Friday, May 19, 2017

The Twelfth Imam ★★★☆½

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 Title: The Twelfth Imam
 Series: ------
 Author: Joel Rosenberg
 Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
 Genre: Christian Thiller
 Pages: 501
 Format: Digital Edition


Iran gets the Nuke. And at the same time, the fabled Twelfth Imam appears and begins working miracles. His goal is an Islamic Caliphate. That is The End.

We work up to that by following a young man affected by September 11 who vows to become a CIA agent so he can catch and bring to justice Bin Laden. At the same time we follow another young man, an Iranian, who is a genius and meets incarnations of the Iman through his growing up years, all in preparation to control a military nuclear weapon and the facilities needed to create such a thing.

Lots of clandestine'y things, very spy novel. Then BAM, the 12th Imam appears to the leader of Iran, takes over, takes over Saudi Arabia and threatens the world with 10 nuclear weapons if they don't let him do what he wants. But at the same time he's appearing all over the Middle East healing people and performing miracles.

Several of the characters meet Jesus and begin to realize that the 12th Imam is an agent of the devil, hence his power AND his threats.

My Thoughts:

I don't read many spy thrillers, so when I do read one, it's all brand new territory for me and I don't have any experience to rely on. I enjoyed this book. There was a lot of character creation going on and this time around it worked for me. Sometimes that type of thing bores me, but not this time.

From a Christian perspective, and certainly from a 7th Day Adventist perspective, this fits right in to End Times theology. Adventists believe [in very broad terms here] that in the Last Days, Catholics, Protestants and Muslims will all unite into one Feel Good, Love Everybody group that will deny, by their uniting, the Divinity & Authority of Jesus Christ and the Unalloyed Sovereignty of God [Jesus will be a Good Man and the Pope will be God's Voice, with all of His Authority, on Earth]. The particulars of this book are a bit out of date, as Bin Laden is wormfood. However, considering that I just read an article about the Lutherans and the Catholics trying to make nicey-nice and claiming Luther just “misunderstood” a few things 500 years ago and that there is a concerted effort to create harmony between the major Theistic religions [I've heard it called “ChrIslam”], I hesitate to call such views crackpot theories any more.

The ending was COMPLETELY open ended, but any other way would bog itself down in specific End Times theories. Those things can get messy and very ugly, very quickly. I'm just as happy he didn't try to write out his pet theory, as I probably would have disagreed and then ended the book on a sour note.

Rosenberg includes a lot of quotes from the Qu'ran but without a lot of context, I am hesitant to place very much weight on them. Kind of like those Hollywood movies where the Evil Cult Leader quotes 1 Bible verse and suddenly he's the Token Christian representing all of Christianity in the movie even while being the complete antithesis of an actual Christian. But enough was quoted to show that Rosenberg had done some homework and not just googled “Jihad, Qu'ran” and slap dashed in the first thing that came up. What he does quote is very rather damning though.

To end on a completely different note, I've read other books by a “Joel Rosenberg”, which were fantasy books and honestly, not that good. I'd always assumed that THIS Rosenberg was also THAT Rosenberg. However, upon investigation, THIS Rosenberg is Joel “C” Rosenberg and is an American. The OTHER Rosenberg is just plain Joel Rosenberg and he's Canadian.
Score One for America!
Score One for Nationalism!
Score One for Irony! [my dad's Canadian and I was born there]


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