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Was Jesus merely human and not divine? Did Jesus and Mary Magdalene marry and have children? Is there a Holy Grail? If so, what is it and where can it be found? Cracking Da Vinci's Code provides the answers to these and other questions that may have troubled you—or readers you know. Authors James L. Garlow and Peter Jones present compelling evidence that Brown's assertions ar Was Jesus merely human and not divine? Did Jesus and Mary Magdalene marry and have children? Is there a Holy Grail? If so, what is it and where can it be found? Cracking Da Vinci's Code provides the answers to these and other questions that may have troubled you—or readers you know. Authors James L. Garlow and Peter Jones present compelling evidence that Brown's assertions are not only historically inaccurate, but may also contain a hidden agenda.


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Was Jesus merely human and not divine? Did Jesus and Mary Magdalene marry and have children? Is there a Holy Grail? If so, what is it and where can it be found? Cracking Da Vinci's Code provides the answers to these and other questions that may have troubled you—or readers you know. Authors James L. Garlow and Peter Jones present compelling evidence that Brown's assertions ar Was Jesus merely human and not divine? Did Jesus and Mary Magdalene marry and have children? Is there a Holy Grail? If so, what is it and where can it be found? Cracking Da Vinci's Code provides the answers to these and other questions that may have troubled you—or readers you know. Authors James L. Garlow and Peter Jones present compelling evidence that Brown's assertions are not only historically inaccurate, but may also contain a hidden agenda.

30 review for Cracking Da Vinci's Code - Digest

  1. 4 out of 5

    Marie

    I started reading this book blindly for the most part. I have seen the movie version of the Da Vinci Code but have yet to read the book. Even if I had read the book I would have still disagreed with a number of statements that are mentioned with in this book and the lack of research done by the authors on the Pagan religions that they are condemning is an insult to scholars everywhere!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Tiffany

