Have you ever felt an emptiness in life? It’s OK, Nancy Guthrie can relate. In her book, Even Better Than Eden she writes:
‘Sometimes your sense of emptiness haunts you as a nagging ache. At other times it overwhelms you as a restless agony. Perhaps you have come to see your emptiness as your biggest problem. I have to tell you: that’s not how God sees it. God sees the emptiness in your life as his greatest opportunity, because God does his best work with empty as he fills it with himself.’
That’s clear and powerful, just like the rest of Guthrie’s book.
Nancy Guthrie takes nine images from the Creation narrative and traces them through the Bible to their superlative counterpart in Revelation. They are:
1. The wilderness.
2. The tree.
3. His image.
5. The bridegroom.
8. A dwelling place.
9. The city.
Tracing these themes is a task in itself, however Guthrie skillfully connects them with the reader’s present situations. She does this by drawing life’s situations in the creation story showing how the gospel (the meta-narrative of God) leads to Revelation’s redeemed, recreated Eden. Drawing on the gospel’s past (Eden) and future (new-Eden) to inform the present is the book’s greatest strength.
Guthrie’s teaching ability is on show in Even Better Than Eden. Her writing is clear, easy to understand and draws you gently into her Biblical theology. This is supported by the inclusion of discussion questions for each chapter. A personal study guide can be purchased on Guthrie’s website for greater depth.
Even though Even Better Than Eden contains great teaching, reading is not a hard slog. The prose is easy to read which just carries you along.
Even Better Than Eden is a book that will encourage and inspire. It reveals the tapestry of themes woven into the Bible and where it draws you into the weave. And it gives you a vision of hope by on the threads of God’s Word.
Disclaimer: I have received a free epub copy of this book in return for this review.