cover image Priests and Warriors

Priests and Warriors

Walter Joseph Schenck Jr. iUniverse, $42.95 (828p) ISBN 978-1-4917-1309-9

Schenck’s lengthy, ambitious novel portrays Yehuway (God), Mikha’el the Archangel (destined to be incarnated as Jesus Christ), and the Israelites, after their Egyptian exodus and 40 years of wilderness wandering, battling their way toward settlement in the holy land. After Moshe’s death, Yeshua leads the warrior Israelites to be a “singular, unified nation of purpose... to rid Eretz Yisra’el of the insidious, deceitful, manipulative, immoral people of evil.” Ferocious battles are waged, and Yehuway and Mikha’el appear often to impart strategic, spiritual, and legal commands covering hygiene, adultery, clothing, trade, marriage, punishment, slave owning, prostitution, leprosy, and much more. There are morality lessons on greed, idolatry, and sexual impropriety (Achan’s sins bring a devastating punishment), as well as lessons in faith and devotion to Yehuway: the prostitute Rahab, believed to be an ancestor of Jesus, becomes a valued Israelite after accepting Yehuway and helping to annihilate Jericho, which is likened to Sodom in its sexual proclivities. Schenck proves he is an intelligent, passionate writer capable of vivid characterization, yet harsh depictions of slaughter and sophomoric, often vulgar, sexual scenes threaten to diminish the substantive quality of this account of ancient events influencing the founding of the state of Israel. [em](BookLife) [/em]