Sometimes a book comes along that you just have to read. The Wonderful Yah is one of those for me. Despite a cover that didn’t appeal to me, any book that seeks to help readers understand the depths of Scripture is a book I want to dive into. The questions remain, then: First, “Who is Yah?” and second, “Does the book help me understand Him better?”
“Yah” is God.
Will the book help readers understand Him better? The answer to that one is significantly more complicated—kind of like the book, actually.
I want to say up front that I think my review is going to come off unfairly tipped to the unfavorable side. This isn’t because the book isn’t worth considering. It’s more that there is much more about it that bothered me than excited me. So, I want to state now that just because I seem to have a lot against the book, that’s not quite true. It’s more that I see issues that will possibly bother readers and I want to point them out.
If there was equally as much that would attract and encourage readers, I would be including that as well. As it is, the bottom of my review will offer recommendations for who the book might most interest/benefit.
Note: links may be affiliate links that provide me with a small commission at no extra expense to you. Additionally, this book was given to me by the publisher for review purposes. Opinions are mine.
First, This book could use a developmental editor who knows how to organize a project like this. It seemed as if every time the book gained some momentum, I was ripped out of the text when, for example, Mr. Marx began to explain in minute detail why he chose to use one form of Hebraic spelling over another.
Additionally, more than once, he informs us of some nuance or another and then tells us how this isn’t relevant to the study so he won’t expound (much) on it. I don’t understand the purpose of bringing up something if you have no intention of actually exploring it.
Another thing Mr. Marx tried was to use a key and its formation and usage as an illustration of what the book is supposed to do for the reader. For me, it became distracting from the purpose of the study rather than helpful.
Finally, I don’t think the author knows his true audience. He states that he is writing to scholars, academics, and theologians and hopes “lay people” will benefit from the simpler elements of his work. From what I saw in his book, it appears to me that he really wants to reach the unsaved who have not heard of the concept of a triune God and might find that confusing.
Is it well written?
…ish? I found the writing style to be difficult to follow—not because I didn’t understand what he said but because of the inconsistency in style. In many places, he refers to himself as “the author” and then follows that by using a casual “we” in stating where the study of this next nuance will lead. There’s a swing between almost pretentious and conversational writing that makes you feel a bit like you’re on a yo-yo.
Additionally, his writing “voice” often comes off as condescending. I have no doubt that Matthew Marx is a brilliant man, but like many with higher than average intelligence, he tends to “talk down” to his readers in an almost offensive tone.
All of that said, I found no typos, and each individual sentence was grammatically correct.
Did I find anything that concerned me?
Only two things were truly concerning, and both I think are more the fault of how they were presented rather than truly concerning issues on the part of the author.
First, early on, Mr. Marx informs us that because people have obscured the meaning of the Godhead with “semantics,” we’ll need to approach his book with a “childlike faith,” believing that God will show them what they need to know. While the author doesn’t expressly state it, I felt a strong overtone of, “God will show you that what I’m telling you is how it is.”
He further “translates” certain words in certain verses in order to have us read it as he understands the verse to read. While I am not saying that I disagree with his translation, even, I will say that I find having his translated words interjected into the Scriptures as if automatically verified as a true rendering of the original word meanings to hold potential danger in mismanaging Scripture. As far as I can see, I don’t think this happened, but the cavalier way in which it is added does make me uncomfortable.
So what is this great mystery?
God’s name is Yah. Really, that’s what it boils down to. A summary of the book, as I understand what of it I read (I found myself skimming when things became redundant and condescending), can be summarized in one sentence. God is one—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
That’s it. That’s what this book teaches. It’s a long, pedantic treatise on the Godhead written with the assumption that the reader can’t possibly understand this concept without knowing the meaning of each Hebraic letter, the meanings behind them, and the different additions to the common spelling practices of Hebrew.
I confess that the way things were written made me fear for heretical teaching. I don’t think it’s there. I think most, if not all of what he actually tries to share is Biblical. Where I take issue is that he writes as if he has unlocked some great mystery that no one can possibly understand without knowing these Hebraic origins of God’s name. I disagree. I’ve never met anyone who had half as much trouble understanding that God is both one and three as Mr. Marx asserts.
Yes, the study is interesting. No, it isn’t anything new or amazing. It’s simply an overly-dramatized retelling of basic Bible doctrine utilizing the roots of the Hebrew spelling of God’s name as the premise for understanding.
