“Beyond the Flesh” by James W. Murphy

I was somewhat disappointed with this book.  The “cover blurb” said that it was about Michael (the archangel) and the fall of Satan and the affects on both history and Michael himself.

It was, but the style was completely not what I expected.  It sounded like the way I would tell the story to my children, or perhaps an unbeliever, complete with little explanations of things that seemed evident.  Also, the author’s descriptions of well, anything, didn’t capture my imagination.  The tone was very straightforward and in parts had the feel of a tract.  There were several points which could be considered controversial, as well: such as that Micheal punched a certain rock to aid in the division of the earth, or that Michael was, not only, one of the angels present at the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, but that they used precisely hurled asteroids to destroy the cities, (and then there was the claim that at Jesus’ death there was a great battle in heaven; all the demons were captured and their wings were chopped off, and they were hurled back to earth–what’s up with that?).

I am not exactly sure who I could recommend this book to.  It is too simplistic for most Christians, too preachy at points for non-Christians, and too inaccurate for me to read to my children.  It had a couple good points, but not any that one couldn’t come up with after a few minutes thought.

I don’t like to be so negative about a book…I think I am harsher with “Christianese” type books (God “loved on” the angels, and they “loved on” Him???).  Or perhaps I’m just a bit too cynical.  Read it for yourselves and let me know! 


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