- Paperback: 166 pages
- Publisher: America Star Books (July 14, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1632497891
- ISBN-13: 978-1632497895
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.7 ounces
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The Christmas Victory: A Gem of a Sermon, All Wrapped Up in a Historical Novel Paperback – July 14, 2014
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From the Author
[From the Foreword:] How I came to write this book.
First of all, I did NOT plan to write another book. With a Biblical novel, which I recently revised an expanded, a time travel novel and a self-help book under my belt, my only plans were for promotion.
Secondly, when I was in Seminary, circa 1974, The Lord began to give me insight into the meaning of Isaiah 7:14 from the use of language and context. I came up with a unique interpretation which I did not find anywhere else, but which I found to be extremely practical.
Thirdly, I wrote an article on my findings and published it in my ezine and on my Squidoo page.
Fourthly, two years ago in November (2012) I was given the opportunity to preach around Christmas time and decided to use my idea and preach on Is.7:14. I entitled the message "The Christmas Victory." It was well received by many, but some thought it a bit esoteric, so last year (2013) I got the idea to rework it and asked to preach it again. I revised it to make it more understandable and preached it on Dec.15, 2013 at Faith Presbyterian Church in Pembroke Pines Florida. I had nothing but good comments this time.
Fifthly, as an illustration, toward the end of the sermon, I used Paul Harvey's bird story, of which he says he couldn't trace the parentage.
Sixthly, for the choir anthem, I had the choir sing "I heard the bells on Christmas Day," and I gave a brief history of the writing of the song, which I derived from the internet.
Seventhly, while I was working on my sermon and the hymn history, a friend of mine with whom I was praying on the phone, asked me if I were writing another book. I told him NO, and asked why he had asked. He said he felt the Lord telling him to pray for the book I was writing. I told him again, I'm not writing any book and have no intention of writing another book.
Eighthly, BUT, the more I thought both about my sermon (and the fact that it needed to reach a larger audience) and the history behind that hymn (the story of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow) and the bird story, I felt that these elements perhaps did have the making of another novel. The quencher was when I saw an episode of the T.V. Show "Touched by an Angel" in which Mark Twain is affected by the Longfellow poem. I decided to try to tie all these elements together as a way of getting my sermon (which is found typed in all caps in Chapter 6) a larger audience by wrapping it up in a novel. And, by the way, although this entire work is copyrighted, I hereby release the copyright as it pertains to the use of the sermon in Chapter 6 by fellow preachers of the gospel. I desire the sermon to reach as large an audience as possible. Therefore any preacher who so desires may take the sermon or the sermon idea, (including the information in the note at the bottom of the chapter and the complete outline in the Appendix) and use it, modifying slightly wherever they deem necessary (such as deleting any mention of the civil war.)
I truly hope you enjoy reading this novel as much as I enjoyed writing it.
----James M. Becher
From the Back Cover
Aside from both being authors, what do the lives of Henry Wadsworth. Longfellow and Mark Twain have in common? The answer is that both of their lives contained terrible tragedies from which they eventually found real hope and spiritual meaning--at least in this novel.
This book is about one little sermon and one, even littler poem, and how, fictionally, they may have influenced and given hope to, not only the author of the poem, Henry W. Longfellow, but also his son, Charles Mark Twain, whom Charles meets. Though suffering tragic losses, these all eventually find hope and spiritual fulfillment.
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