In exchange for an honest review, I was given a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishing

Tommy Tenney’s book Finding Favor with the King is the story of Esther.  Tenney writes to draw connections from how we should prepare for and engage with God using Esther’s own life choices as a model.

This book was divided into two fascinating parts.  The details included in all the history and ritual surrounding Esther and the culture of the time is very informative.  The other part is a Tenney’s attempt to show examples through scripture of how as Christians we need to be preparing and pursuing relationship with God.

As a whole book, I found this to be a very frustrating to read.  Tenney’s ties of Esther to how we as current day Christians did not hold water.  From the very beginning, Tenney writes of the book of Esther as a love story.  He apparently holds her in high regard, praising Esther for her choices and wisdom, but his praise is all opinion.  Tenney says “I’m convinced that Esther’s commitment to love set up a transformation in the king’s heart.”  Leap being made here is that Esther loved the King before becoming his wife.  Another, more honest view of this, is that Esther knew the King had murdered or removed his wife and had likely disregarded many women before her, so as a survival skill Esther tried to show the King she respected him.  Another stretch is when Tenney says that Esther had to prepare for her night with the king for a year because she wasn’t good enough just how she was, and then ties this to how we as Christians need to prepare for our encounters with God.  Frankly, this is just bad theology.

When not trying to make connections between Esther and our own relationships with Go this book actually makes some great points about how Christians need to be aware of their true intentions in choices they make when pursuing a relationship with God.

I would not recommend this book.

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