Bethlehem to Bethany - Jack Strahan
Hardback, 192 pages, Published by Scripture Teaching Library, Cookstown, Northern Ireland.
From the title alone one might consider this book to deal with familiar places in the earthly life of the Lord Jesus. In that sense, the assumption is accurate. The author does indeed cover places such as Bethlehem, Bethabara, Bethsaida, Bethesda, Bethphage, and Bethany. However, these ‘Stepping Stones on the Saviour’s earthly pathway’, as the author describes them, are covered in a very distinct way. Weaving the historical background, the present geography, illustrated with photographs and diagrams, and the biblical record of each place, the writer provides us with some choice and heart-warming material, all from the pen of one who has visited Israel on many occasions.
As the number of scriptural references varies, so the writer spends different amounts of space on each place. Equally, for those not familiar with the physical geography of Israel, Strahan seeks to paint a mental picture of the landscape in which the Saviour moved, as well as providing photographs of its present layout. This is all-important preparation for the consideration of the characters and events associated with each town or city. Seldom has this reviewer read devotional material of such quality. It is difficult to pick out examples but Strahan’s comment on the healings of the Lord Jesus, pages 84 and 85, was particularly choice. As David Gilliland says in his comments on the back cover, the reader will be ‘treated to a rich feast of meditations on the Person and Work of the Lord Jesus reflecting years of in-depth study and intimate appreciation of the Saviour’. This book is highly recommended.