Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

I was very interested in this book, because I’ve never thought about a fiction story that’s based on a Bible story – I always think of the Bible stories as being stories on their own, with no real need to embellish them or expound on them.  Well, maybe that’s not completely true…. I do wonder a lot about the details that aren’t shared, things that make it clear that the Bible was written by men and not by women.  =-)  But I’ve never wanted to “modernize” the Bible, I enjoy it like it is.  That really made me think that this book would be interesting, because it allowed me the ability to think about the story of Hosea (the prophet) and Gomer in terms that made it seem more real, and not just a story in the Bible.  For those who don’t know the Bible story, Gomer was a prostitute, and Hosea was a prophet.  God had Hosea marry Gomer, and their relationship was indicative of the relationship that God was having with His people.  It definitely was not the best relationship ever, at least not in the early stages, and God forgave His people and their many “indiscretions” much like Hosea continued to forgive Gomer.  It wasn’t easy for Hosea to do, but God kept telling Him to take his wife back – and he always did.  God does the same thing with us, even in the small things we do wrong, He always takes us back.  What a beautiful picture this book painted of the love our Father has for each of us – no matter what we do!

This book is really thought-provoking.  It makes you think about a familiar story in a completely different way.  I think that most of us struggle to understand some of the Old Testament stories, mainly because the context is hard to fully grasp for us in modern times.  But this book made the story of Gomer and Hosea come alive in a totally different way for me, and made it impossible not to consider how the story from the Old Testament has lessons that are still relevant to us today.

At the end of the book, the author included a guide for reader’s groups, and it’s really great.  I would definitely enjoy participating in a group that read this book together, and answered the questions that are part of the guide!  This version of the book is the 20th anniversary edition, and I had never heard of it before, but you can be sure that I am going to want to hold onto it and consider it as an option for a study at some point!

I absolutely recommend this book, wholeheartedly.  I did receive a free copy of this book from the publisher, in exchange for my honest review.  The thoughts and opinions expressed here are completely my own.

 

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