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Man Against Messiah, The Sanhedrin Plot Against Jesus

Interior Cover photoI am very excited to announce my newest book, Man Against Messiah, The Sanhedrin Plot Against Jesus. It will be available exclusively on Amazon.com by September 30, 2018.  It will be available in Paperback for $14.99 or on all e-Book versions for $7.99. This book is 266 pages and filled with footnotes for references.

I spent about ten months researching and writing this book.  I love history and especially religious history.  A couple years ago, I wrote the outline for a book called, The Arm of The Flesh, a historical fiction that takes place in the first century in Jerusalem; the story of a young member of the Sanhedrin who becomes a believer in Jesus Christ.  I realized that to do the book justice, I would need to do a lot of research.  I would have to read every book I could get my hands on to really understand life at the time of a first century Jew, and member of the Sanhedrin living under the rule of Rome.

So I began to read, and read, and read.  Some of the books I read include, Killing Jesus, and The Last Days of Jesus, both by Bill O’Reilly, The Case for Jesus, by Brant Pitre. Zealot, by Reza Aslan, JESUS: Savior of the World, by James Snapp Jr., The Book of Enoch, Apocrapha, by Matthew A. Misbach, The Book of Jubilees, by Charles R.H., Old Testament Prophecies of Jesus Christ, by Earl C. Tingey,  Jesus of Nazareth, Savior And King, by Duane S. Crowther, Jesus the Christ, by James E. Talmage, and much of the Old and New Testament. As mentioned above, it took ten months to do the research for this book.

I surely don’t claim to be a religious scholar, just a lover of the history. I also read several American history books during this time. But nothing seemed to really prepare me for what I needed to write my book, The Arm of the Flesh. One day while searching the internet for a book on the Sanhedrin, everything changed when I came across a book called, Jesus Before the Sanhedrim, written in the early 1800’s by a French Catholic priest by the name of Augustus LeMann, who was born and raised a Jew, prior to converting to Catholicism at the age of 18. The book was translated into English in 1886 by Julius Magath, a professor at Emory College in Oxford, Georgia.

The book was a detailed history of the Sanhedrin and most of its members who presided over the trial of Jesus. I devoured the book. I was overwhelmed by the information that even gave names and specific information about most of the members of this group.  For me, this book was a gold mine, even an answer to prayers.

I recently acquired an 1886 English translation of the original French printing of Jesus Before the Sanhedrim (this was the spelling used in his English translation) and incorporated it into this publication to focus on the last days of Jesus.  He used many sources for his research, including the Talmud, the Tribunal of the Maccabees, the Greek text of the Gospels, by the historian Josephus, and in the rabbinical writings. I was particularly amazed at how most, but not all of those Sanhedrin judges in Israel, had no desire to find out if Jesus truly was the long sought-after Messiah and Son of God, as he claimed.

I decided to use Jesus Before the Sanhedrim as a centerpiece for my new book that would set the first century stage for the coming Messiah, by referring to the enormous mounds of religious history and prophesy contained in the Old Testament and scholarly works of the time, and then transition into Jesus Before the Sanhedrim, and then end the book with my own discussion of what happened at the Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus.

I re-edited Jesus Before the Sanhedrim, corrected the spelling to Sanhedrin, updated some of the words and sentence structure and retyped ALL of the numerous footnotes!  I call my book, Man Against Messiah, the Sanhedrin Plot Against Jesus.  Of course, I give Mr. LeMann complete credit for his brilliant book that now sits in the middle of mine. I know, this may seem odd, it initially seemed odd to me too. Until I realized that the only thing missing from his book was the story of what led up to the coming Messiah, and what happened after the Crucifixion.  I am very pleased with how my book turned out. And I am honored to share the story with Augustus LeMann.

