The modern world seems to lurch between these two attitudes. At one level, we have never been more sceptical about ghosts and demons and Satan. And yet there are many, even in Western societies, who are deeply fearful of evil spiritual forces. There are yet more still who find the topic fascinating and endlessly devour movies and TV shows that exploit these ideas and themes.
Christians also often swing between paying the devil far too much attention, and not enough. Some Christian groups become obsessed with notions of 'spiritual warfare' and ridding people of demons, whilst other Christians regard such talk—even though it is found in the Bible—as outdated and part of the superstitious misunderstanding of the world from less enlightened, less scientific times.
In Living with the Underworld, the head of New Testament Studies at Moore Theological College, Peter Bolt, takes readers on a breathtaking journey through the spiritual underworld revealed in the pages of Scripture, and shows how Jesus came to reveal its true nature, neutralize its power, and liberate us to live without fear.
Living with the Underworld does not dismiss the Scriptural evidence of the spiritual underworld, but nor does it go beyond what we can know about that realm. Peter Bolt explores what God reveals to us in the Bible, and very helpfully points us to the power and significance of the cross. In so doing, he reveals a little-understood framework for understanding the life, death and resurrection of Jesus—a framework that will enlarge and enlighten evangelical thinking.
It is important to understand the underworld properly, because this will help us understand the message of the Bible better, which will benefit everybody. If we understand the Bible better, we will better be able to understand the threat the underworld poses to us all, and this will help us to more compellingly hear the invitation that Jesus is extending to us all.
In Living with the Underworld, Peter Bolt brings his quirky and humorous style to his topic, and makes his book hard to put down because it is so fascinating and engaging.
A recommendation from Don Carson:
"In a Hollywood-constrained vision of angels and devils, of monsters and the living dead, of alternative worlds with goblins and terrors and sorcerers, we need to recognize where the true horrors lie, where contemporary fantasies embody them, and where they entirely miss the mark. Peter Bolt is a good guide because his 'take' is firmly grounded in a careful reading of the Bible and in an equally sensitive grasp of twenty-first century Western culture. Besides, his book, far from being terrifyingly ponderous and gray, is a pleasure to read. It might even get you to go back and look at a recent film with fresh eyes."
A recommendation from Melvin Tinker (Author and Vicar of St John, Newland, Hull, England):
"At a time when more and more people are asking questions about the 'other world' of spirits, ghosts and demons, this a brilliant book which helps provide the answers. It is wonderfully readable, highly accessible and penetratingly biblical. It is a book which should be in every high street bookshop - definitely a 'must' read!"