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Drive Thru History - Acts to Revelation Review

March 20, 2019


We have always loved history. My high school history teachers got me interested in history becuase they taught it as a story and not just a bunch of people's names and dates. That's why we have loved Drive Thru History® in the past. We just knew that we would love their new series called Drive Thru History® "Acts to Revelation". Dave Stotts teaches in a story-like method. It's easy to follow along and understand what happened. He connects the Gospels to this series and continues the story where most stop (at the resurrection of Jesus). This helps us understand how the church actually got started and how it thrived. 


When we received the DVDs in the mail both of our boys were sick. We sat and watched a few episodes and I didn't feel bad for watching tv for school. The boys were actually learning history, bible, geography, art, and foreign language (hebrew and greek translated) together. This goes along with our high schooler's World History and Bible credits that he is earning! (Bonus!)


Both of our boys really liked watching this series. I didn't have to force them to watch. We usually watched them first thing in the morning as we were eating breakfast. Some mornings we would watch one, but others we would watch two or three. It just depended on what else we had going that day and the amount of time that we had. There were never any moans or groans about watching more than one episode. They enjoy Dave Stotts and how he is both goofy and serious. It really is a great combination to keep them entertained, but also educated. 


We have a 9 year old and a 14 year old. They both were able to enjoy these videos and learn from them. I love when we can do one thing, both of them learn, and I don't have to do anything to adapt the curriculum in order to meet where either of them are. That doesn't happen very often. 


Here are some of what our 9 year old liked about them:

     * He commented on the graphics that were placed within the video

     * He liked to find the cities talked about in the episodes on the map in the case of the dvds. We had found older videos that were given to us by a friend a long time ago. They are now in his room so that he can watch them in his free time because he has enjoyed watching these.

     * He said, "I hope he does the rest of Bible because he explains the Bible well."


Here is what our 14 year old liked:

     * He liked that because of all of the history that he (Dave Stotts) shows, it proves how accurate the Bible is. (Great observation!)


Here is what I liked about it:

     * He talks about the old cities and what they are like now

     * He reads from the Bible during the episodes to give proof of what they are saying by giving the Bible verse account

     * There are suggested readings before episodes

     * Dave Stotts shares his favorite verses throughout the episodes. This makes it very personal.

     * We can actually see where these places are that we have read about in the Bible. It makes it real!

     * Josephus is mentioned. When my husband was a preacher, he quoted him quite often in his sermons to talk about the history or "tradition" of the time". 


My parents came over to visit one day when we were in the middle of an episode. They sat down with us to finish watching it. They really liked it and even learned things themselves, even though they have gone to church and read the Bible for their entire lives. They are actually going to borrow the DVDs now that we have watched them all. They want to watch the entire series as well.


There are 18 episodes in this series and all of them are under 30 minutes long. Included with the DVDs is a study guide. This is full of questions to discuss, the answers, as well as maps and pictures that go along with episodes. It is a wonderful resource for families to be able to take the episodes a little further than just watching. Here are some notes from each episode so that you know what each of them are about:


1 - The Gospel Shared at Pentecost

* connects Luke with the beginning of Acts

* see where the disciples preached the good news at Solomon's colonnade


2 - The Church Grows in Jerusalem

* Peter, in the name of Jesus, heals the man outside the gate Beautiful & then stands up to the Jewish leaders

* stoning of Steven & Saul starts to destroy the church

* the Damascus Gate is called the St. Steven's gate because he was stoned near there


3 - The Gospel Spreads to the Gentiles

* Philip, Simon the sorcerer, and the ethiopian

* Roman mile is shorter than a regular mile

* the port in Jaffa was where timber for Solomon's temple was brought in & Jonah got on the boat

* Peter brings Tabitha back to life

* Cornelius and his family baptized


4 - Saul of Tarsus and the The Road of Damascus

* Tarsus is one of the greatest learning cities of the time, like Athens and Alexandria

* Tarsus was Marc Antony's capital city & Cleopatria met him there to start their secret coalition

* Damascus is in Syria & they are having trouble with Isis


5 - Paul's First Missionary Journey - The Island of Cyprus

* Syrian-Antioch was where the believers were first called Christians "Christianos" (Greek for follower of Christ)