    2.5 stars-- More than just "it was okay," but less than I "liked it." I have a few problems with this book. 1) Every chapter after the first has a cheesy little story as an introduction. We meet Carrie, a college student, who obviously is going through some issues. And somehow she doesn't have her head on straight enough to not be persuaded by friends about the sacred feminism, sex, and whatnot. She does have her head on straight enough, though, to tell her boyfriend that she wants something mor 2.5 stars-- More than just "it was okay," but less than I "liked it." I have a few problems with this book. 1) Every chapter after the first has a cheesy little story as an introduction. We meet Carrie, a college student, who obviously is going through some issues. And somehow she doesn't have her head on straight enough to not be persuaded by friends about the sacred feminism, sex, and whatnot. She does have her head on straight enough, though, to tell her boyfriend that she wants something more spiritual than just sex. Oh my god, beat me in the head. Okay, so this little story is a waste of two to four pages at the beginning of every chapter. I'm just skipping them. Uck. 2) The authors sound like they're lumping all "feminists" together and characterizing them all as angry radical feminists who shout at men. We're not all like that, really. And then they seem to classify feminists with pagans, too... Where'd that come from?? 3) Okay, fine, the Bible doesn't (in your view) "demonize" and "repress" women. Okay, so we can say that, in your interpretation of the Bible, Dan Brown got that one wrong. Can we address, then, the issue of what some Bible-believers have done to demonize and repress women, and yet still call themselves good Christians? Even though the book, itself, may not specifically say "Women are bad" some followers say "Women are bad. The Bible says so." Let's look at that, and at least acknowledge that, and then say that those people who read the Bible that way are incorrect. Don't just gloss over it and say Dan Brown is the only one who's wrong. Sure, he interpreted your literature incorrectly one way, but many of your followers are interpreting it incorrectly, just in a different way. 4) The authors make some claims that I find completely outlandish. Their *two* chapters on sex made me laugh so much I now don't remember most of them (sex in marriage is good, sex not in marriage is bad and heathenish, homosexuality is baaaaaaad). And at one point, they claim that the Church/Christianity saved women in different cultures by convincing the cultures that their treatment of women was wrong. Somehow, I just don't believe that. Granted, I don't know, but am I really supposed to believe that there was no more "sex-selection infanticide" in China after the Christians came and "saved" the country in the 1880s? 5) Some of their examples seem weak, too. In the chapter about women and how much the Bible and Christianity says they're wonderful, they list different women the Bible speaks about or who were influential in the Church's history, including: Tamar (a widow who sleeps with her father-in-law), Rahab (a prostitute), Ruth ("a woman with sterling character"), the woman who had an affair with King David, Mary, and St. Augustine's mother. In these three pages, they list (with only a brief description) twelve women: one prostitute, two women who have affairs, and two women who seem to only be included because they are mothers to men who advanced the Church (and that doesn't even include Mary, Jesus' mother. Okay, let's count her, too. Now we have three mothers). That count doesn't seem very convincing about what great roles women have played in the Church. And if the women who had affairs did so for noble reasons, please tell me those reasons. Otherwise, you've just implied that they, too, are ... disreputable. So three tramps and three mothers? Those are your stellar models of what Christianity thinks of women? They also use the example of "Katherina von Bora [without whom] Martin Luther could never have become the leader of the Protestant Reformation." Okay, I'm dumb -- who is she? Why couldn't he have lead the Reformation? If you're going to cite an example, could you please explain why that example is relevant? Otherwise, you haven't really made your case, which means your case against Dan Brown is also weak, since you're not *completely* proving your point against his point. 6) The authors make a couple of claims about Dan Brown that I find completely wacky, and they are later summed up in one sentence: "...what Robert Langdon in The Da Vinci Code told his Harvard undergraduates to do: enjoy illicit sex and invent a spirituality to go with it". Wait, say what? Where was that in the book?? I missed it! Dude, if Dan Brown/Robert Langdon had *told* me to enjoy illicit sex, I would have remembered that! 7) Their citations in the last few chapters get sloppy -- way too many end notes don't match the text they're supposed to refer to. It makes me wonder if it's just sloppy layout or if they're signs of errors in the research. 8) The chapter on symbols cites lots of sites (ha!) that seem a little ... odd. I'm not going to look at these sites myself (I don't want to get on some weird "You visited our site, thanks for worshiping the devil!" mailing list), but I *hope* that the authors did the proper academic research into the background of the websites they used to make sure they were valid, reputable sites. 9) The authors seem strongly intolerant of other belief systems, like paganism, Wicca, and Buddhism. Okay, paganism and Wicca I can understand (these are God-fearing authors, after all), but Buddhism? I didn't know there was anything controversial about the peaceful Buddhists! 10) The last few chapters sound like they're trying to completely scare the Christian readers. Hell! Fire! Devil! Pagans! Witches! Buddhists! They're all trying to change our world! They're going to take over!! Run! They even strongly imply that the hippies of the 1960s led to paganism of today. Whaaaa? And the quote they use of that culture is Bob Dylan lyrics. Okay, wait... Bob Dylan led to paganism?!? 11) "The Bible's claim to uniqueness is not motivated by narrow-mindedness, intolerance, or fear" (228). But your book/claims/proof seem to be. *eyebrow raise* ******************** Okay, breathe. Strangely, this book is still better (in my opinion) than The Da Vinci Hoax: Exposing the Errors in the Da Vinci Code. I'll definitely keep reading it I did finish reading it, because it *does* have some valuable points. There are just points that I have to say "Wha?!?" or roll my eyes, and there's definitely a whole lotta propaganda.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Adam Nelson

    Garlow manages to debunk in barely 100 pages what Brown has taken well over 300 (if I remember right) to set up as a truth claim, and Brown's position is based on very dodgy, shaky, and questionable evidence. While Garlow's book is rather short and may feel abrupt, it establishes sufficient factual evidence to render Brown's thriller entirely a work of fiction. Unfortunately, many, many people are stupid enough to buy Brown's claims. That's why The Da Vinci Code was such a sensation. I read it m Garlow manages to debunk in barely 100 pages what Brown has taken well over 300 (if I remember right) to set up as a truth claim, and Brown's position is based on very dodgy, shaky, and questionable evidence. While Garlow's book is rather short and may feel abrupt, it establishes sufficient factual evidence to render Brown's thriller entirely a work of fiction. Unfortunately, many, many people are stupid enough to buy Brown's claims. That's why The Da Vinci Code was such a sensation. I read it myself and must agree that it is rather an engaging thriller, and Dan Brown is a writer of considerable talent (I much prefer Digital Fortress, however, as Brown's religious thrillers are outright infuriating in their shameless audience manipulation. He's getting rich off the childish ignorance of the masses). If you want more factual support for the truth and validity of Christianity and the deity of Jesus Christ, read the works of Lee Strobel. And don't feed me that line about how the bias of authors like Garlow and Strobel drive their presentation of the evidence. So does Brown's, but at least the truth pretty much speaks for itself, even stripped of bias. There is no truth to Brown's claims. None.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dava

    I purchased this book for 2 reasons. One is because when I lived in San Diego, James Garlow was the pastor at my church. Two, because the Davinchi Code made me angry. I delved into this book, and was very surprised. It is now he said, she said. I was expecting much more "evidence" to support the cause of the book, but it seemed more like personal opinions. Keep in mind, this is a short little book. I noticed when I was done reading it, that you could offer a larger book that allowed for Bible st I purchased this book for 2 reasons. One is because when I lived in San Diego, James Garlow was the pastor at my church. Two, because the Davinchi Code made me angry. I delved into this book, and was very surprised. It is now he said, she said. I was expecting much more "evidence" to support the cause of the book, but it seemed more like personal opinions. Keep in mind, this is a short little book. I noticed when I was done reading it, that you could offer a larger book that allowed for Bible study or personal growth. So maybe the smaller book didn't have what I was looking for.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Mark A.

