Archives For Andy Crouch


This excellent new book by Andy Crouch was released this week!

In honor of its release,
we’re giving away

FIVE copies of this new book…

The Tech-Wise Family:
Everyday Steps for Putting Technology in Its Proper Place
by Andy Crouch
Hardback: Baker Books


WATCH the trailer video
for this new book!


Enter Now to win a copy of this book!

(It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3!) :

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Watch the book trailer video for one of 
this week’s best new book releases:

The Tech-Wise Family:
Everyday Steps for Putting Technology in Its Proper Place

Andy Crouch

Hardback: Baker Books, 2017
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]


A great conversation introducing the book…
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Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)


Mother Tongue: How Our Heritage Shapes Our Story

Leonard Sweet

Read a review from Hearts and Minds Books


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Up and to the Right

A Feature Review of 

Strong and Weak: Embracing a Life of Love, Risk and True Flourishing
Andy Crouch

Hardback: IVP Books, 2016
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]  [  Kindle ]
Reviewed by Ryan Johnson
In the heart of every woman and man there is an acute understanding that we were created for flourishing.  Equally present, however, is a devastating realization that we have failed to realize that purpose.  One needs only point to the exploitation of young children by traffickers or the amassing of wealth at the expense of others to prove the point.  The subsequent effect on our neighborhoods and communities is heart-wrenching.  The critic and prophet share the ability to bring these things to light.  The difference, however, is that the critic ends with this illumination while the prophet goes on to offer a message of hope and a vision for change.  This is what Andy Crouch has done so well in each of his previous books, Culture Making and Playing God.  This is what he does again in this important book, Strong and Weak.

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We aren’t big advocates of Black Friday madness, but these deals on Kindle ebooks will provide great reading for your and your friends in the coming year.

Stay home today and download a classic or two…

UPDATE: Sunday, Dec. 1, Prices listed here are still valid…
(A couple of these are still on sale, but prices have been tweaked)


Culture Making: Recovering Our Creative Calling 

By Andy Crouch  –  $2.99
IVP Books

[Read an interview with Andy about this book ]

Andy Crouch unleashes a stirring manifesto calling Christians to be culture makers. For too long, Christians have had an insufficient view of culture and have waged misguided “culture wars.” But we must reclaim the cultural mandate to be the creative cultivators that God designed us to be. Culture is what we make of the world, both in creating cultural artifacts as well as in making sense of the world around us. By making chairs and omelets, languages and laws, we participate in the good work of culture making.


The Fault in Our Stars: A Novel

By John Green  – $2.99

“In The Fault in Our Stars, John Green has created a soulful novel that tackles big subjects–life, death, love–with the perfect blend of levity and heart-swelling emotion. Hazel is sixteen, with terminal cancer, when she meets Augustus at her kids-with-cancer support group. The two are kindred spirits, sharing an irreverent sense of humor and immense charm, and watching them fall in love even as they face universal questions of the human condition–How will I be remembered? Does my life, and will my death, have meaning?–has a raw honesty that is deeply moving.”  –


The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited

By Scot McKnight – $1.99

Evangelicals have reduced the gospel to the message of personal salvation. This book makes a plea for us to recover the old gospel as that which is still new and still fresh. The book stands on four arguments: that the gospel is defined by the apostles in 1 Corinthians 15 as the completion of the Story of Israel in the saving Story of Jesus; that the gospel is found in the Four Gospels; that the gospel was preached by Jesus; and that the sermons in the Book of Acts are the best example of gospeling in the New Testament. The King Jesus Gospel ends with practical suggestions about evangelism and about building a gospel culture.


A Wrinkle in Time

By Madeleine L’Engle – $1.79

Winner of the 1963 Newbery Award

Everyone in town thinks Meg is volatile and dull-witted and that her younger brother Charles Wallace is dumb. People are also saying that their father has run off and left their brilliant scientist mother. Spurred on by these rumors, Meg and Charles Wallace, along with their new friend Calvin, embark on a perilous quest through space to find their father. In doing so they must travel behind the shadow of an evil power that is darkening the cosmos, one planet at a time.

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Different Sorts of Power at Work?
A Feature Review of

Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power

Andy Crouch

Hardback: IVP, 2013
Buy now:   [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]
is also now available in a paperback edition…

Reviewed by John Nugent.


WATCH A VIDEO of Andy Crouch discussing this book

When it comes to power, Christians often gravitate toward one of two familiar poles. One holds that power is a neutral tool that can be used for good or ill. Recognizing its usefulness in getting things done and making the world a better place, this position seeks power and strives to wield it well.


