Soul's Gate - James L. Rubart
- Written by Emma Engel
Can four people change the world? Reece thinks so – more than thinks actually. He believes it with every aspect of his being. And he has received a prophecy that he will be the one to bring them together and teach them how to access their God-given powers. The Singer, the Teacher, and the Leader join him at a retreat appropriately called Well Spring…but even as the Prophecy seems to be fulfilled, many more questions arise. Who is the fourth? Can they truly master their God-given gifts? And how will they survive now that Hell has decided to take their actions personally?
Unlike many stories I read, I wouldn’t call Soul’s Gate exciting. While in some ways you could say there’s a lot of action in this book, the heart of it was deeply philosophical. So it falls in the much rarer category of fascinating. It is a book about supernatural warfare, but I felt that, like its subject, the point of book kept taking place on two different levels.
On the surface, it was full of demons and superpowers like many other books in its genre. However, the characters’ trips into each other's souls and the timing of the opposition they faced are what caught my eye. All three of the main characters were very good at their jobs and ministries. Regardless of anything else they felt or believed, their actions were positively influencing people toward God. Yet, it wasn’t until their focus turned toward prayer that the full assault began on their souls. The scene where a demon offers to fund a Christian radio service in return for a character ceasing her attempt to draw closer to God was chilling. It reminded me forcefully of a passage in A.W. Tozer’s That Incredible Christian.
“A fourth reason is that a praying Christian is a constant threat to the stability of Satan's government. The Christian is a holy rebel loose in the world with access to the throne of God. Satan never knows from what direction the danger will come. Who knows when another Elijah will arise, or another Daniel? or a Luther or a Booth? Who knows when an Edwards or a Finney may go in and liberate a whole town or countryside by the preaching of the Word and prayer? Such a danger is too great to tolerate, so Satan gets to the new convert as early as possible to prevent his becoming too formidable a foe.”
The other aspect of Soul’s Gate that fascinated me was the prophecy. Direct from the Divine prophecies aren’t something you see in a lot of Spiritual Warfare books, and, to be honest, I never thought it was well enough explained. However, what caught my attention was that none of the characters really understood the prophecy even though in many cases it was their main motivation. Much like the Biblical prophecies, human interpretations fell short or turned out to be completely wrong. Consequently while I still found the very idea of such a prophecy, even in a work of fiction, rather troubling, I did think it was remarkably well handled.
So while I found Soul’s Gate a far cry from the rip roaring adventures of Frank Peretti and Ted Dekker, I did feel that by appealing to the head rather than heart, Mr. Rubart delivered a compelling and timely concept: in the end it is who you are, not what you do that threatens the Enemy. Believing that we as an individual don’t really matter and calling that humility is a trick worthy of Screwtape. So don’t let teleportation and soul hopping turn you off. The real Soul’s Gate lies under the trappings.
My thanks to BookSneeze for providing me a review copy of Soul’s Gate, in return for my honest opinion of this book.