While this makes it sound as if I’m upset that I spent so much time on the book, I’m actually not. I’m thankful for the review copy provided to me, and while I wish I could write a more glowing, favorable review, I am not sorry that I read it. I may even go over certain parts again. Should I find that I change my mind about some things, I’ll be sure to adjust my review accordingly.
Recommended for people who like research, who want to find ways to explain the Godhead to people who don’t yet know about our Lord God Jesus Christ, and for those who are interested in Hebrew and the Hebraic origins of Christianity.
The Wonderful Yah is on tour with Celebrate Lit
Book: Wonderful Yah: The Unveiling
Author: Matthew Marx
Genre: Non-Fiction, Christian, Theology
Release Date: July 22, 2019
What is His name, and what is His Son’s name, if you know? This intriguing question from the book of Proverbs seems to echo the question in so many of our hearts: Who is God really? Over the past two millennia, people have tried to understand the mystery of the divinity of God using logic and thinking, but it fails every time. The Godhead does not operate or function as people do, and God is not subject to human reasoning.
Yet understanding the mystery of the Godhead is both simple and profound when we know how to use the key Jesus gave us.
This book begins by accepting the challenge of some of the most thought-provoking Scriptures in the entire Bible—Proverbs 30:2–4. Throughout the book’s exploration of the divinity of God, a power hidden within God’s Hebrew name is discovered and then unleashed to answer the question, What is His name, and what is the name of His Son? The mystery of the Godhead is then subdued as God’s Hebrew name erupts as the correct foundation on which to discuss the relationship between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Scriptural doors that once seemed impenetrable now open easily with a turn of a key, helping you to connect with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in a deeper, more focused way.
About the Author
After spending twenty-five years working with the severe and persistently mentally ill, Matthew William Marx felt a burden to pray for those struggling to understand Jesus. His prayers led him to a deeper understanding of God, which he is now sharing with his readers. Matthew is a graduate of Oral Roberts University and holds a master’s degree in social work. He is licensed with the state of Michigan, where he lives with his wife, Suzanne.
More from Matthew
Wow! Who would have known? Normally, non-fiction books like Wonderful YaH: The Unveiling primarily focus on: what is the problem and how to fix it. However, wouldn’t it be intriguing if a non-fiction book incorporated some elements of a fiction book such as mystery, suspense, and drama, with the reader bring the drama as they deal with their internal dialogue on how to answer a proposed question to help solve the mystery. Be aware, however, that this type of adventure and journey is not for the timid or light of heart. Taking fiction elements such as mystery, suspense, and drama and placing them in a non-fiction book could produce a real-world reality shift that is different from what the reader has known or experienced—Wonderful YaH: The Unveiling is one such book.
Come and join me on a non-fiction journey and adventure that incorporates some elements of fiction that explore, explain, and solve two of the greatest mysteries of the Bible. The two great mysteries to which I refer are (1) the divinity of Jesus Christ in the Godhead, and (2) how our lives and the choices we make fit into God’s will and divine providence. Many smart and wise people, over the past two thousand years, have tried to explain and solve these two mysteries but have fallen short typically. Wonderful YaH: The Unveiling fills the gaps left by previous attempts to solve these two great mysteries by discovering the hidden power in God’s Hebrew name, then harnessing that power to solve the mysteries.
You might ask, “What is the point of being able to solve these two great mysteries, and what does it have to do with me”? The point is to know the One who created everything and to figure out how our lives fit into His grand scheme of everything. More simply stated, what is our purpose for being on planet earth? Surely, there is more to life than just being born, living for a few decades if you are fortunate, then dying. Isn’t it worth asking: Is our life more than just a blade of grass that is here today then gone tomorrow? If there were an answer to this mystery, wouldn’t it be nice to find the answer to this mystery before we die? People often read fiction for the adventure of mystery and suspense. Why not read a non-fiction book that offers mystery and suspense but with real-life consequences?
Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, October 28
Writing for God’s glory, October 29
Christian Bookshelf Reviews , October 30 (Author Interview)
Mary Hake, October 31
Just the Write Escape, November 1
Through the Fire Blogs, November 2 (Author Interview)
Artistic Nobody, November 3 (Author Interview)
Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, November 4
Blossoms and Blessings, November 5 (Author Interview)
Texas Book-aholic, November 6
janicesbookreviews, November 7
My Devotional Thoughts, November 8 (Author Interview)
A Reader’s Brain, November 9
Inklings and notions , November 10
To celebrate his tour, Matthew is giving away the grand prize package of the choice of paperback book or eBook, a $75 Amazon gift card, and a $25 Starbucks gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.