Thursday, December 24, 2009

A Not-So-Silent Night by Verlyn Verbrugge

Christmas is a time for peace on earth, a time for favorite carols, family dinners, and familiar traditions. It’s about a beautiful story of a lovely babe in the manger. Or is it?

A Not-So-Silent Night is a revolutionary book that reveals the darker side of Christmas, a side that exposes pain, humiliation, fear, and danger. Though we usually choose to ignore them, these elements—in their cultural and historical context—reveal the true meaning of Christmas where the shadow of the cross is inseparable from the manger. Author Verlyn Verbrugge maintains that until we see the dark side of Christmas, until we shed tears with Mary and Joseph, until we experience the fear that war is on the horizon, we will never truly understand the awesomeness of what happened in that little town of Bethlehem. Timely and provocative, A Not-So-Silent Night is perfect for pastors looking for a new approach to their traditional Christmas sermons and for anyone who wants to get past holiday commercialization and get back to the reason for the season.

This is not your average Christmas book. The author takes a look at the darker side of

Christmas - what it was like for Mary and Joseph to face people's reactions to her out-o

f-wedlock pregnancy, the slaughter of the baby boys in Bethlehem, and even had an interesting take on the no room in the inn situation.

This book isn't what you'd call light reading, but I found it informative, interesting, and gave me some new insights into the Christmas story.

About the author:

Verlyn Verbrugge (PhD, Notre Dame) was a full-time pastor before becoming senior editor of academic and professional books at Zondervan. He has authored and contributed to several books, including Early Church History and Your Church Sign.

A Not-So-Silent night is available from Kregel Publishing.

Thanks to Kregel for the review copy.