Keepers of the Covenant
By Lynn Austin
The Old Testament Comes to Thrilling Life in the Latest from Lynn Austin
In one life-changing moment, the lives of the Jewish exiles in Babylon are thrown into confusion and despair when a decree arrives from the king’s palace in Susa. It calls for the annihilation of every Jewish man, woman, and child throughout the empire on the thirteenth day of Adar, in less than one year. Ezra, a quiet Jewish scholar and teacher, is suddenly called upon to lead the community as they seek God for a reason for this catastrophe. When a second decree arrives, authorizing them to fight back, Ezra is thrust into the role of military leader as they defend themselves against their enemies.
When the battles come to an end, Ezra’s brother Jude is dead and Ezra is required by the Law he so diligently studies to marry Jude’s widow, Devorah, and provide an heir. Fatherhood changes Ezra, and he asks God to make a way for him and the other exiles to leave Babylon for good and return to Jerusalem. His prayers are answered and the exiles move to Judea to revitalize worship at the temple—but the fight to keep God’s Law is never easy. As more and more of his community are tempted, a new battle emerges . . . this one for the survival of God’s covenant and the souls of His chosen faithful.
Lynn Austin’s Return to Me took the first Jewish exiles from Babylon back to Jerusalem. This book is centered on the struggles of those who remained in Babylon.
Life there is not easy for Jews who want to remain true to their faith and heritage. The children, as well as adults, are drifting away from God. So many are enticed by the Babylonian lifestyle while being looked down upon by the Gentiles.
Ezra, a quiet man who studies and teaches the Torah, is forced into a leadership role. Then he is forced to lead a ragtag army to protect his people from being wiped off the face of the earth.
These Jewish survivors then have to continue the struggle. They want to travel to Jerusalem to join those who went before.
Ms Austin’s stories always enlighten me regarding aspects of life in Biblical times. Be prepared with that box of tissues as you may very well shed a tear or two.
If you start very early and read until very late you might be able to read this book in one day. I don’t think you’ll be able to do that as life has a tendency to get in the way. But you’ll not want to lay this book down.
***A special thank you to litfuse for providing a review copy.***
Bestselling author Lynn Austin has sold more than one million copies of her books worldwide. She is an eight-time Christy Award winner for her historical novels, as well as a popular speaker at retreats and conventions. Lynn and her husband have raised three children and live near Chicago.