The Truth and Beauty

How the Lives and Works of England's Greatest Poets Point the Way to a Deeper Understanding of the Words of Jesus

by Andrew Klavan

On Sale: 2022-04-05

Book Summary

The words of Jesus can be as mysterious as they are familiar. For those seeking greater understanding of the Gospels through storytelling and poetry comes this book by Andrew Klavan, who chronicles his own inspiring, late-in-life journey to achieve a fresh perspective and deep connection to Jesus's most well-known and complex biblical passages.

About the Book

Follow Andrew Klavan to a deeper, richer understanding of the words of Jesus.

Andrew Klavan believed what he read in the Gospels, but he often struggled to understand what Jesus really meant. So he began a journey of wrestling with the beautiful and often strange words of Jesus.

He learned Greek in order to read the Gospels in their original languages, and he vowed to set aside any preconceptions about what the Scriptures say. But it wasn't until he began exploring how some of history's greatest writers wrestled with the same issues we confront today--political upheaval, rejection of social norms, growing disbelief in God--that he found a new way of understanding what Jesus meant.

In The Truth and Beauty, Klavan combines a decades-long writing career with a lifetime of reading to discover a fresh understanding of the Gospels. By reading the words of Jesus through the life and work of writers such as William Wordsworth and John Keats, Mary Shelley and Samuel Taylor Coleridge--the English romantics--Klavan discovered a way to encounter Jesus in a deeper and more profound way than ever before.

For readers seeking to find renewed meaning in the words of Jesus--and for those who are striving for belief in a materialistic world--The Truth and Beauty offers an intimate account of one man's struggle to understand the Gospels in all their strangeness, and so find his way to a life that is, as he says, "the most creative, the most joyful, and surely the most true."


Andrew Klavan has written a stunningly original work that defies classification by genre. It is, at once, literary, philosophical, and deeply Christian--and, for all those reasons, personally enriching. Klavan tells how the English Romantic poets--Coleridge, Wordsworth, Keats, and others--set about to use the artistic imagination to salvage 'man's instinctive knowledge of the supernatural' just as materialistic philosophy was taking root in European intellectual circles during the early nineteenth century.
Klavan, a master storyteller, provides a fascinating and informative short history of these literary giants. In the process, he explains why their poetry is important and how it helped to reveal that 'this seemingly indifferent universe is, in fact, a personal creator's act of love.' Then, in a theological finale, he applies the insights of the great poets to illuminate the true meaning of some of the most challenging aspects of the teachings of Christ.
The Truth and Beauty is full of insight about romantic love and human mortality, the perils of utopian politics, the nature of men and women, the meaning of life and the moral order, science and the possibility of knowledge, and especially, the teachings of Jesus as recorded in the Gospels. Not since reading C. S. Lewis's The Great Divorce in college has a single book induced such deep and constructive theological reflection in me, as I suspect it will for many other readers.
Stephen C. Meyer, PhD, author, Return of the God Hypothesis: Three Discoveries That Reveal the Mind behind the Universe; director, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle

What have the Romantic poets to do with Jerusalem? Quite a lot, it turns out. Andrew Klavan has long since secured his spot as one of the most brilliant writers of our age. In The Truth and Beauty, Klavan's cultural insight and eloquence shine as never before. The Romantics lived, as we do, in a time of disenchantment and unbelief. Through a deeply personal telling of his relationship with long-dead poets and the God who made both us and them, Klavan gently guides his readers away from the illusions of our age back toward the transcendentals.
Michael Knowles, author, no. 1 national bestselling Speechless; host, The Michael Knowles Show

We live in a disenchanted world, a world of commodities and 'stuff' that simply do not satisfy the intrinsic human craving for meaning and transcendence. Even the church can too often be driven by prosaic consumerism and not by the great mysteries of life. This is, strange to tell, where some of the great giants of English literature, especially the Romantics, can help us. They may not have offered the right answers, but they did grasp something of the mystery of existence. In this book, Andrew Klavan uses these great writers as foils for discussing the deeper questions of life, questions which he shows are answered only in Christ. For those who love both Christ and great literature, as Andrew Klavan clearly does, this book is a delight and a means to that most important of things: the reenchantment of our world.
Carl R. Trueman, professor, biblical and religious studies, Grove City College; fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center, D.C.

Poetry and literature point to the sacred. Andrew Klavan reminds us how.
Dr. Jordan B. Peterson, author, international bestselling Maps of Meaning, Twelve Rules for Life, and Beyond Order

You don't have to be a Christian to appreciate much of the timeless wisdom Andrew Klavan presents in The Truth and Beauty. Klavan is a magnificent writer, a person of wisdom, and a man of compassion--all of which shine through here.
Ben Shapiro, editor emeritus, Daily Wire; host, The Ben Shapiro Show

'Beautifully written...Extremely engrossing...Klavan weaves such a rich narrative of history, biography, literature, science, morality, and faith that a short review cannot do the book justice...The perfect book for the Easter season.'
The American Spectator

Product Details

  • Imprint: Zondervan
  • On Sale: 2022-04-05
  • Pages: 272
  • Publisher: Zondervan
  • Publication Date: 2022-04-05
  • Trim Size: 147.000mm x 221.000mm x 24.000mm
  • Weight: 358.000gr
  • Category 1 : RELIGION / Biblical Criticism & Interpretation / New Testament
  • Category 2 : RELIGION / Christian Life / Spiritual Growth
  • Category 3 : LITERARY CRITICISM / European / English, Irish, Scottish, Welsh
  • Category 4 : LITERARY CRITICISM / Gothic & Romance
  • Category 5 : RELIGION / Biblical Studies / Jesus, the Gospels & Acts