Customer Review

102 of 107 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Story: An excellent attempt at a difficult task, September 9, 2011
This review is from: The Story, NIV: The Bible as One Continuing Story of God and His People (Kindle Edition)
It is not an easy task to reduce the size of the Bible to that of a typical novel. The Story, an excellent attempt at that task, is a sanitized and highly condensed version of the Bible. Early anomalous biblical stories (for example, God being concerned about primitive man reaching God's heavenly domain via a massive building project or Sons of God having relations with human females resulting in the birth of giants) are omitted. Most of the blood and gore including God-sanctioned genocides are omitted. Also most of the poetic section is omitted; nothing from Job, Ecclesiastes, or Song of Songs, and only a few Psalms and Proverbs are included. This is acceptable since the poetic section is somewhat tangential to the overall story. The included portions of the New Testament are summaries of the Gospels, Acts, some of Paul's epistles, and Revelation. I consider this a good book for one who is somewhat biblically illiterate desiring to understand Christianity from an evangelical point of view. However, for one seeking what it really means to be a follower of Christ, it is somewhat weak. For example, some of the most important portions of the Sermon on the Mount are omitted, and the entire Book of James is omitted. The omission of the Golden Rule may be the most serious flaw, especially in light of the fact that Jesus declares it to be the essence of the entire Law and Prophets. Also the essential aspect of relating to the least in society as Jesus explained in Matthew 25 is omitted. In summary, The Story is strong on encouraging one to become a Christian but somewhat weak on what that entails.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 10, 2012 9:43:35 AM PST
David A. says:
Good comment, but one correction:

"The omission of the Golden Rule may be the most serious flaw, especially in light of the fact that Jesus declares it to be the essence of the entire Law and Prophets."

Jesus declared the so-called Great Commandment(s) to be the essence of the whole Law and Prophets: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and strength" and "Love your neighbor as yourself." The Golden Rule is "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," which is one practical outworking of the Great Commandment.

Posted on Jan 24, 2013 4:01:05 AM PST
Joe, this is an unfair review. THE STORY was never intended to cover the details of what it means to follow Christ! So to criticize it for failing to do something it was *never intended* to do, is just plain silly. Its sole intention is to give the reader an overview of the sprawling, multigenerational world-story of Scripture. It accomplishes that.

Posted on Feb 28, 2015 5:24:30 AM PST
mafpac says:
It doesn't sound unfair, it sounds objective and honest. It seems obvious (IMO) that this would not be comprehensive, but in what way? This review has helped me make a more informed decision in deciding if I think I and my grandson might benefit from it. I don't see the review as negative, but informative and quite helpful.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 1, 2015 6:02:15 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Mar 1, 2015 6:03:34 AM PST
Sorry, mafpac - but no, Joe's review was unfair. I'll reiterate: he's criticizing this book for failing to do something it was *never intended* to do. Its purpose is to give readers an *overview* of the biblical worldview. It accomplishes that, and therefore is a *success*, not a failure.

Joe may have provided you some details about the book - but he used those details as a basis for unfair criticism. If you had just read the Preface online you'd have discovered what you need to know. The Preface states that this book "opens a door to God's truth. . . . This story offers a glimpse of people in a different time and place[.]" And then there's this key line: "you will get a sense of the 'big picture' of the Bible."

The "BIG PICTURE." That's what this book is for. And, again, it accomplishes that goal. It's absurd to criticize it for failing to accomplish some _other_ goal when it was never intended to!

Not only that, but you can also read the outline of the book so that you know ahead of time what parts of the Bible are included and which aren't. It's not as if the editors are trying to "fool" you or something.
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