Words On Fire by Jennifer Nielsen | Living Book Review

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The suppression of truth to advance one’s own agenda is nothing new. (Aren’t we all guilty of leaving out certain details to make ourselves look better?!)

Ananias and Sapphira were punished with immediate death for their collaboration in a “white lie” that was made to elevate their appearance to the rest of the church. God made His abhorrence of lying plain: hypocrisy and dissimulation are not to be tolerated.

We just finished reading Jennifer Nielsen’s book, Words On Fire. It’s about the Russian ban of Lithuanian literature in the late 1800s in an attempt to erase all religion, culture, and language but their own.

Lithuanians died trying to smuggle books into the country that would keep their history, the truth, alive. Words on Fire reveals why people were willing to go to such great lengths for the preservation of words on paper.

Surely no government in the 21st century would ever search, punish with death, or sentence you to Siberia if you were caught carrying books! But the suppression of truth – deceit, lying in its naked form – is a sin committed daily at an advanced level by the powers that be.

My friend, Anne, shared an important article this morning that is worth reading in its entirety. The author says,

“One aspect of the ((See-nineteen)) event propaganda has been the aggressive promotion of official narratives; but just as important has been the suppression and censorship of those questioning authorities. Indeed, there is a case to be made that the most important part of any propaganda campaign is the drive to ensure that certain voices, claims and arguments either never see the light of day or otherwise remain contained within “fringe” or “alternative” circles.”

Replace “books” with “the Internet,” and you’ve got a story awfully similar to Lithuania’s. The practical outworking is different, but the motive is the same. (Romans 1:18).

History tells us how the trajectory of censorship ends if we don’t oppose it. A riveting story of remarkable courage in the face of opposition, Words on Fire tells us how one Lithuanian girl did just that.

Highly recommended as a family read aloud.

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