    The book addresses a number of inconsistencies between Christian doctrine and the Da Vinci Codes book by using historic documentation and theological scholarship. The book puts much of its terminology in layman's terms and is relatively easy to understand, but it extends its position beyond evidence at times. As a result, the text becomes argumentative and preachy. Still it is a good read that logically refutes many of the claims made in Dan Brown's book. Interesting and good, but not great. Thr The book addresses a number of inconsistencies between Christian doctrine and the Da Vinci Codes book by using historic documentation and theological scholarship. The book puts much of its terminology in layman's terms and is relatively easy to understand, but it extends its position beyond evidence at times. As a result, the text becomes argumentative and preachy. Still it is a good read that logically refutes many of the claims made in Dan Brown's book. Interesting and good, but not great. Three stars.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lila

    Why anyone would think Brown's book, The DaVinci Code, was factual, with historical evidence is beyond me. Cracking Da Vinci's Code is a fascinating read and debunks the greater of Brown's claims in clear, understandable language. To refute all of the fallacious claims would require a vast tome. Cracking Da Vinci's Code is worth reading. Why anyone would think Brown's book, The DaVinci Code, was factual, with historical evidence is beyond me. Cracking Da Vinci's Code is a fascinating read and debunks the greater of Brown's claims in clear, understandable language. To refute all of the fallacious claims would require a vast tome. Cracking Da Vinci's Code is worth reading.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Chad Bunch

    The whole argument from the authors as to why the "facts" presented in Dan Brown's novel are false is that is not the way these "facts" are presented in the Christian Bible. There is no critical thinking involved in this work. Don't waste your time. The whole argument from the authors as to why the "facts" presented in Dan Brown's novel are false is that is not the way these "facts" are presented in the Christian Bible. There is no critical thinking involved in this work. Don't waste your time.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lisa James

    I was given this book because I loved the whole Dan Brown Series. I ended up skimming through it. Everywhere I turned a page & let it drop open to read, more "facts" from the Bible were presented as to why it's not a true story. Basically it points out what everyone already knows. That the series is fiction. HELLO!!! What a revelation! Pardon the pun :) It points these things out by using Bible references, yada, yada. I find it VERY funny that 2 such learned men as the authors actually felt the I was given this book because I loved the whole Dan Brown Series. I ended up skimming through it. Everywhere I turned a page & let it drop open to read, more "facts" from the Bible were presented as to why it's not a true story. Basically it points out what everyone already knows. That the series is fiction. HELLO!!! What a revelation! Pardon the pun :) It points these things out by using Bible references, yada, yada. I find it VERY funny that 2 such learned men as the authors actually felt the need to write a refutation book like this. To me, it simply points out that they felt threatened by a series of books that were simply designed to be a great set of adventure stories. Even funnier, the Bible is also a great set of adventure stories, even if you don't believe that much of it's actually true. Now, from my perspective, I do think "parts" of it are true, there's enough archaeological evidence to prove certain things, but not enough to make me a believer in all of it without question, especially since what's IN those covers is incomplete, & what was thrown out was thrown out for socio-political reasons of the time. So that gives THIS book a lot less credibility in my mental book. ANYWAY, I was pretty bored with it, it's a lot of needless repetition & rhetoric. WHY can't people let a good story just be what it is?

  9. 4 out of 5

    Bladestryke

    Two words describe this book. Lame and preachy. I got the feeling early on that since da Vinci code was so popular that some just wrote books on it just to cash. In. I loved the da Vinci code and thought it was an awesome ride and yes it did make me question my faith but not in the catastrophic way the writers of this book seem to believe. The writers of this book seem to think that dan browns book will shatter the pillars of Christianity. I suppose with all the backlash from the book some Chris Two words describe this book. Lame and preachy. I got the feeling early on that since da Vinci code was so popular that some just wrote books on it just to cash. In. I loved the da Vinci code and thought it was an awesome ride and yes it did make me question my faith but not in the catastrophic way the writers of this book seem to believe. The writers of this book seem to think that dan browns book will shatter the pillars of Christianity. I suppose with all the backlash from the book some Christians would feel threatened and this book feels like a defense. It just comes off being preachy and the beginning of each chapter I felt I had to start ducking with the bible bashing. I'm Christian but I think people need to find their own way to the truth no one should smash them with it. Maybe in some cases dan browns book might bring people to god. Wonder if the writers ever entertained that idea. This book would probably be best used in a bible study or religion student not for the casual reader.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Rod Horncastle

