Saturday, April 10

Book Review: The Gospel According to LOST

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by Chris Seay

When Thomas Nelson Publishers offered a free review copy of "The Gospel According to LOST" by Chris Seay, I was at the same time tempted and repulsed. But I couldn't help myself--I requested the book.

I've been hooked on the TV show LOST since the opening scene of the premier episode, and I consider myself as one of its biggest fans. I'm also a "fan" of, and believer in, the real Gospel (according to God). I was sure this book would either reveal truths behind the mysterious and muddled plot of LOST or distort the true Gospel, the Good News of Jesus Christ.

I was wrong on both accounts.

Mr. Seay doesn't reveal any information that wasn't previously known; he simply (or complexly, perhaps?) takes what IS known, and digs deep into it. And he isn't sparing with using Scripture, either.

When I was reading the first couple chapters, I grew disappointed in the sparsity of Biblical relevance and was afraid my fears about skewering, or mocking, the Gospel had been realized. As I read on, I realized that it was merely a lengthy introduction--a warm-up for what was to come.

Each chapter thereon (with one exception) focuses on a single character, and each takes you deeper and deeper into the spiritual parallels and the hidden allegories woven into the storyline of LOST. Not only does Mr. Seay plunge you into the television show and its characters, he dives into scripture and reveals truths that literally make you stop reading and think for hours. (Well me anyway. I don't think I could be the only one.)

I mentioned an exception. Mr. Seay fittingly devotes a chapter in the middle of his book to the central character of a believer's life-Jesus--focusing on Chapter 15 of the Gospel according to Luke and to the "lost" parables, ably comparing them to the plight of the lost survivors of Oceanic Flight 815.

I marked too many passages in this book to quote all of them in this review, so I chose one at random, which happens to be from that middle chapter:

Christianity (that is, the devotion to following the ways of Jesus) is about love, forgiveness, and reconciliation. Religion is about celebrating the knowledge that you are right, reveling in self-satisfaction, enjoying your superiority, and looking down on the unenlightened. It may seem a bit of an understatement to say that the world needs more Christianity and less religion, but it is such a valid and bold assertion that it can never be uttered enough.

This us-versus-them mentality, this adherence to segregation, is another example of the kind of duality the runs through the stories that we know collectively as Lost. It was common to the Pharisees and remains prevalent for and relevant to all of us, even to the Losties who see themselves as completely different from the Others.

I can't recommend this book highly enough for fellow LOST fans who, like me, have perceived underlying themes (whether intentioned or not) that align with Scripture. I am viewing the current, and final, season of LOST with opened eyes. I can't wait to watch the entire series again, starting with season one, to find out what I missed the first time around.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars.

Catrina Bradley

"God rewrote the text of my life when I opened the book of my heart to his eyes."
Psalm 18:24 (Msg)