As Sure as the Dawn: Mark of the Lion Series Book 3 (Christian Historical Fiction Novel Set in 1st Century Rome)

by Francine Rivers

Paperback, 1998



Call number



Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (2002), Edition: Anniversary, 508 pages

Original publication date



Fiction. Romance. Christian Fiction. Historical Fiction. HTML:Book 3 in the 3-book historical Christian fiction series by the New York Times bestselling author of Redeeming Love and A Voice in the Wind. The thrilling conclusion to the Mark of the Lion series. With Hadassah confined to the cells below the arena, facing death once again, and his sister Julia dying of a strange new illness and longing for a forgiveness beyond her reach, Marcus goes in search of God. Meanwhile, Atretes, the Germanic warrior, vows to move heaven and earth to find his son�the baby he thought was dead and whose life Hadassah saved�and take him back to Germania. Only one thing stands in his way: Rizpah, a Christian widow who has cared for the baby since his birth. Atretes did not count on Rizpah's fiery resistance to having "her son" taken away, nor is he prepared for the woman's strength and beauty. From their first meeting, the two are caught in a stormy battle of wills. Includes discussion questions suitable for individual use or group discussions. "Once more, Rivers transcends the genre." �Booklist, starred review "Francine unlocks the longing in each one of us to connect to God in a deeper, life-changing way. No one reading her books will ever be the same again." �Debbie Macomber "As we 'watch' Hadassah and Atretes struggle through first-century trials, we learn how to handle similar situations in the twenty-first century. The 'costumes' may vary, but our Lord does not change." �Angela Hunt "Francine redefined Christian fiction�honest, unflinching, powerful, life-changing�demonstrating why storytelling is the most effective way to communicate God's truth. Every Christian novelist writing today owes a debt of gratitude to Francine Rivers for lighting the way." �Liz Curtis Higgs "Francine Rivers writes from her heart to touch the hearts of her readers. Her books are essential reading for all who love Christian fiction." �Bodie Thoene "Francine Rivers puts readers right into the history of the moment." �Romantic Times.… (more)


RITA Award (Finalist — Inspirational Romance — 1996)


Original language


Physical description

508 p.; 8.8 inches





User reviews

LibraryThing member parus55
Book #3 in the Mark of the Lion series. My mom gave me the three books in this series, and I was pleasantly surprised. I don't generally read Christian fiction, but Rivers pulled me into the story...takes place shortly after Jesus' crucifixion when a young Christian girl is sold to a rich Roman
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family as a slave. Her Christianity eventually touches the entire a variety of ways. A good read.
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LibraryThing member reeread
A gripping story of Atretes, a gladiator who has won his freedom and been granted Roman citizenship. Atretes discovers his baby son is alive after being led to believe he was left to die on the rocks. He is also being coerced into returning to fight as a gladiator. His refusal angers those in
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positions of power and influence. This, and the desire to return to his homeland in Germania, prompts him to leave Ephesus with his baby son, Caleb, and Rizpah, a widow who lost her own baby and was given Caleb to care for by the Apostle John. They travel some of the way in the company of Christians who also leave Ephesus because of persecution. From Rome, Atretes, Caleb and Rizpah travel in the company of Theophilus, a former Roman centurion and Christian.
Their journey is eventful and the battle of spiritual forces in Atretes' village makes compelling reading.
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LibraryThing member Sabrina_Davidson
Fantastic conclusion to a great trilogy.
LibraryThing member Lynngood
Following A Voice in the Wind and An Echo in the Darkness, As Sure as the Dawn continues the chronilcles of Hadassah, a Christian slave woman living during the height of the Roman Empire.
I heart this series.
LibraryThing member silva_44
If it were possible, I would rate this series a six! Absolutely, positively excellent!!!!!! My faith has been strengthened so much, and I thank God that He still speaks through people like Francine Rivers. I highly recommend this series!!
LibraryThing member pluto6490
I really enjoyed this book. Atretes was the superhero of everyone's dream. Buff and strong yet the soft side. I have to say that I did have a harder time getting into this book then the past two but once I was hooked there was no stopping. I have not read a Francine Rivers book that I haven't like
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LibraryThing member GrannyNanny
This third book of the series was not as good as the first two. I didn't care for the character Atretes at all. My favorite characters were Hadassah and Marcus. But overall, this was the best series I have read!
LibraryThing member cool-mom-e
I didn't initally read this book because I thought how in the world could it compare to the first two books of the series. Man was I wrong! It was SOOO good. This series is by far the best I have ever read. It is rare for a fiction book to speak to someone so clearly. However, I found God speakly
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clearly to me through out this book. I highly recommend this series to young adults and adults.
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LibraryThing member Phoeby
Amazing story
LibraryThing member HeatherLINC
Sadly, the "Mark of the Lion "series comes to an end. Hadassah and Marcus don't appear in this book at all. Instead the focus is on Atretes, the German warrior who was captured and sold as a Roman gladiator, and who played such an important role in A Voice in the Wind.

I loved following Atretes'
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journey from Rome back to Germany since gaining his freedom, however, he wasn't my favourite character. Intead, Theophilus, the Roman centurion, won that title. He brought humour and wisdom to this book and was certainly a calming influence on the hot-headed gladiator.

"As Sure as the Dawn" provided a strong, moving conclusion to an incredible series. Thank you, Ms Rivers.
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LibraryThing member EstherFilbrun
I’d heard some mixed reviews of this book before I picked it up, but since I was intrigued about Atretes’ story, I knew I wanted to read this one, regardless of other people’s opinions. It was an okay story, but not excellent, as I was hoping. Several scenes felt particularly sensual, and by
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the time I got about two-thirds of the way through the story, it was beginning to feel more and more contrived. Aside from those two disappointments, it was a good book, but I doubt I’d ever go back and re-read it. This is an intriguing view of first-century Christianity (although I do not agree with some of the Christians’ stances on self-defense), and what it may have been like to take the gospel to an unreached people group back then. From that perspective, I did enjoy the story. But it wasn’t all my cup of tea, unfortunately. It wasn’t my favorite Francine Rivers book ever, but I am looking forward to reading more of her stories in the future.
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LibraryThing member classyhomemaker
Just read this for the first time in over 10 years! I love this series, though I don't care for this book all that much. It's very negative throughout. I understand that's necessary but Atretes is so mean that it makes his nice moments unbelievable. Also, I was so bummed at the very last page she
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makes a HUGE historical error in saying Caleb went to minister to the Vikings. She's about 800 years off...ugh. As someone else pointed out, these were written pre-internet so she probably didn't have a lot of access to research materials. But that one is a pretty big leap in the historical timeline!

(My cover is different from the one pictured above. I have the one with the original artwork.)
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