    I really enjoyed this book. I read it in 3 days. I even liked the fictional story of Carrie and her issues with her Pagan feminist Goddess worshiping room-mate. (these people really do exist - I've chatted with many of them.) This book is only a beginning to learning the historical truths of Christianity. Garlow and Jones most likely could have easily made this offering 3000 pages long. Personally i would of enjoyed that too. The issues this book brings up are very relevant to modern Christianity I really enjoyed this book. I read it in 3 days. I even liked the fictional story of Carrie and her issues with her Pagan feminist Goddess worshiping room-mate. (these people really do exist - I've chatted with many of them.) This book is only a beginning to learning the historical truths of Christianity. Garlow and Jones most likely could have easily made this offering 3000 pages long. Personally i would of enjoyed that too. The issues this book brings up are very relevant to modern Christianity and Biblical scholarship. A day doesn't seem to go by where i'm not trying to undo the mess caused by the Jesus Seminar (especially Pagels and Ehrman.) But as we can see from other reviews of this book: people will believe what they want to believe...Good luck!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    I picked this up kind of randomly. I had already read Dan Brown's DaVinci's Code, and had been amused by the fictional nonsense it put out there, but in the past few years I've heard many people spout the same nonsense as if it is historical fact. This book did a good job (although a bit simplistic - I think it is aimed at High School & College kids) of deconstructing the assertions in Brown's book, and identified where the original fallacies came from. And alot of them were crackpot fictional c I picked this up kind of randomly. I had already read Dan Brown's DaVinci's Code, and had been amused by the fictional nonsense it put out there, but in the past few years I've heard many people spout the same nonsense as if it is historical fact. This book did a good job (although a bit simplistic - I think it is aimed at High School & College kids) of deconstructing the assertions in Brown's book, and identified where the original fallacies came from. And alot of them were crackpot fictional creations within my own lifetime. So much for having predated the Gospels of the Bible.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Ray

    Overall, whatever you think of the ideology of the authors, they know what they are talking about. Peter Jones has a Princeton Ph.D., Garlow's is from Drew. It is also written in a non-technical, highly accessible style. Another appeal, for me, is that it deals with teh broader cultural issues (Gnostic world-view) as well as just the details of the Da Vinci Code. I also appreciated Ben Witherington's book on the topic, and D. Bock, both world-class Biblical scholars. Overall, whatever you think of the ideology of the authors, they know what they are talking about. Peter Jones has a Princeton Ph.D., Garlow's is from Drew. It is also written in a non-technical, highly accessible style. Another appeal, for me, is that it deals with teh broader cultural issues (Gnostic world-view) as well as just the details of the Da Vinci Code. I also appreciated Ben Witherington's book on the topic, and D. Bock, both world-class Biblical scholars.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Kymberly

    I just finished this book. I have many friends that have read or that are reading the DaVinci Code and I saw the movie and was thinking I really need to read something that explains this book. Cracking the DaVinci Code: You're Read the Fiction, Now Read the Facts was so great with explaning their beliefs. I feel equip now that I can explain to them not only where their beliefs don't line up but, how to explain the true circle of Life. I just finished this book. I have many friends that have read or that are reading the DaVinci Code and I saw the movie and was thinking I really need to read something that explains this book. Cracking the DaVinci Code: You're Read the Fiction, Now Read the Facts was so great with explaning their beliefs. I feel equip now that I can explain to them not only where their beliefs don't line up but, how to explain the true circle of Life.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    I have only skimmed "The Da Vinci Code". I admit that right now. However, I did get the gist of the book. But before I even peeked at Brown, I had read this book through. This book was incredibly helpful. (Another book I would recommend would be "the Case for the Real Jesus" by Lee Strobel) At the beginning of each chapter we read a short story about Carrie, a college student who is being introduced to the "Sacred Feminine." Easy to understand and on the whole enjoyable. I have only skimmed "The Da Vinci Code". I admit that right now. However, I did get the gist of the book. But before I even peeked at Brown, I had read this book through. This book was incredibly helpful. (Another book I would recommend would be "the Case for the Real Jesus" by Lee Strobel) At the beginning of each chapter we read a short story about Carrie, a college student who is being introduced to the "Sacred Feminine." Easy to understand and on the whole enjoyable.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Don

