Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Ecclesiastical History of the English People by Bede - Book 27 of 52 in 52

The Ecclesiastical History of the English People by Bede is the well known work concerning the expansion of  the gospel among the English.  While I confess that there were portions of the text that were a bit dry, overall I enjoyed this selection much more than I expected.  It contains tales of brave Christian kings, faithful monks, and Christian martyrs.  Despite the outward threats of barbarians and the inward threats of heresy, the gospel of Christ was proclaimed and advanced through the land.  There are portions such as the tales of miracles relating to the bodies of saints or the constant arguments over how to properly calculate the date of Easter that seem odd to our own day.  To Bede the miracles are grounded in his belief in the resurrection, a promise of a greater resurrection to come.  His emphasis on church unity should give any modern day Christian pause in our time of fractured denominations and conflicting beliefs.  It definitely deserves its place among the great books.

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