Parable of The Messiah Scrolls Full Descript see authors notes on website)
The novel's organizing question is, "How did ten to twelve rag-tag apostles and their cult leader, Jesus, not only stand down the Roman Empire but, by 74 AD, build two hundred Messiah Communities that eventually established Christianity as a dominant personal, social, cultural and literary force for the next two thousand years?"
A single biblical and fictional narrative shows the formation and stunningly rapid growth of the original Christian community.
How much of the novel is Biblically based? What are its key concerns?
Most of the novel's geographical and biblical research is factual. The fictional settlement of Rhakotis (suggested by the recent discovery, near Alexandria, of what may be Ancient Rhakotis) is argued to be the site of the original Christian community, called Community Zero. The novel's main characters are from the Bible, their lives fictionally extended. Other characters have been fictionally constructed from various personalities in the first century. Concerns of the novel include:
>> Depict Christian community as practiced by the first Christians, showing the dialogues that led to the Gospels being written and then applied, in the hope that believers today might find their own approaches to Scripture and praxis refreshed and invigorated.
>> Draw a portrait of the Apostle John, (author of the Gospel of John, Epistles, and Revelation), including a clear picture of his later life.
>> Write a thriller that can be enjoyed by all readers (Christian and otherwise), with John's best friend, Tertius Falcon X, at its center. (Tertius is mentioned in Scripture as the scribe for Paul of Tarsus; this novel places his conversion in the context of many other adventures.)
>> Bring together Luke the historian and Luke the theologian. While the untold story of John the Apostle is a key arc of this novel, and the energetic Tertius Falcon X is its hero, Luke of Macedonia and his work Luke-Acts provide an essential organizing backbone.
>> Bring the resources of scholarship and fictional narrative to bear on other disputed questions regarding first century historical, hermeneutical, cultural, literary and spiritual praxis.
>> Identify leadership issues for Christians facing both first century Rome and all the "Romes" of the present day: Christian leadership in the first three decades after the Resurrection of Christ became Holy Spirit transformational in a way that can inspire us today. See Essay on "Evangelicals and the MegaChurch" on website front page along with Review by Tom Krattenmaker, a contributing columnist for USA Today; author author of the 2013 book The Evangelicals You Don't Know: Introducing the Next Generation of Christians (Tom's book gives market context for a large audience involved in Christian service and mission).
The arresting feature of the Novel is First Century Time Travel: what if the authors of the Gospels had used Holy Spirit-inspired time travel to re-visit the key events of Jesus' ministry, in order to confirm that their Scriptural accounts were as authoritative and accurate as (super) humanly possible?