In Man Against Messiah, the Sanhedrin Plot Against Jesus, I discuss the life and times of Jesus based on the Bible and the works of religious scholars, researchers, authors, and spiritual teachers. The focus of this book is to show how Jesus, through his teachings, caused the members of the Sanhedrin great concern, as his followers began to increase, much more than any other of the many “false” Messiah’s who had come before him. Jesus was different, unlike most of the others, he did not encourage an uprising against the Romans who had conquered Jerusalem in 63 B.C., his threat was against the evil leaders of the Jews, the Sanhedrin, those he referred to when he spoke of the Scribes and Pharisees. He threatened their power over the Jews by questioning their lack of understanding of the scriptures, their pompous and prideful and phony pious that exalted them above others, often including the angels and prophets of old; his teachings of love, compassion and forgiveness, and his miracles of healing the sick, giving sight to the blind, feeding thousands with a few fishes and loaves of bread, and raising Lazarus from the dead, began turning the people toward Jesus and away from the Sanhedrin.

I have learned much more about my savior, Jesus Christ. I am overwhelmed with love and gratitude for him and his selfless life of love, compassion, service, and sacrifice. Through this work, my testimony of him and his mission has grown enormously. Reading and studying about Jesus and his life has made me a better husband, father, grandfather, friend, and man. I am eternally grateful for him and our kind and gracious Father in Heaven.

My life experience has also given me the opportunity to make many, many wonderful friends all over the country. And my knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ tells me that we, as children of God are all family. And through the grace of God, I have been richly blessed with that that matters most and lasts forever, family.

 

I recently finished Bill O’Reilly’s new book, Killing England.

51CrQpRMotL._AA300_I love history, especially when it is not fused with revisionist opinions and hogwash. I have always been fascinated with American history regarding the founding of America and the battles that ensued. Although, I learned much about America’s history in school, the school history books never spend enough time on the major events in history.  The war for the independence of America was miraculous to say the least; an unprepared group of farmers, peasants and merchants took up arms and fought against the most seasoned and well-equipped army of the time.  The American colonies were no match for the brutal strength and sizable numbers of England.  Yet, somehow, through determination, tremendous fortitude and faith in God, these men (and women), though sustaining heavy losses of some of the most noble blood in American history, overcame the greatest of odds, and beat back England, and claimed freedom!

I have ancestors who fraught in the revolutionary war, on both sides; some were American colonists and others were sent from the homeland of England.   Mr. Reilly’s book doesn’t hold back on detail, including some uncomfortable detail about the lives of America’s most prominent founding fathers.

There were times during reading that I was uncomfortable hearing about the weakness and human nature of these great men, but it also helped put their humanity into perspective.  These men were not perfect, but they were no doubt led by the perfection of divine providence in their quest for American freedom.  I enthusiastically recommend this book to anyone who wants to experience a deeper understanding and learn about the terrifying experience of the events that helped create the United States of America.

 

Why I write historical fiction

I have had many of my readers ask why I write historical fiction, and not just history books.  This is a great question.  I love history, but like many, I sometimes read history books that tend to bog down my mind with too many details that keep me from enjoying the subject.  But when I read about an individual in history I cannot help but wonder who they were, what they were feeling, how others around them were being impacted, and what they were thinking about the very moment history was being made.

There are many great journals kept by prominent people in history, but unless they were very detailed and prolific in their journal entries, it doesn’t always tell the whole story.  I like putting a fictional character in a factual story to bring it to life.  It becomes more interesting to me when the character becomes the story, not the historical facts.

For me, it is much more interesting hearing a story or learning history when it revolves around a central character. But when I do this, I am very conscious about making sure I get my story and facts as accurate as possible. I want the reader to get so lost in the story that they believe my character really did exist, and really did play a part, or was a player in the history.

You will notice in Not Without Mercy The Black Death, that I introduce many real people of history, and I allow my characters to interact with them, maybe even being the person to help or encourage them to do the thing they did that actually made history.  An example of this is when William meets John Wycliffe in an English PUB in London.

During a casual conversation, William says something that inspires John Wycliffe to be the first to translate the Bible, (the Catholic Vulgate) into English. Now, was my Character William Beorn a real person who may have helped John Wycliffe decide to translate the Bible into English, or to start the Lollard movement that ushered in the beginning of the Great Reformation?  I don’t know, was he?  Either way, it sure makes the history come to life with a little bit of fiction, now doesn’t it?