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Comic book for Sabbatarians pokes fun at antinomianism
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Comic book for Sabbatarians pokes fun at antinomianism

By Mac Overton

BIG SANDY, Texas--The late, great science-fiction writer Robert Heinlein had one of his characters, Lazarus Long, say in one of his excellent novels something to the effect that any religion that cannot occasionally laugh at itself is, frankly, not worth the trouble.

It is in that vein that this reviewer suggests that those from a Sabbatarian Church of God tradition may want to buy Rev. Twistruth & His Disciples, a comic book, and laugh their insides out at the religious humor it contains.

The author-artist, Daniel Botkin of East Peoria, Ill., approaches religious subjects from a Messianic Jewish point of view. Often his scenarios are hilarious.

Mr. Botkin says on an introductory page that "some of the stories you are about to read are based on real events, which have been only slightly exaggerated and embellished ..."

The introductory cartoon panel, "Antinomian Antics," introduces the main characters in the strip, including the Rev. Everett Twistruth, whose shiny new convertible makes him "the only topless preacher in town"; his aunt, Torah B. Gone, also known as Auntie Torah; and Ms. Grace Lawless, a liberated woman who exclaims: "Isn't it great to be free to do what we please? Praise God!"

Then there is Chester Yesman, a disciple who invariably agrees with Mr. Twistruth, and Newton Newconvert, who irritates Mr. Twistruth when he challenges him to explain himself.

On page 5 Ms. Lawless acknowledges to Mr. Twistruth that she knows "the law" is abolished, but she is confused because Mr. Newconvert showed her where Jesus said, "Do not think I am come to abolish the law or the prophets."

The Rev. Twistruth reassures her: "There's a simple explanation, Grace! God wouldn't give His Son the authority to abolish the law, but He did give Paul that authority!"

The book's only defect (in my opinion) is that, in line with its Messianic Jewish perspective, it seems to go a little overboard in advocating the appropriateness of dressing like Orthodox Jews.

But the book is a fun read, especially in certain scenarios. For example, a panel shows Newton Newconvert perusing a notice on a bulletin board announcing a "Messianic Passover celebration."

Ms. Lawless tells him: "Oh, Newton! We've been freed from that! Haven't you ever read Galatians?"

"What do you mean?" Newton Newconvert asks her.

"That's religious bondage!" Miss Lawless tells him. "We're not supposed to observe all that manmade tradition!

"Besides, we've gotta be at church that evening to get things ready for the Easter sunrise service, the Easter ham dinner, and the Easter-egg hunt!"

The rest of the 80-page magazine-sized volume contains similar wit, with which maybe 95 percent of Sabbatarian Christians can agree and get chuckles out of.

The 80-page Rev. Twistruth is available for a "suggested donation" of $10 from Giving & Sharing, P.O. Box 100, Neck City, Mo. 64849, U.S.A.

See also "'Mad' for Sabbatarians Available From G&S," The Journal, Sept. 30, 2001.

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