History can be boring. Personal stories can be dry. And yet, in ‚ÄúThe Sword of the Lord,‚Äù Andrew Himes successfully blends both history and personal anecdotes into a craftily woven tale of his own journey and his family‚Äôs legacy in American history and in the fundamentalist movement.
The past, both historic distant and his own, come to life in this accessible tale of the ups and downs of Christians in America.
Due to my own personal upbringing in a church steeped in fundamentalism and legalism, and seeing both positives and negatives of Christians who were adamantly convinced of their ‚Äúrightness,‚Äù I found this book very refreshing. Many of the stories struck a familiar chord within me.
I believe that human nature tends to be reactionary. Often the decisions and actions of one individual or group are actually in direct reaction to another. As I read this book, two reactions jumped out at me. First was Andrew‚Äôs reaction to the effects of fundamentalism. He was drawn to it‚Äôs positives at an early age, and then reacted strongly to the hypocrisy he witnessed within its ranks. But more prominent on the pages of this book is fundamentalism‚Äôs reaction to the world around it: the world of non-Christians; the world of liberal and modern Christians; and racial tensions in the South among others.
Fittingly, the final chapter is not a conclusion. Rather it is a continuation of the journey on which Andrew finds himself and invites others to join.
If you want a book that is part historical, part autobiographical and part soul-searching, then you would enjoy ‚ÄúThe Sword of the Lord.‚Äù I highly recommend it.