John Lennox is professor of Mathematics at Oxford, yet he offers us a commentary on the Old Testament book of Daniel as an encouragement for Christians everywhere to continue to stand “against the flow” of today’s secular age. Lennox has debated Richard Dawkins, and is known for his books integrating faith and science. He is an old-earth creationist and well versed in the philosophical debates which threaten the faith in our age. His new book Against the Flow: The Inspiration of Daniel in an Age of Relativism (Monarch Books, 2015) is a popular-level reflection on the book of Daniel that is both inspiring and challenging.
The book is not a detailed exegetical commentary on the text of Daniel. Instead it is more of a social commentary, drawing lessons from Daniel’s day and drawing parallels with our own age of skepticism and secularism. The book is replete with quotes from philosophers and news articles, ancient Near-Eastern texts and a vareity of other works. Pictures play a large role, and are interspersed in the text and also found in a full color insert section in the middle.
Lennox writes with British humor, at times, and with a scientist’s mind on the text. His exegetical insights are not profound, but he brings out the big picture realities that flow from the text. This is not a science and faith title, necessarily. It is about the Biblical book of Daniel. But there are lessons to be drawn that apply to the science debate and others. He offers some techincal resources and includes several appendices. And while he does defend the faith and the historicity of Daniel, that is not the book’s primary purpose. This is written to inspire believers to stand firm for their Christian faith in an age of secularism. We haven’t faced the lions in our Western society quite yet, but Daniel has much to offer us as to how to influence the culture while standing true to our faith.
This book is not a simple read, and its message is not light. It offers a challenge to our faith and an encouragement at the same time. I hope it will find a wide readership.
“Few parts of Scripture are more conscious of the clash between the wisdom of God and the wisdom of the world than the Old Testament book of Daniel. Few authors today are more expert at analysing and articulating both than John Lennox. It is a masterful combination, and the result is extraordinary.”
—John Dickson, Founding Director, Centre for Public Christianity; Senior Research Fellow, Department of Ancient History, Macquarie University; Author, A Doubter’s Guide to the Bible
“This book is an outstanding example of our responsibility both to understand God’s Word and the culture in which we live, and then to make the connections between the two. John Lennox is uniquely gifted to help us do this, as he addresses the big themes of God’s work in history, the place of morality, the nature of humankind, the challenges to faith, the trustworthiness of scripture, and the call to proclaim the truth whatever the cost. As a Bible teacher, a scientist, and a courageous disciple of Christ, John Lennox has provided us with an extraordinary resource – I wholeheartedly recommend this remarkable book.”
—Jonathan Lamb, CEO and minister-at-large, Keswick Ministries
“John Lennox has done it again. Combining deep thought, pervasive research and a keen eye on contemporary Western culture, Lennox has managed to draw tight, informative parallels between Daniel’s life and circumstances and the contemporary believer’s life and circumstances. In my view, the most interesting point in Against the Flow is Lennox’s point that while embedded in the top echelons of a pluralistic culture growingly hostile to biblical religion, Daniel did not rest content to shrink his witness to one of personal piety. Instead, Daniel maintained public engagement with the ideas and practices extant in his day. Finally, Lennox offers wise advice and practical application for how we can become modern-day Daniels. I highly recommend this book.”
—J. P. Moreland, Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, Biola University
Where to Buy:
Pick up a copy of this book at any of the following online retailers: Amazon, ChristianBook.com, or direct from Kregel Books (US distributor for Monarch).
This book was provided by Monarch Books via LitFuse Publicity. The reviewer was under no obligation to offer a positive review.
About Book Briefs: Book Briefs are book notes, or short-form book reviews. They are my informed evaluation of a book, but stop short of being a full-length book review.