For those of you who have asked and/or been supportive in prayer about my web-book project, I'm sending the information below. Instructions for online registration is contained in the FAQs below. I would be thrilled if you'd like to read it, and once read online, if you'd be willing to send this info to any others whom you believe might be interested.
As Martha has mentioned, it is a great pleasure to finally be able to share what I've been working on for the last ten years. If you have any difficulty using these links, please don't hesitate to get in touch.
Parable of the Messiah Scrolls: Frequently Asked Questions
+ What is it?
It's a Christian fiction novel on the web (or "web-book"), readable online only from any browser, including your IPad, Nook or smart phone. It has pop-up definitions and it lets readers add their own annotations.
The main page is here: http://www.themessiahscrolls.com/
+ What is the project goal?
Many people today think the Christian Bible is irrelevant. I'm using fictional scenes to create an historical epic of the first Christian community; showing the original disciples, with Holy Scripture informing each chapter, putting that Bible together and trying to apply its teachings to their own rebirthed lives under Jesus Christ. At the same time there are military actions and assassinations as the Roman and Hebrew enemies of the early Church try to stop them. And then the strong female characters; Lydia of Thyatira, Mary of Bethany and Mary the Scholar tell their side of the story.
+ Why didn't you self-publish a physical book?
I will self-publish in soft cover in early 2013. At that time I will include reader annotations as well. Anyone who buys the web-book gets full online access plus the printed version when published.
+ How do I start reading?
If you're reading this now, you can simply go to the registration and login page from here. If you're outside the site, go to the home page and click "open the online book". This takes you to the same Registration and Login options. You can also goggle "Messiah Scrolls" where the first entry up leads you to the home page and online registration.
At the registration page, if you're new, fill in the fields on the LEFT side under "New Visitor". The ones with stars are required. At the bottom, click "Register for free preview".
Then go to your mailbox and click on the confirmation email. This allows you to read six chapters for free.
Once you've registered, from the home page, just click on "open the online book" and fill in the two boxes on the RIGHT side, your email address and your password. Click "Login".
Each time, the book remembers where you left off. You can hide and show features, and submit your own comments.
If you decide to buy full access, click "Purchase all chapters" from inside the book. You also have an option of full access purchase at initial registration.
Thank you so much for your interest! If you would like help registering or more information, please don't hesitate to reply to this note. Once you registered and begun reading I will provide a Google Voice number for technical support.
+ [Optional] For Christians, what’s interesting about this project?
As I have written elsewhere, You do not have to be a Christian to enjoy aspects of the novel such as the spiritual time travel, the characters’ first century health regimens and recipes, and of course the suspense: will the Apostle John be able to finish writing down “Revelation” before the bad guys get him?
However, Christian readers may also enjoy participating as the characters wrestle with questions such as:
- Have you ever wondered how Christianity spread so quickly in a pre-technological world?
- My view is that the first Christian community followers created a megachurch without walls or denominations. What can we learn from their example?
- How do we “know what we know”, through tradition or the Presence of the Holy Spirit or a combination of the two? When we’re addressing complex life problems in the light of these authorities, what does that look like?
- What was life like for the strong women in the early church? What were their special concerns?
- Who were “the disciple Jesus loved” and “the teacher of righteousness”? [You may or may not know that these are questions Christians have been arguing about for approximately 2000 years. My proposed answers to these and other puzzles are wound into the narrative.]
For further reading, only if you're interested, here are some related essays:
My mission statement
Call for a “Christ Culture”
Notes on the Holy Spirit (or, how do we know God?)
Thanks again, Don