on 9 January 2010
Feminine from the beginning, a delight of aesthetically pleasing drawings and words, artistically crafted together with colour. Not what I might have expected from a Bible study! Beth draws you in like sharing a bottle of wine with a friend. The story of Esther is intriguing, action packed,and sensual. Beth shares all the gritty gossip of this ancient celebrity. She encourages your learning with modern comparisions. This book is full of detail which unpick and makes clear each precious verse. She doesn't spare the punches!
on 3 February 2012
The book of Esther is a wonderful example of God's providence, but I can not recommend Beth Moore's study because her writing is flowery, over gilded and in my opinion detracts from any bible teaching. Beth Moore's writing style would be better suited to a Mills and Boon book. A few examples, `A plot so thick that it became a royal stew,' (page 24). `Determined to milk the cow of celebrity gossip dry,' (page 35). `Xerxes and Esther paired on the dance floor of splendid drama; their words tap-dancing back and forth,' (page 161). `A divine visitation graced our cold, crude winter and the resurrection of spring is on its way,' (page 132). `Levity and aloofness twirled like ghostly dance mates on palace floors,' (page 87). `Favour flows her way like ink on a thirsty page,' (page 42). `Butterflies in your stomach have become vultures,' (page 47). 'Esther swept a king off his feet and a crown off its stand,' (page 50). `A conviction that throbbed relentlessly against my strong self-centeredness,' (page 98). `The dust kicked up by the messengers spun like dirt devils all over Persia,' (page 29). `To dip ourselves in the bubble bath of a second's bliss when it comes,' (page 194). `Lean our heads back in the sunshine of our soul's Sabbath and take a minute to feel the glad emotion,' (page 194). `Taking a quick plunge into the turbulent waters of the human psyche,' (page 142). `That day in Haman's home, he slid from wine to Whine,' (page 124). `Maybe she refused to get her toes tangled in their back-combed hair on her climb to the top,' (page 49).
Her constant use of alliteration is irksome and I did not appreciate being referred to as `girlfriend', `Darling one', `Beloved', `Dear One' and `Sweet one'! I was surprised by her unbiblical attitude, `even someone I despise,' (page 145) - Jesus asks us to love our enemies! `A soul has a health-need to know that justice will be served' - Jesus asks us to forgive absolutely! Beth Moore describes a dinner party hosted by a `gorgeous and at the risk of causing bitterness, godly wife of a professional athlete.' Why would anyone feel `bitter' because God has blessed a Christian?
On page 17 Beth Moore demonstrates hypocrisy by recounting a time she visited `an "Oh!" kind of home'. Beth Moore says she has been in, `some beautiful homes,' but `never in my life seen anything like that one.' Apparently, the Holy Spirit showed up otherwise Beth Moore says, `I don't think I could have picked up my jaw enough to utter an intelligible word.' Then just before leaving this house her `good-humoured host; amused by our poorly hidden giddiness; knew she'd send us over the edge by asking, "Would you girls like to see my closet?" Beth Moore and her co-worker `nearly jumped out of our pumps. Oh the shoes! Oh, the purses! Oh, the capris!' Beth Moore writes several paragraphs describing how impressed she was by the opulent wealth of this `gorgeous, godly wife' then immediately criticises King Xerxes for throwing a party to display his own glory and goes on to say that `Xerxes didn't earn an ounce of his fortune.'!
I found the questions asked throughout this bible study so banal I gave up reading them! I learnt nothing new about Esther, but rather too much about Beth Moore's insecurities. She seems to be obsessed with outward appearance and being liked by other women, but at least she is honest and admits that she is `woefully rich in all things self' (page 212) and `emotionally handicapped' (page 148). Beth Moore's personal struggles and failings dominate and frankly spoil this bible study. I agree with her comment, `insecure people with big positions and bigger egos are exhausting' (page 149). Beth Moore completely failed to engage me in this bible study. All I learnt is that she finds it tough being a woman! To conclude this desperately slow bible study Beth Moore asks, `What have you savoured most about our nine-week journey?' Well, it took us three weeks to complete this study and I can honestly say getting to the end is what I savoured most!