Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Angels in the Bible

Written by Elaine Murray Stone and Cathy Gustavson, Angels in the Bible begins with an introduction that seeks to answer basic doctrinal questions about angels. Such as:
  • What are angels?
  • Are they male or female?
  • Are they always good?
  • When were angels created?
  • Are there different kinds of angels?
  • Where did the idea of angels originate?
  • Do we worship angels?
  • Where do we get our information about angels?
After answering these questions, the authors retell the major Bible stories in which angels appear. The twenty-three chapters are divided into two sections: Old Testament and New Testament. They cover familiar stories -- such as Jacob's Ladder, the Fiery Furnace, and Mary, the mother of Jesus -- and stories less familiar to children -- such as Hagar, Zechariah, and John's Revelation.

Simple line drawings by Frank Sabatte provide occasional illustrations. Completely in black and white, they feature pen and ink style with cross-hatching techniques.

What I Like:
This title clearly seeks to eliminate myths about angels and replace those beliefs with accurate information founded on the Bible. I especially appreciate the emphatic assertion that we are not to worship angels. The book is very well organized. I like that the chapters are short and that each includes references for further study. If kids want to know more, they know exactly where to look.

What I Dislike:
I don't like the illustrations at all. They lack detail and are just odd and distracting. Fortunately, there aren't many of them, just one for each three- to four-page chapter.

More importantly, the introduction, which covers doctrine of angels, is quite ecumenical. That is to say the text equally considers beliefs, traditions and sacred texts from different denominations and religions. It combines sources from Judaism, Catholicism, Protestantism and Islam. Because of this, the information provided is noncommittal and may be considered biblically inaccurate by some. PLEASE NOTE: this criticism is only of the introduction. Reason concludes that the book is built upon the introductory doctrine, but I didn't notice this problem throughout the chapters. The main text consistently follows beliefs set forth by the Roman Catholic Church.

Overall Rating:

Age Appeal:

Publisher Info:
Paulist Press, 2006; ISBN: 0809167298; Paperback; 80 pages; $7.95

Buy it Now
Amazon.com for $7.95!

Special Info:
This title makes a wonderful resource specifically for Roman Catholic believers. You may also be interested in our reviews of other books by this author and our reviews of other books about angels.

Bookmark and Share

No comments: