Sunday, April 2, 2017

Review: Bearing Witness: Stories of Martyrdom and Costly Discipleship

Bearing Witness: Stories of Martyrdom and Costly Discipleship Bearing Witness: Stories of Martyrdom and Costly Discipleship by Charles E. Moore
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Brief, but emotionally moving accounts of persecution and martyrdom from the Biblical account of Stephen's martyr to Anabaptist persecutions and martyrdoms in Nigeria under Boko Haram. Included are five accounts, out of 36 stories, of persecution and martyrdom in the United States from the late 1700's to the mid-1900's.

This book is a good introduction the the reality of Christian suffering and bear witness not only to the depths of cruel violence men will inflict upon others, but the courage that graces those under persecution committed to their Christian faith and, especially in many stories involving Anabaptists, the depth and strength of conviction to non-violence as taught and exemplified by Christ in the Gospels.

I found that the introduction to this book was honest in dealing with the complexity of human nature in the face of persecution and martyrdom. Especially insightful is where we read, "At their best, martyr stories help communities validate their own cultural identity. At their worst, these memories can serve to justify resentment of one group against another and even lead to retribution."

An excellent read that will not only cause you to examine your faith but question the nature of your love for enemies.

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