* island of Cyprus is 40th tourist destination

* Barnabus was born in & led the church in Cyrprus and he also was killed there


6 - The Journey Continues - Pamphylia, Galatia & Asia Minor

* Paul, Barnabus, and John Mark continue their travels together

* John Mark soon leaves, but Paul & Barnabus continue

* "run the race" in 1 Corinthians made real sense because of the races that were run at that time

* in Iconium there were statues - one of Jonah and the great fish, which was a secret symbol for the christians to represent Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection


7 - The Jerusalem Council & Paul's Second Missionary Journey

* there was an argument among the Jewish council about whether the Gentile believers should have to follow the Mosaic law of the Jews

* Paul and Barnabus argued that they should be completely accepted into the church without the Mosaic law because it was completed with the death and resurrection of Jesus

* James, Jesus' half brother, was the leader of the church in Jerusalem

* Paul and Silas travel together while Barnabus takes John Mark with him

* Timothy is introduced as a resident of Lystra & he went with Paul as his student


8- The Second Journey Continues - Philippi the Thessalonica

* Neopolis was a port city where Brutus and Casius murdered Julius Caesar then conquered by, soon to be, emperor Augustus

* Philip II and Alexander the Great conquered it and called it Philippi

* we saw an ancient public bathroom

* Lydia purple dye "business" was on an inscription of stone about purple dyers proves Luke's historical account

* Paul writes Philippians to the people of Philippi


9 - A Road Trip to Athens

* Bereans eagerly listened to Paul, but also examined the scriptures themselves - good lesson for us all

* we see Mount Olympus

* Dave dressed in Spartan armor

* Mars Hill was a judicial area and place for people to meet and discuss ideas


10 - Ancient Corinth

* polished metal "mirrors" gave a distorted view & Paul used this to talk about how we will someday see our true selves

* Corinth Canal was 4 miles through the isthmus of Corinth. In 1893, with the invention of dynamite, it was finished because there was a lot of rock to cut through

* Eruastus the Treasurer inscribed in stone and in the Biblical account 


11 - Paul's Third Missionary Journey - Ephesus

* many Jews lived in Ephesus

* library of Kelsus held 12,000 scrolls and the tomb of Kelsus (it was the 3rd largest in ancient world)

* Paul was still selling tent to pay for his missionary work

* magic and astrology were normal life then

* Artemis and her followers were all over the city of Ephesus


12 - Paul's Final Trip to Jerusalem & Caesarea

* Paul kept starting riots in Jerusalem when he would defend his actions & the Roman soldiers kept having to protect him from the Jewish crowd

* a graphic of military levels as well as a Roman uniform

* first man made harbor

* Paul is then sent away from Judea


13 - Adventures at Sea - the Island of Malta

* see the kind of ship that Paul was on to Rome

* see what Paul went through in the wreck by Malta

* people that lived on the island spoke a language that was close to ancient Hebrew so Paul would have been able to carry on a conversation with them


14 - A Final Journey to Rome

* driving on a 2,000 year old road

* Rome had the most citizens for a long time

* explained where Paul lived for his house arrest while he was waiting for his trial


15 - The Martyrdom of Paul & Peter

* warning about some violence before episode

* Nero's fire

* Circus Maximus held 150,000 used for games and races, but was also for killing christians

* they think that they have actually found Peter's tomb

* ancient prison where Paul would spend his last days


16 - John and Island of Patmos

* boat ride was goofy and the boys loved it

* Patmos was an island that was like a "prison island", but it had a town and other things as well going on

* see the cave where John received the visions for Revelation


17 - The Seven Churches of Revelation

* see the places of the 7 churches in Revelation

* the Pergamum temple was completely transported to Berlin, Germany

* Thyratira is the home of Lydia


18 - The Book Closes on the New Testament Period

* Laodicia had a water system that was luke warm to drink. This fits with what John said to them about not being hot or cold

* known for their eye care and had an oinment that John referred to

* 2013 was the 700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan making Christianity legal

* Colossae has never been excavated

* three bombs hit a church on Malta during a church service - two of them reflected off of the dome and one pierced the top and landed inside of the church during service and none of them exploded

* recap of each of the 27 books of the New Testament and where they were written on the map


I don't know if you could tell, but we really liked the Drive Thru History® "Acts to Revelation" series by Drive Thru History®. This is something that we want to keep and watch again. It has so much information that you don't get all of it the first time you watch it. As the boys get older, and as our littlest bundle of joy grows up, these will be a wonderful resource for our family!

Go and check out what the other reviewers thought!

Just click on the picture below!


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