pinterest-7bf66.html Reviews by Peter: The Last Magi (Christian Fantasy Series Book 3) by Bryan M. Powell

Sunday, 1 October 2017

The Last Magi (Christian Fantasy Series Book 3) by Bryan M. Powell

The Last Magi (Christian Fantasy Series Book 3) 

Israel has signed the Peace Accord.

The Third Temple is under construction.

The world holds its breath as the Ark of the Covenant is rediscovered,

And then stolen.

Having destroyed the witch’s medallion, Gasper and Colt prepare to return home when their world is turned upside down.

Led by Jacque de Molay St. John, the UN ambassador from France, Israel signs a Peace Accord with the PLO and the world is thrown into chaos. With the construction of the Fourth Temple underway, all eyes turn Israel.

But other forces are at work. A sinister organization discovered the whereabouts of the Ark of the Covenant and stole it. When the Institute in Antiquities is set on fire as a decoy, Colt and Gasper get separated. Colt, along with Israel’s sacred treasure, is taken deep into the Gaza Strip. Finding him becomes Gasper’s top priority, but in the process, he must find the Ark of the Covenant first. Little does he know there is a spiritual battle raging between the forces of light and the forces of darkness. Follow Gasper on a wild quest to save his young charge and stop the biblical clock from ticking.

Using biblical prophecy, top-selling author Bryan M. Powell masterfully weaves a captivating tale in his Epic Christian Fantasy Series. His spiritual warfare has been said to rival that of Frank Peretti as he tugs back the curtain to give his readers a peek at the unseen angelic forces all around us.  

This novel is to be released mid-October, 2017. 

The Guru's Review: 

This new novel by Powell is in a very unique position. It is better than the previous two making it the best of this trilogy. It is the shiniest jewel in the crown that is this series. 

It is different than the previous two in that those dealt with the curse from the Witch of Endor, this takes an entirely different plot twist that has nothing to do with the previous but does follow on with the Three Wise Men and Colt still being in Jerusalem from The Lost Medallion.

I love eschatological fiction and spiritual warfare. Powell ties these in together extremely well. I actually feel that he has applied the spiritual warfare aspects of the angelic better in this one than the previous. However, there is not as much demonic in this novel mainly towards the end and it is more descriptive than the previous two. This is not a criticism, just an observation and it is not a deficit either.

It has been good to see from this novel more of what Powell's talent and versatility are like in depicting storylines outside of the Witch of Endor plot of the previous two. I say this as I have only read those two novels so have not experienced his talent outside of this. I am looking forward to reading the other series he has, The Chase Newton and The Jared Russel Series. 

In this novel, Powell shows much diversity in plot development and showcases his knowledge of eschatology, specifically the events leading up to the Tribulation period. He has quite an extensive knowledge of this. It seems to me that he has used this novel to encourage readers to embrace what is encouraged in the Word about being discerning and not to be deceived. He has Pastor Wyatt encouraging his congregation to 

be ready, be watching and be witnessing
I feel this is part of the message that Powell wants to instil in the reader in this novel. The take home message if you will. It is always a risk when an author includes some type of teaching of a Biblical issue. It will either turn the reader off and have them skimming over that section or it will engage them and be successful in supporting the plot as well as educating the reader about the nature of the issue. Powell is successful in the latter here. He is very discerning about the issues relating to the Pre-Tribulation, Mid-Tribulation and Post-Tribulation. His account of Pastor Wyatt's sermon at the end of the novel that espouses the above warning (quoted above) is well described, powerful and convincing. 

It there is one issue that will divide Christians is whether the Rapture will occur before, during or after the Tribulation (Pre, Mid or Post Tribulation). Powell seems to provide enough support biblically to suggest that he believes it will be Pre-Tribulation. He is very competent at dissecting the Word of God to show its meaning and applying this to today's debate on this issue. 

Powell has excelled himself in this third instalment. The pace and flow of are faster than the previous and much more involved, but this is due to the seriousness of the subject matter, that of the Peace Accord between Israel and the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization).  The characters come into their own more so than in the previous. I am talking about Gaspar and Colt. Both these characters shine here. My respect for both of these has grown exponentially in this novel. If Gaspar felt that the Brotherhood of Wise Men was on the way out, he need not be concerned as Colt has shown the tenacity, motivation and vision to keep it going. I would love to see a fourth instalment with these two at the helm if just for one last adventure.

