BOOK REVIEW: Learn something new this Christmas. We hate to admit it, but after reading the same Luke 2 story of Christmas for years--or even decades--we get a little bored. That's why The Characters of Christmas was written, to help you take a fresh look at the Christmas story by getting to know all the characters who played a part in Jesus' birth.
As you slow down, engage your imagination, and enter into the stories of these men and women, you'll see the most important character--Jesus Christ--with new eyes. And with discussion questions and a Christmas song suggestion at the end of each chapter, it's perfect for engaging your whole family.
MY REVIEW: When I got this book I expected it to be about those characters we know little about, revealing more details about them. But it wasn't, and that was a good thing. The reason we don't know much about these characters such as Simeon, Anna, and the Wise Men, is because so little was recorded about them. Therefore we cannot find a book that reveals indepth looks at them. Rather, this book showed how each character, however insignificant or unimportant, was selected by God to point to His Son, Jesus.
Each character in this book points to Jesus' birth. They also display something about surrender to God, even before personal relationships with Him were a thing. Take Joseph for example. He gave up more than we realize when he remained loyal to an unmarried pregnant woman. Such a thing would surely have destroyed his character. And Mary herself took on much ridicule and censor. The shepherds and wise men are another example. They had obviously heard the prophecies, and unlike the religious men who knew every word inside out and backwards, these men believed and traveled to see their Messiah.
Another focus near the end of the book, is that of Jesus' earthly family. Not every one of His earthly ancestors are shining beacons, yet God included them, and often brought good through them. He didn't exclude those who sinned, lost their way, or were looked down on by men. God is no respecter of persons, and His earthly family proves that. To quote from the book, "Jesus has come for outsiders and the sinner, the outcast and the powerless. In a word, He has come for you." No one is exempt from the love of God.
I enjoyed reading a book like this throughout the month of December. It made Christmas more front and central. It also reminded me that everyone included in Jesus' birth and every Christian since then and today, points to God.
I recieved a copy of this book from MOODY PRESS and was not required to write a positive review.