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I’ve read 44 books this year so far, and I’m current with my read through the Bible in a year plan. I don’t read much fiction, as I often consider it a waste of time when there are so many fascinating true or educational book out there. However, I should read more fiction as there is value in it!

I recently read a fiction book entitled The Robe by Lloyd Douglas. Before someone recently lent it to me, I’d never heard of it. The book was a best-seller back in the 1940’s, and was made into a movie in 1953. The copy lent to me was antique, which I loved! Sometimes it is nice to have a new, modern edition of an old book, but other times reading an antique copy adds to the reading experience somehow! At least for me. How about you?

The Robe is historical Christian fiction that is biblically and historically accurate, but weaves a fascinating fiction story about the Roman soldier that is in charge of the garrison at the crucifixion of Jesus. Marcellus (the Roman soldier) won Christ’s robe as a gambling prize – thus the title of the book. The book also follows the life of Marcellus’ Greek slave named Demetrius. Around 400 pages long, it is a detailed book but I found the story engaging and had no problem completing it.

Both Marcellus and Demetrius spent a great deal of time after the crucifixion carefully investigating the new Christian faith and the claims being made by Christ’s followers – that Christ had come back to life and had performed many miracles during His time on earth. Marcellus in particular, not prone to superstition, was skeptical. This aspect of the story reminded me that faith is always a challenge. We might think that being alive back then, with the ability to interview eye witnesses to Christ’s miracles and resurrection, would make faith easier. Not really. Marcellus, being the thinking type, initially found the stories hard to believe and he came up with rational explanations for some of the miracles. Yet, some could not be explained away and many of the eye-witnesses were compelling.  Marcellus (and Demetrius) both end up becoming followers of Jesus. It is a touching story of redemption that a soldier directly involved in Christ’s death ends up becoming a believer in Him as the unique Son of God and savior of humanity from sin.

I recommend this book to you. Have you read it? It truly encouraged me and helped the early years of Christianity come to life. Speaking of miracles, I need to review the soon to be released book Miracles by Eric Metaxas. I obtained a pre-release copy and finished it several days ago.

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