Review by Lynnette Christensen


This book recommendation comes from Lynnette Christensen of the McKay School's Center for the Improvement of Teacher Education and Schooling (CITES). Her reading philosophy is that “even though we often get so busy and it’s difficult to find time to read, a good book is a like a good friend, and we should always make time for good friends.” When Christensen began graduate school, she promised herself that despite the academic work and increased stress, she would not give up on her own recreational reading. “I am so grateful I have made time to read what I want to read,” she said.

When most hear the name Ben Hur, images of Charlton Heston racing a chariot through ancient Roman streets immediately pop into their minds. Few know the film was based on an 1880 novel written by Lew Wallace, titled Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ.

The story is about a young Jewish aristocrat in Rome, Judah Ben Hur, who is falsely accused and betrayed by his childhood friend. At the same time Judah is sentenced to a life of slavery, in another land the three Wise Men begin their search for the newborn Savior. The story of the betrayed friend and the Savior of the world progress in parallel and occasionally cross paths, providing many gospel applications for the reader. While the film is made for the spectacle of Hollywood, the novel takes time to meditate on faith, forgiveness, and overcoming adversity.