Conversion of a Vicious Roman Centurion
by Rev. Martin Francis Edior and Ethelinda Edior
LitFire Publishing

"A vicious Roman Soldier became a Christian Soldier preaching the doctrines of Christ with supreme power."

The first question a reader will want to be answered is in the title of Chapter 1: Who was this Roman Centurion? The authors have found a thought-provoking approach to telling the life story of the man who became known as the Apostle Paul. Using text from the Acts of the Apostles, they have created the persona of a cruel Roman who was miraculously converted to Christianity. The eight remaining chapters bring to life the facts behind Paul’s writing of these New Testament books: 1 and 2 Timothy, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians, and 1 and 2 Thessalonians.

In the Ediors’ book, a reader can vicariously experience the amazement felt by Timothy (as well as the early Christians of the churches the letters were written to) when Paul’s words were read for the first time. An issue not addressed is whether the Saul mentioned early in Acts who trained at the feet of a Jerusalem rabbi is indeed the same person as the Apostle Paul. If true, this would account for the theology he taught so well.

To their credit, the authors avoid putting their viewpoint into the historical novel format, leaving the focus solely on this great hero of the faith. Their short book is well-written with a good flow linking portions of scripture together. Some insufficient editing in the first chapter is slightly distracting but does not detract from the overall strength of the book. Novelty is an excellent tactic to draw even Bible scholars into reading the account with fresh eyes, and this new slant to the story should prove welcome to the religious community.

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