    This book presents a very important message. It is fascinating as a whole and parts of it are great. But near the middle and end it starts to bog down in extra details and history. It ends well with a very clear message and conclusion. The authors even throw in a little symbology of their own, a very nice touch. I recommend it.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Jim Vuksic

    I have always tried my best to alternate my reading choices so that a non-fiction book follows a fictional story. Sometimes I do not succeed in adhering to this self-imposed ritual because not as many non-fiction books attract and hold my interest as often as does fiction. Cracking Da Vinci's Code not only proved interesting, it turned out to be entertaining, educational, and enjoyable as well. I have always tried my best to alternate my reading choices so that a non-fiction book follows a fictional story. Sometimes I do not succeed in adhering to this self-imposed ritual because not as many non-fiction books attract and hold my interest as often as does fiction. Cracking Da Vinci's Code not only proved interesting, it turned out to be entertaining, educational, and enjoyable as well.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Gideon Arthur

    This is a book that I loved to read. It is a book that cleared the dust from the views of those who have dogmatically accepted the views of Dan Brown. It is not a perfect book, nonetheless it places fiction at where it is supposed to be and facts got their place. It seems that they did the work that the fiction writer could not do. thumbs up

  18. 4 out of 5

    Riska Damayanti

    James L. Garlow wrote this book in a similar way with the novel, which uses a story then he explained. Gives you not only what is fiction fact in Da Vinci's Code, but also all the historical evidence. James L. Garlow wrote this book in a similar way with the novel, which uses a story then he explained. Gives you not only what is fiction fact in Da Vinci's Code, but also all the historical evidence.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Putu

    Well, it just an ordinary book, talking about the different perspective of Jesus. For me, I don't care about it anyway. That is why I questioned myself why I was sacrificing my money to buy this so-so book?? Well, it just an ordinary book, talking about the different perspective of Jesus. For me, I don't care about it anyway. That is why I questioned myself why I was sacrificing my money to buy this so-so book??

  20. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    The Davinci's Code is a novel that nags ar your head and keeps you guessing 'till the end. When boredom keeps you from doing some activity outside you should pick up this book. You will never regret it. The Davinci's Code is a novel that nags ar your head and keeps you guessing 'till the end. When boredom keeps you from doing some activity outside you should pick up this book. You will never regret it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Nicol

    This was a fascinating read about the history of Christianity and it's basic beliefs. The authors were at times a little over the top in their commentary about the facts but it was still very insightful. This was a fascinating read about the history of Christianity and it's basic beliefs. The authors were at times a little over the top in their commentary about the facts but it was still very insightful.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Martha

    The book goes & shows that a lot of the facts in The Da Vinci Code are either misleading and/or just plain false. A must read for anybody that has read The Da Vinci Code & wants to know what are & are not facts. Also, what can't be proven either way... The book goes & shows that a lot of the facts in The Da Vinci Code are either misleading and/or just plain false. A must read for anybody that has read The Da Vinci Code & wants to know what are & are not facts. Also, what can't be proven either way...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Bonnie

    I was somewhat disappointed with the book because I felt as if they were talking down to me, as well as being fairly repetitious with their arguments in various chapters. In my view the book could have covered the meat of their arguments in half the pages.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mia

    If you are into God and Divinity and want to know more, this is your book. Personally, I couldn't read it. I was like I was going to church to hear someone talking to me about the invisible man in the sky. If you are into God and Divinity and want to know more, this is your book. Personally, I couldn't read it. I was like I was going to church to hear someone talking to me about the invisible man in the sky.

  25. 4 out of 5

    John K

    For those who need to develop a balanced view after reading Dan Brown's Davinci code.. For those who need to develop a balanced view after reading Dan Brown's Davinci code..

  26. 5 out of 5

    Plangji Billy

    help me in standing firm on what i believe.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Paul

    Probably made me appreciate Dan Brown more...showed how the author could convince his readers that he was telling the truth. This book offers all the rebuttals to Browns book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    An interesting altenate view's shared in the De Vinci Code, by Dan Brown..Love to hear both sides on an argument, so this is up my alley An interesting altenate view's shared in the De Vinci Code, by Dan Brown..Love to hear both sides on an argument, so this is up my alley

  29. 5 out of 5

    Hendra

    just like that show..Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction the book's trying to reveal whoch of the novel is fact and fiction.. just like that show..Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction the book's trying to reveal whoch of the novel is fact and fiction..

  30. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    Interesting take. It's good to see a book get so much drama. Interesting take. It's good to see a book get so much drama.

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