About the Book:
Book: The Last Disciple: Crisis in Jerusalem
Author: Kurt Brouwer
Genre:Christian Historical Fiction
Release date: November 18, 2022
He was the Beloved Disciple…
…and he would be the last.
The mantle to tell the whole story has fallen on him.
From the cross, Jesus entrusted John, the youngest disciple, with the welfare of Mary, Jesus’s mother. Over thirty years later, as Jerusalem becomes a cauldron of explosive tempers, he receives a calling he doesn’t want.
Will he listen and follow?
And if he does, will it be too late?
In 62 AD, the Jewish high priest executes James, the brother of Jesus, triggering a bitter fight for power in Jerusalem that shatters the quiet life of John. The Jewish people he loves are making dangerous choices that will change the land of Israel forever.
Should he stay in Jerusalem and help hold off the Roman onslaught? Or is it time to reach out to those beyond Israel’s borders?
If he chooses to leave, what will be his message to these foreign believers? What new words of comfort could he possibly share?
Set against a backdrop of actual events, The Last Disciple: Crisis in Jerusalem is the first novel in a new series based on the Bible and Christian history.
Follow along while John faces multiple crises and comes to understand what it is to stand alone and lean on only the Lord.
Your heart will embrace The Last Disciple: Crisis in Jerusalem because John’s story is the story of our hope and promise.
When I read the description of this book, it sounded like one I would be interested in. I’m always a little wary of Biblical fiction, because quite often I have found books in this genre not accurate. I have come across some really good ones, though, so I was hoping this one would be. Rereading the description now, I see that I missed one phrase that would have clued me in that I would not be interested in this one. One line in the description says that John had to decide about helping “hold off the Roman onslaught”. Several times in the story, both John and Bartholomew either defend themselves or talk about defending themselves from physical harm threatened against them. John carried a staff to protect himself, and used it. At the same time, he occasionally thought about Jesus’ words about loving his enemies. These two attitudes do not go together. If you read the Bible carefully, and if you read early Christian records, you’ll see that the early Christians did not believe in self defence. Because of this, I cannot recommend this book. That makes me sad, because it is a period of history I would love to read more about. As far as the basic storyline, it was quite interesting to try to imagine the early Christian world this way, through the eyes of one of the disciples, who was travelling around to encourage the church. On the other hand, the writing style didn’t work very well for me. There are frequent incomplete sentences, and the punctuation made it difficult to tell who is speaking. So, while I appreciated this author’s attempt to bring to life the history of a tumultuous time in Jewish history, I won’t be reading any more in the series.
I received a review copy of this book from the author, and these are my honest thoughts about it. Links may be affiliate links, which will benefit Esther’s website if purchases are made through them.
About the Author:
Kurt is a Christian writer, living in Hawaii. A few years ago he did a study at his church on the Apostle John. That little project got him hooked on the man who started out life as a fisherman and then became a disciple of Christ.
The more he learned, the more he wanted to know. What did John do after the Crucifixion? Why did he wait so long to write the Gospel of John? Where did he live for the last 60 years of his life? This historical novel came out of the research he did to answer those questions.
He started a blog (KurtBrouwer.com) a few years ago. On it he has written over 100 blog posts and a few Christian booklets.
Now he’s working on Book Two in this series. The Last Disciple: Escape to Antioch takes up where Book One ends. The Last Disciple is a Christian historical novel that introduces you to John, the last disciple of Christ.
More from Kurt:
About 85 AD, more than fifty years after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Gospel of John struck the Christian world like a lightning bolt out of a clear blue sky. At that time, few Christians even knew that one of the disciples yet lived. After all the years, decades even, a new book of the Bible came out, written by the last disciple of Christ.
WHO WAS THE LAST DISCIPLE?
John the son of Zebedee walked with Jesus during his ministry on earth. He witnessed the Crucifixion and later entered the empty tomb after Jesus rose from the grave.
John, the youngest of the disciples, outlived all the others. In fact, John, the last disciple of Christ, lived for more than 60 years after Jesus died on the Cross. But who was he? And what did he do all those years? Where did he live? With whom? What do we know of him and his life?
THE YOUNGEST DISCIPLE…
John walked with Jesus when he was young, probably a teenager or very early 20s. He and Andrew were the first discples of Christ. John lived so long that he became the last disciple too.
A FEW DETAILS ABOUT JOHN
- The son of Zebedee, his father, and Salome, his mother
- Brother to the disciple James
- Possibly a cousin to Jesus through his mother
- A fisherman on the Sea of Galilee
- He and his brother James were friends and even fishing buddies with Peter and his brother Andrew
- Almost certainly the youngest of the 12 disciples
I GOT HOOKED (PUN INTENDED) ON JOHN EARLY ONE MORNING
One morning I read a short piece from BibleGateway.com by Jonathan Petersen, When Was Each Book of the Bible Written? In it, Petersen gave the approximate dates when all the New Testament books came out. The first, written by James the brother of Jesus, came out around 44 AD or as late as 49 AD. The most widely accepted year for the Crucifixion is 33 AD, so the first book did not come out for at least 11 years after Christ died.
The next New Testament book to come out was Paul’s letter to the Galatians, around 49 AD. After that came the gospels of Mark and Matthew. Other books such as Luke, Acts, and all of Paul’s letters came along in fairly short order. Peter’s two letters came out and then the book of Jude, about 68-70 AD. Then, for at least 10-20 years, no new Bible books came out.
The silence was broken
Finally, the silence was broken. After all the years, decades even, the words of one who walked with Jesus came forth. The Gospel of John came out written by a man who saw the empty tomb after Jesus rose. A man who would write five books of the Bible:
- The Gospel of John 80-90 AD
- The Letters or Epistles of John 90-95 AD
- The Book of Revelation 95-98 AD
A UNIQUE VOICE CAME FORTH
As John’s gospel spread from church to church, a unique voice came forth. What a miracle that must have been to first century Christians when the Gospel of John appeared!
That’s it for now. We will continue with more in future posts on the saga of the last disciple of Christ.
Yours in Christ, Kurt
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