The Battle for Middle-earth: Tolkien's Divine Design in The Lord of the Rings

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Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2004 M11 4 - 373 pages
J. R. R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings has long been acknowledged as the gold standard for fantasy fiction, and the recent Oscar-winning movie trilogy has brought forth a whole new generation of fans. Many Tolkien enthusiasts, however, are not aware of the profoundly religious dimension of the great Ring saga.

In The Battle for Middle-earth Fleming Rutledge employs a distinctive technique to uncover the theological currents that lie just under the surface of Tolkien's epic tale. Rutledge believes that the best way to understand this powerful "deep narrative" is to examine the story as it unfolds, preserving some of its original dramatic tension. This deep narrative has not previously been sufficiently analyzed or celebrated. Writing as an enthusiastic but careful reader, Rutledge draws on Tolkien's extensive correspondence to show how biblical and liturgical motifs shape the action. At the heart of the plot lies a rare glimpse of what human freedom really means within the Divine Plan of God. The Battle for Middle-earth surely will, as Rutledge hopes, "give pleasure to those who may already have detected the presence of the sub-narrative, and insight to those who may have missed it on first reading."

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User Review  - Skybalon - LibraryThing

This is easily the best book I didn't bother to finish. The author is an expert in both Christian Theology and Tolkien. It comes through on every page. And that's also the reason I couldn't finish this. It's just too much for me. Read full review

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User Review  - wisdomlore - LibraryThing

This book is interesting, but has no index. This makes it hard to look anything up or look back at anything. Read full review

Selected pages


The Hobbit
The Ring Sets Out
The Ring Goes South
The Treason of Isengard
The Ring Goes East
The War of the Ring
The End of the Third Age

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Page 40 - Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world-rulers of this darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

About the author (2004)

nbsp;Fleming Rutledgenbsp;is an Episcopal priest, a best-selling author, and a widely recognized preacher whose published sermon collections have received acclaim across denominational lines. Her other books includenbsp;Help My Unbelief, Three Hours: Sermons for Good Friday, Advent: The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ, andnbsp;The Crucifixion: Understanding the Death of Jesus Christ, which wonnbsp;Christianity Today'snbsp;2017 Book of the Year Award.

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