The Second Virgin Birth by Tommy Taylor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The Second Virgin Birth is an interesting book, yet it is different from most of the novels I have read. My impression is that Tommy Taylor did not write this book because he loves writing fiction, but rather because he loves God. I had some issues with his style. There are too many cliches, a lack of attention to detail, and character reactions that are not believable. But the big ideas expressed in the book kept me turning the pages.
When I first read the concept of The Second Virgin Birth I was hooked. We live in a time when events that once would have been considered miracles are now achievable through technology. Advances in reproductive medicine have made it possible for a woman who is technically a virgin to give birth. Cloning processes have reached a point where it is possible to create a person who is more or less an identical twin of another person—if the DNA is available. So the cloning of Jesus Christ sounds plausible.
Before I started reading it, I thought the book was going to be about the realization of God's plan through the work of brilliant people. But instead of taking that path, Taylor has given us a story filled with traditional miracles. These include, among others, the ability of the new Mary to speak with God, the sudden deaths of two hospital orderlies who are about to harm Mary, and a truck driving angel who appears to help her. The way divine intervention was included in a story about science was interesting.
The focus of The Second Virgin Birth is on Mary rather than Jesus. Unlike the first mother of God, this Mary is far from a humble young lady who is told by the angel Gabriel that she has been chosen by God to give birth to His child. Instead this Mary communes with God. She has read all the holy books of the world by age eight and understands them. She enters a trance, not speaking for four years. When she finally talks she tells the people around her what God has told her and she is immediately believed.
The villains of the novel are motivated by greed. The Pope is the worst offender among the people who seek riches and power. This fictional Pope, John Paul III, does everything in his power to prevent the birth of the cloned Son of God, including sending out assassins to kill Mary. He is worried that the birth of her child will cause believers to leave the Roman Catholic church to follow the new messiah. This part of the novel parallels Herod's role in the Christmas story.
I believe this book will appeal to open minded Christians who enjoy reading different interpretations of their faith.
Steve Lindahl - author of Motherless Soul
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