Richey’s (Knowing the Gospel, 2011) latest work of nonfiction illustrates her devotion to Christianity and offers readers a deeper insight into the Gospels.
Careful research and a devotion to her faith shape Richey’s latest endeavor, which she offers as a means for readers to become better acquainted with the teachings of Jesus Christ. The book chronologically follows the way in which civilization anticipated and experienced the incarnation of Jesus as a man, through his childhood and three years of active teaching before his crucifixion. Richey diligently includes documentation from several different Bibles to support her theologies. However, while the multiple citations are meant to supply readers with a deeper understanding of significant passages in the Bible, they often confuse Richey’s interpretations. The strongest components of this text are Richey’s commitments to her faith and to sharing with readers a closer understanding of Jesus’ life. Yet choosing to quote the same passage from various versions of the Bible leaves little room for a reader to bring his or her own impression to the work. For example, Richey will open many paragraphs with a statement—i.e., “As a prophet, Jesus preached or spoke God’s word and performed miracles like the great Old Testament prophets”—followed by quotes from different Bibles as supporting text, all the while rarely pointing out anything specific that readers could use to further analyze the argument or hold as evidence of its thesis. A person of faith will find the cross-referencing valuable if interested in multiple versions of religious texts, but the technique comes up short as a means of educating the lay reader.
Best for readers already familiar with and fascinated by Jesus’ life.