The Kingdom and the Crown

Grandma gave me a 3 book series called The Kingdom and the Crown probably about 4 years ago. I'm not sure why, but for some reason it took me until about 2 months ago to start reading them. The books are historical fiction and the story takes place around 30 AD, during the time of Christ. They are written by Gerald Lund, who wrote the series The Work and the Glory. I read and loved The Work and the Glory (all NINE volumes), but I loved these books even more.

Let me tell you something - I spent a year in seminary learning about the New Testament, I took a whole class on it at BYU (which I got an A in), and I've spent multiple years learning about it in Sunday School at church. I think it goes without saying that I'm very familiar with all of the stories and events that occurred during Christ's ministry on earth. Yet it wasn't until reading this series that everything finally fell into place and really made sense. Now I see how all of the pieces fit together, why certain events were so significant and the meanings behind some of the events that I didn't fully understand previously.

Reports of Jesus of Nazareth have reached the ears of David ben Joseph, a merchant in Capernaum, who has waited and watched for the Messiah ever since a special, starlit night thirty years before. He and his family decide to see for the themselves whether or not the rumors are true. Though David is quick to accept Jesus as the Messiah, the rest of his family is more cautious. His wife, Deborah, and his son, Simeon, leaders in the Zealot movement, look for a Messiah that will crush the Romans with power and the sword, not one preaching a message of love and forgiveness. Meanwhile, reports of Jesus have reached into the very heart of Jerusalem, and both the powerful Sadducee Mordechai ben Uzziel and the Pharisee Azariah are growing uneasy with the news. Though they hold opposing political views, both agree that something must be done to stop this man from Nazareth before he gets out of hand.

I absolutely recommend this series to everyone, Christian or not, but especially if you're interested in understanding the New Testament better. The great part about the books is that you are learning without even trying while reading the story. The storyline about the family is really good and keeps you interested (there were some parts I couldn't set the book down) and at the same time you're learning so many things about the culture, the traditions and the beliefs of the people in Jerusalem and the surrounding areas that you probably never knew about before. At the end of each chapter the author will elaborate on some of the events and add in comments by scholars or point out interesting pieces of information that the reader might be interested in. For example at the end of one chapter he said, "Certain traditions have become so fixed in Christianity that they have taken on the stature of scripture. An example of this is the idea that three wise men came to Bethlehem to visit the Babe; in actuality, Matthew does not specify a number."

Now, I want to visit the Holy Land more than ever before.

3 Response to The Kingdom and the Crown

July 27, 2011 at 12:11 AM

great review! now i feel like i should read it...but i'm just wondering, when am i gonna get to hear your thoughts on 11 minutes!?!?!? lol jk jk jk ;)

July 29, 2011 at 12:33 AM

That's so awesome Lauren.. now I'm thinking of reading it too. Hope all is well with you. love your blog;)

October 12, 2011 at 8:37 PM

These have always been my FAVORITE book series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE THAT YOU READ THIS!!!!!!!!!! I love those books, and wanted to be Miriam with the two hot guys fighting for her hahahaha.

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