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Smoke on the Mountain: An Interpretation of the Ten Commandments
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Smoke on the Mountain: An Interpretation of the Ten Commandments

4.2 of 5 stars 4.20  ·  rating details  ·  84 ratings  ·  14 reviews
This celebrated book, a dynamic and original interpretation of the Ten Commandments, is enhanced by a thoughtful introduction by C. S. Lewis, the author's husband. Lewis described the style and theme of the book and commented, "The flaw in us which Joy Davidman seems to me to expose with most certainty will be to some perhaps an unexpected one: the sin of fear ... quite si ...more
Published 1953 by Westminster Press
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Carissa Norris
I found Joy Davidman's review of the Ten Commandments thought provoking and convicting. Unlike many modern Christian authors who mince words trying to "soften" the truth, Davidman doesn't quibble. She is straight forward in writing about the truth. She includes herself in the need to understand and act on truth, which is encouraging to a reader. I most liked the parts she wrote on materialism. Her discussion is so apropos for American Christianity today. So many Christians implore God to save th ...more
Hansen Wendlandt
Romans and the Psalms are pretty important. The Gospels, Major Prophets, a few Epistles, maybe a dozen more books from the Hebrew Bible, all deeply valuable. After that, what is the next book a Christian should read? With all due respect for the whole of Scripture, I’m taking Smoke on the Mountain over Jude and Philemon! Quite simply, Joy Davidman has written such a clear description of Biblical guidance for discipleship and a defense of the very relevance of the Bible for modern living, that an ...more
A sweet friend at church loaned me this book, written by Joy Davidman who was to become Joy Lewis, wife of C.S. Lewis.

An interesting book to read, knowing who Joy would become (Mrs. Lewis). The book is dedicated to C.S. Lewis and she discussed some of the sections she was writing with him via letters. Since her background was as a strident atheist Jew who became a strident atheist Communist, it is no wonder that Joy's writing is very acerbic and sometimes smacks you up the
Smoke is a product of it's time, just remember to consider that it was written in 1953 and Joy Davidman was converted from Marxism. Expect lots of references to communists, though she doesn't treat them like the "Red Menace", interestingly enough she lumps them in with materialists.

Her treatment of Old Testament Israel made me laugh more than once. The lack of awe for her ancestors definitely swept the children's sermon version of them out of my mind forever.

More than a kind of commentary o
J. Alfred
I read this book, of course, because its author was married to my hero, C.S. Lewis, and was immediately upset both with myself (for not assuming that anyone Lewis would marry would necessarily write excellent books) and with the Christian community at large for letting this one slide. I can't think of anyone ever mentioning this book, and it really deserves to be put alongside some of Lewis's own devotional best, especially as it is written by an American and more for the American way of life.
May 06, 2009 Galen rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all Christians
I'll have to hold off on a real review. Suffice it to say for now that this is an incredible book.

I'm not a minister but I'd guess that every chapter could easily provide enough ideas for at least one sermon each. The author has a penetrating insight into the place of Old Testament law in the life of the Christian.

While some of the author's remarks refer to American culture as it was in the mid-1950's the book isn't really dated at all. In fact some of it probably fits today's world even better
Despite being over 50 years old, this speaks well to contemporary Christians, and anyone interested in the relevance of the Ten Commandments today. Davidman - who later married the better-known CS Lewis - has a readable, incisive style, with some excellent insights into culture of both the Ancient Hebrews and the western world in the 1950s... much of which still holds today. It's many years since I read this, and I was surprised how fresh and interesting it seemed. Excellent!
Excellent book! A practical book on the Ten Commandments and their application in life. Can't recommend it enough. Memorable stories and examples enhance her reasoning and leave readers with lingering food for thought. Brief and smooth read.

For avid C.S. Lewis lovers, this book also provides fascinating insight into the mind of Lewis' wife. The similarity in their writing and interests is apparent. Worth the read!
One of my favorite books. I try to read it every year to remind myself what the Ten Commandments are all about. Davidman's perspective as a converted jew and marxist is unique. A must read for anyone who wants to live right.
In college, when I studied the works of C.S. Lewis, I stumbled across this book by his wife. She brings a fresh perspective to something that - I fear - too many of us have become complacent ... the law of God.
Jacob Olofsson
In a smart and kind of provoking way Davidman forces the reader to realise that the Ten Commandments is still relevant to this day.
I will have to read this again. Great exegesis AND extension of the decalogue. Also a colorful portrait of the 50s in places.
Cel Jel
Dated now in the style of writing, very thought provoking about our style of life, and how it can be interpreted.
Peter Jones
For a book written so long ago, it's still got some very relevant insights
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Joy Davidman (born Helen Joy Davidman; 18 April 1915 – 13 July 1960) was an American poet and writer. Often referred to as a child prodigy, she earned a master's degree from Columbia University in English literature in 1935. For her book of poems, Letter to a Comrade, she won the Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition in 1938 and the Russell Loines Award for Poetry in 1939. She was the author of ...more
More about Joy Davidman...
Letter to a Comrade A Naked Tree: Love Sonnets to C. S. Lewis and Other Poems Rauch Über Dem Berg: E. Auslegung D. 10 Gebote Weeping Bay Out of My Bone: The Letters of Joy Davidman: The Letters and Autobiography of Joy Davidman

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“The modern materialist often makes it simply: "Do what you like," and then rushes off to ask his psychoanalyst when he no longer likes anything.” 4 likes
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