death, and what the afterlife might look like.  While the questions that eschatology asks may seem nothing more than esoteric speculations for the future, I am fully convinced that our beliefs about eschatology deeply impact how we live our lives.  As Karl Barth writes in Dogmatics in Outline eschatology is the most practical of theologies:

The Christian hope does not lead us away from this life: it is rather the uncovering of the truth in which God sees our life.  It is the conquest of death, but not a flight into the Beyond.  The reality of this life is involved.  Eschatology, rightly understood, is the most practical thing that can be thought.  In the eschaton the light falls from above into our life.  We await this light.

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