Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Chasm by Randy Alcorn

Having had readone of the best apologetics books on God and the purpose of evil and suffering-  If God is Good, by Randy Alcorn, I was curious to read the allegorical fiction piece, The Chasm, also by the same author.  In the former book, it is clear that Alcorn has deep insight into biblical truths, and effectively delivers his biblical based message.  Considering that he has proved himself as an effective apologist, I anticipated that any fictional piece of writing would be based on biblical principals, as well. 

The Chasm is obviously an allegory for the story of salvation: sin, temptation, faith, free will and eternal salvation.  Basically is everything is covered here in symbolic or allegorical form.  The characters, places, objects and even the emotions have a symbolic counterpart to actual bible based principals and truths.  The city of Charis is spiritually significant as well as Joshua, and every other element of the story.  Perhaps for those readers who like liked the spiritual symbolism of the Narnia series, this story will be enjoyable as well.  The hero of the story, goes on a quest to sek out truth and deliverance and is faced with the demons of his past, but also a series of choices as well- one of which is the delusion and allure of false religions-whereas just as in this world, many percieve various religions and believes as just one of many ways to attaining truth.  Modern and real life misconceptions are brought to life in a palatable, allegorical form , that may perhaps speak out to the secular and non religious reader as well as Christians.  Issues of justice, and injustice, human imperfection and sin are  addressed.  In fact, briefly, some of Alcorns philosophies and truths about injustice and suffering as well as its purpose are  woven into this story.  Even for those readers who do not neccessarily enjoy the symbolism of this story or the allegorical nature if this piece of work, will appreciate the biblical insights of wisdom.  Although it is obvious to any bible reader this allegory is based on Christian truths, this book may be an effective outreach method for those non Christian readers who are not religious- yet conscientious of spiritualism and philosophy and self introspection.
Within the text are simple child-like black and white illustrations- remeniscent of  cartoon or comic book art.  The end of this story includes some study questions which may shed light onto the specifics of the symbolism for those readers unfamiliar with the bible. As a blogger for Multnomah books I recieved a copy of this book for the purpose of writing this review.

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