Want to read a real thriller? Killing Jesus: A History by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard.
When you were a kid, did you attend Sunday School and Summer Bible School? If you did, I’m sure you memorized bible verses, memorized the list of the books of the bible, read and re-read the story of Jesus. You probably heard and read those stories so many times they just became ordinary, routine, bland.
Well, not anymore. Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard have brought the stories back to life. With deep historical insights into the times we can have a new appreciation of what was really happening then: the political situations of Rome, the struggles of the ordinary people, the relationship between Rome and Israel, what it meant to defy authority. We see Herod taking the rumors of a new messiah, a new King, very seriously…so seriously he condemns to death all baby boys in the area.
Jesus has grown up in a strongly religious family and community, with regular pilgrimages to Jerusalem. At age 30 he is one of many being baptized by John the Baptist. He speaks to crowds. He gathers disciples. He declares himself, performs miracles, and predicts his own death.
Chapter after chapter, we have a countdown to how long Jesus has to live. He becomes more and more popular, preaching to huge crowds. His disciples expect a revolt against Rome with Jesus becoming a King, but this is not what happens.
No matter that we all know what happens…this book is a page turner. I highly recommend it to everyone.