This is one action-packed adventure that has all the elements of a great read:  mystery, supernatural, good versus evil, edgy speculative themes, imaginative plot, redemptive themes, the love and mercy of God and it definitely lives up to its subtitle on the cover as Epic Thriller while the author espouses issues that Christians are expecting to see in the near future, relating to the end times or eschatology. This has become one of my favourite novels. There is so much in this novel that maybe even a second reading would be of great value.

As in the previous two novels, Powell does not hold back in showing the redemptive nature of God and his account here is powerful and tailored to suit the person being witnessed to. This is what I love about these accounts from Powell in all three novels. He knows how to tailor the Gospel to the recipient's situation. In the last instalment, Powell tailored the Gospel to witness to Simon Levi as a devout Jew and it was beautiful. In this novel, he has it tailored to Rabbi Musselmen and it appropriate to him being a Rabbi and not just a devout Jew. In another instance, it is just as appropriate with the conversion of Saul Mueller. I loved the supernatural dream that he had where God gave him a second chance and then the vision of Jesus talking to him from the Cross and about him to God. The follow-up from Colt upon his conversion was also appropriate and his challenge to Saul to confess to someone that he has just accepted Jesus is very biblical. Having Saul confront Jacques 
De Molay St John as the demon possession self-appointed world leader and tell him that he forgives him for what he did to his family just shows how the power of the Gospel and Jesus' death on the Cross can turn around one from pure hate and seeking vengeance to embracing and living forgiveness. Not an easy feat without the power of the Gospel. How many times do we see this in real life where someone who has been wronged so deeply is unable to forgive until they come to the saving power of this Gospel? We have all seen this where this bitterness, unforgiveness and vengeance-seeking takes over the person and changes them in such a destructive manner. 

Looking at how Powell has dealt with these conversions from all three novels, it seems to me that there are lessons here on how to witness to where the recipient is and in the situation they are in. No dumping of the Gospel on the person and leaving it at that. It reminds me of Jesus where He met people where they were at and His conversation was appropriate to who they were and what they were doing, such as the Samaritan woman at the well. Jesus leads the way here on this issue and Powell has taken up this mantle to show us how to do this. It is all about being relational and building a relationship.

This is just an example how Christian fiction can not just entertain but uplift, educate and show the power of the Gospel unto salvation

There may not be as much demonic activity in this novel compared to the previous two but what Powell has included is more involved and descriptive than previous. Here we have Jacque de Molay St. John heavily influenced in the occult who takes it to full submission and becomes demon possessed. Powell has not portrayed the details of his possession to glorify the demonic but to show the evil nature of it and its destructive nature and deceptiveness. In doing so, it cannot be denied that it is entertaining but a very sobering entertainment at that. Again, this is not Powell's main motive here.

What I like about Powell's novels in relation to spiritual warfare is that he does not show the demonic being more powerful than the angelic or the saints (Christians) of God. I am reassured by this as this is the reality we live in when we accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour. We live and believe from a point of victory. God has won the battle over sin and death, and over Satan and any power he has. This is so successfully portrayed in this novel with the confrontation of the demonic forces of Jacques' army and those of Gaspar's and the various members of the host of Heaven.

I loved a quote from Powell in relation to this confrontation. Gaspar asks Prince Azrael (angel of the Host of Heaven) if he was afraid when confronting the demon that controlled Jacques De Molay St. John, 

Prince Azrael shook his head, "Satan's forces are defeated foes. We battle from a position of victory. He was never a real threat to you or your young charge"
A simple, short but empowering quote that is in my arsenal of spiritual truth. My prayer is that every Christian would live this out in their lives. It is just one of the many truths that are a given when we believe and accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour. We do not need to be living a life of defeat or being afraid of Satan and the demonic or living in fear of any threat to us from them. They only have power over us if we give it to them and abandon this truth that is such powerful defence against him. 

Fans of Powell's novels will love this new instalment. I am very impressed with this one. I am very glad to have discovered this author. He is one who writes from the heart with a passion to see God glorified and for God to use his talent to equip readers in being ready for the spiritual battle we are involved as soon as we are redeemed and to show this reality to those who do not have a relationship with Christ yet. 

Highly Recommended. 

World Building 5/5

Characterisation 5/5

Story 5/5

Spiritual Level 4/5

Enemy Spiritual Level 4/5 

Overall Rating 4.6/5 Stars 


Spiritually, based on my review and on the following reference booklet,

A Spiritual System for Rating Books by David Bergsland, and that The Last Magi contains elements of the criteria of what constitutes Christian Redemptive Fiction outlined in this booklet, I award Bryan Powell with

The Reality Calling 
Redemptive Fiction Award

Congratulations, Bryan!

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