Off the Shelf: Heaven and Hell

Books that have caught my eye.

Heaven and Hell: Visions of the Afterlife in the Western Poetic Tradition

By Louis Markos

For thousands of years, philosophers, theologians, and poets have tried to pierce through the veil of death to gaze with wonder, fear, and awe on the final and eternal state of the soul. Indeed, the four great epic poets of the Western tradition (Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Milton) structured their epics in part around a descent into the underworld that is both spiritual and physical, both allegorical and geographical. This book not only considers closely these epic journeys to the “other side,” but explores the chain of influences that connects the poets to such writers as Plato, Cicero, St. John, St. Paul, Bunyan, Blake, and C. S. Lewis. Written in a narrative, “man of letters” style and complete with an annotated bibliography, a timeline, a who’s who, and an extensive glossary of Jewish, Christian, and mythological terms, this user-friendly book will help readers understand how heaven and hell have been depicted for the last 3,000 years.

This volume is a follow up to From Achilles to Christ: Why Christians Should Read the Pagan Classics (IVP, 2007). As Dr. Markos’s literary agent, I helped him find a publisher for this outstanding work.

Also available from B&N.

About Stan Guthrie

Stan Guthrie is an editor at large for Christianity Today magazine and for the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview. His latest book is God's Story in 66 Verses. He also is author of All that Jesus Asks: How His Questions Can Teach and Transform Us, Missions in the Third Millennium: 21 Key Trends for the 21st Century, and A Concise Guide to Bible Prophecy. He is co-author of The Sacrament of Evangelism. Besides authoring, writing, and editing books, Stan is a literary agent, bringing together good authors, good books, and good publishers. Stan writes the monthly Priorities colum for BreakPoint.org. He has appeared on National Public Radio's €œTell Me More,€ WGN's Milt Rosenberg program, and many Christian shows, including The Eric Metaxas Show and Moody Radio'€™s €œNew Day Florida.€ A licensed minister and an inspirational speaker, he served as moderator for the Christian Book Expo panel discussion, Does the God of Christianity Exist, and What Difference Does It Make?
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