ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED IN VORAKA
Article Published on 19th January 2024 by Gabriel Valor | www.vorakamag.com
This book was written to be an aid for those who may be searching for something more within the pages of the scripture. While it’s true that the Bible is complete within itself and needs no additional material, sometimes, it is nice to have someone’s thoughts or ideas to compare to your own, or to help extrapolate and define the truth as you read. While I am studying for my Master’s Degree in Divinity, I am not a Doctor of Theology, and while I have preached on several occasions, I am not an ordained pastor. But I believe that each Christian has the ability and should be, a well-studied theologian in his/her own right. To be so well versed in the Bible as it was meant to be, as God intended for each saint in Christ.
One of the coolest things I have seen over the years is the way that God reveals truth to us. As a kid, I knew the story of Jonah, and I had a basic understanding of it. However, it wouldn’t be till I was much older that I realized that there was so much more to this story than just a big fish following God’s directions. In this exposition, I combined the Minor Prophet Nahum with Jonah, since historically speaking they are part of the same story. Jonah shows us God’s faithfulness to show mercy to the repentant heart, while Nahum shows God’s promise of judgment on those who are prideful and refuse to repent and come to Him for forgiveness. Nineveh would learn both of these lessons over a hundred-year span and would receive both God’s mercy and then, His judgment.
While similar to a full commentary, From Mercy to Judgement is meant to help you in your personal study of the Bible. It goes chapter by chapter and verse by verse in an expository, yet simplistic, way to help you understand and absorb the truth in the messages. Here is the story of mercy given to a city long forgotten and the judgment that brought them there.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Though it wouldn't be until his early 30s that Thomas would begin his focus on writing and lead out with his first novel, Love is Blind, reading and writing was always there. Thomas grew up as the oldest of eight children, and books became an escape from the chaos of his everyday life. Over time, as Thomas connected more with his faith and the philosophical connections of his martial arts training, he began to write poetry and short essays on everyday feelings and thoughts. These would lay the groundwork for what would be further expounded upon later.
During his early adult life, Thomas' family and military obligations, along with going back to finish college, would take up much of his time and bring his writing to a halt. However, despite this, he always retained his creative side and the imagination that sparked it.
As his life began to calm down several years after his divorce and near the end of his military career, Thomas started to write again, mainly in short essays on Bible topics. But when a text message from a friend sparked a short story idea, Thomas wrote it out and was instantly pulled into the desire to expand his thoughts and stories on the page. Since then, Thomas has developed multiple books covering several genres and topics. His first release, a romantic mystery thriller called Love is Blind, came out in winter 2023. This was followed closely by a collection of his poetry and two short stories: a fun video-game-themed adventure, and a horror story of a different nature in Poems, Sonnets, and Short Stories. Afterward, Thomas released his first Bible Exposition, A Walk… Through Romans, in August of the same year. Finally, he recently released From Mercy to Judgment: The Story of Nineveh. Another shorter Bible exposition on Jonah and Nahum. From his upcoming science fiction and fantasy books to more Bible expositions that are written in a way that simply exposits the context within. Thomas’ ability to fit the styles of the genres is impressive and has something for everyone.
EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR THOMAS ROWAN
What inspired you to shift your focus to writing, particularly your debut novel "Love is Blind," in your early 30s after a hiatus?
I received a lot of encouragement with my short story "Tales of the Fruit Ninjas," which prompted me to expand to one of my favorite genres: mystery and thriller. I have some ideas for a similar story and hope to write another one.
Growing up as the oldest of eight, how did books being an escape influence your writing style and the themes in your current works?
Growing up, I used books to retreat to another place through their pages. I have some genres that I like more than others, but over the years, I have read various styles of writing and stories, which have helped contribute to my style today.
Balancing family, military obligations, and returning to college, how did these experiences shape your view on creativity, and how did you keep your creative side alive during busy periods?
To continue reading the full interview, click here to download the January 2024 Literature special issue XV.