In this second novel of the series, Art West seeks out the meaning of the mysterious symbolic number 666 while exploring sites in Egypt and Turkey. He discovers an inscription in southern Egypt at the Philae Temple in Aswan, which reads, "He is many men and no man, towering like the sphinx, dead and alive, but who knows what he thinks? Back from the Styx; 666." Who is this sphinx-like man? Could he be relevant to the twenty-first century? These questions lead Art to investigate possible connections between the Coptic Gospels and Coptic Orthodox beliefs. In the middle of such investigations Art is involved in a harrowing prisoner exchange in Israel at the hands of Hamas, and he discovers the origins of Christians wearing crosses. He also tangles with the notorious terrorist El Tigre.
Set in the context of Middle East tensions between Muslims, Christians, and Jews, this fast-paced thriller explores the meaning of eschatological or "end times" language for the earliest Christians, who, while trying to spread the kingdom of God, faced the rising tide of the kingdom of Caesar and his emperor cult. Along the way West learns some apocalyptic secrets destined to change his life forever.
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