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The Carpenter's Apprentice: The Spiritual Biography of Jimmy Carter Hardcover – May, 1996

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Feeling that the faith of the thirty-ninth president is insufficiently emphasized in other books about him, Ariail, pastor of the congregation to which Jimmy Carter belongs, and Christian journalist Heckler-Feltz home in on the topic. Their good book is not so much biography as publicity--of a kind many will be glad to hear. Carter accepted Christ early and commenced Christian service early, too, conducting Bible study classes while a cadet at Annapolis and later on the submarine on which he was a junior officer. He still teaches the Bible, drawing thousands of visitors each year to his Sunday classes at Maranatha Baptist Church. The depth and sincerity of conviction that this one of his activities demonstrates undergirds all the others--building houses with Habitat for Humanity, promoting economic justice and development through the Carter Center in Atlanta, and "waging peace" among warring nations out of the utterly, thrillingly Christian understanding that "all of us are fallible, and God doesn't want us to judge each other but to forgive." Amen. Ray Olson

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Zondervan Publishing Company; First Edition edition (May 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0310200121
  • ISBN-13: 978-0310200123
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 5.8 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,220,314 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dennis Phillips on April 17, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Dan Ariail is the pastor of Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Georgia and Maranatha is the home Church of Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter where they are active members. Rev. Ariail with the assistance of Cheryl Heckler-Feltz has attempted to put together a book that sheds some light on the Carter's spiritual life. It is indeed hard to understand the Presidency and post-Presidency of James Earl Carter without coming to grips with his basic religious beliefs. After all, while most former Presidents of both parties spend most of their time making huge sums of money or just relaxing, Jimmy Carter has done more to help more people than almost any man alive has. What is it that drives this wonderful man as he seeks to do good day after day? According to this book and several by Carter himself it is the former President's faith in God and his relationship with Christ.
Unfortunately, this book is mostly made up of accounts that have already been written about by Carter in his own books. In fact, if one were to combine several of Carter's books, this could be the condensed version. There are also too many long quotes from Carter's speeches and Sunday school lessons included in the text. With the book being as short as it is I felt the space could have been better used. Especially if it had been used to gain some extra insight from a man who knows Mr. & Mrs. Carter so well. I finished this book thinking a great opportunity had been missed.
There are however several wonderful insights to be found in this book. For example there are stories of Jimmy Carter going out with his Pastor to visit new families in the community which is just as much a part of his Christian outreach as are his diplomatic efforts.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Outstanding book in helping one to understand the President. Will be invaluable to historians in later years. I encourage attendance at one of his Sunday School lessons. Makes a great vacation to go to that area, stay in the Plains hotel, visit his boyhood home and high school. Go to nearby Andersonville and Americus, the home of Habitat for Humanity and see their outdoor museum of houses.
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