The other clings to Lord Acton’s famous nineteenth century dictum: “power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Acknowledging the damage that power-wielding people routinely inflict upon those around them, this position eschews power and either gives up on making a difference in the world or seeks “power free” methods for effecting change.

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New ERB Print IssueThe new ERB print issue went to the printer now and will be released at the CCDA annual conference next week in New Orleans…

(Subscribers copies will mail in a little over a week, after CCDA is finished).

Featuring an interview with Andy Crouch about his new book PLAYING GOD and an essay by Jon Sweeney on Kierkegaard at 200. And a superb lineup of reviews: new books by Fred Bahnson, David Rakoff, David Bentley Hart, Nadia Bolz-Weber, and MORE!  Plus, three poems from Brian Volck‘s forthcoming collection: Flesh Becomes Word.


*** NOT A SUBSCRIBER? The ERB Print Edition is the best source for book-related interviews and news for Christian readers!

CLICK HERE to subscribe: $18.95 for 1 Year (4 issues) / $35 for 2 Years (8 issues)



Click the cover image above to view a larger version.

Below you will find the ERB Table of Contents for this issue…

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Here is a nice video of Andy Crouch talking with John Wilson of Books and Culture about his forthcoming book:

Playing God: Redeeming the Gift of Power
Andy Crouch

Hardback: IVP Books, 2013
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]

My own interview with Andy Crouch about the book will appear in our next print issue.  Are you a subscriber?

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A Generative Excess in Reality

A Review of
For the Beauty of the Church:
Casting a Vision for the Arts

W. David O. Taylor, editor.

Reviewed by Brent Aldrich.

For the Beauty of the Church:
Casting a Vision for the Arts

W. David O. Taylor, editor.
Paperback: Baker Books, 2010.
Buy Now: [ ]

“Beauty is simply reality itself, perceived in a special way that gives it a resplendent value of its own. Everything that is, is beautiful insofar as it is real… The genius of the artist finds its way by the affinity of creative sympathy, or conaturality into the living law that rules the universe. ”

— Thomas Merton, from No Man is an Island

For the Beauty of the ChurchThese lines from Merton’s essay “Conscience, Freedom, and Prayer” have seemed to me to be the most generous description of art as anything I’ve come across: it is expansive and encompassing (“everything…insofar as it is real”) and it binds art to the rest of life, and not just life, but life in its reality, (a “resplendent value of its own”). This broad vision for art (which I will try to expand further) is in contrast to theories of aesthetics, of work, of theology, of ecclesiology, etc., that are marked by limitation and fragmentation. What Merton does so wonderfully is to affirm that none of these can be separated; God is at work reconciling all things, and in our human arts we participate in that work. The reconciliation of all things seems to be the starting place for any vision for ‘the arts’ or for the church.

For the Beauty of the Church: Casting a Vision for the Arts is a new collection of essays edited by W. David O. Taylor, and birthed out of the “Transforming Culture” conference in Austin, bringing together artists and pastors to talk about the church and the arts. The eight essays in this book, from writers such as Andy Crouch, Eugene Peterson, and Jeremy Begbie, traverse often very different perspectives on said topic, from Andy Crouch’s chapter which offers a broad view of culture-making, to what seems to be more of an emphasis on some sort of “arts ministry,” whether it’s directly called that or not. That said, I have a hard time engaging with very many of these essays because of an underlying vision of art, church, worship, and work that is too narrow. I want to be careful because I do appreciate that these conversations are being had, but I hope to stir imaginations beyond ‘ministries’ or ‘outreach;’ beyond the once-a-week ‘worship service;’ and beyond making “Christian” a marketable adjective.

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Review of Merold Westphal’s
Whose Community? Which lnterpretation?
From Christian Scholars’ Review

Whose Community? Which Interpretation? belongs to a series by Baker Academic called “The Church and Postmodern Culture.” The editor, James K. A. Smith, provides the rationale for reading Merold Westphal’s contribution: “For ‘peoples of the Book’ whose way of life is shaped by texts, matters of interpretation are, in a way, matters of life and death” (9). Based on “To Read or Not to Read,” a2007 report from the National Endowment of the Arts, we are living in a post-literate or sub-literate culture where, it is safe to conjecture, the biblical text plays a diminutive role in the formation of Christian identity.  Friedrich Nietzsche’s once controversial claim-“there are no facts, only interpretations”-seems irrelevant in the absence of a text to interpret.

For the remnant of Bible-reading Christians, “matters of interpretation are, in a way, matters of life and death” (italics added). Do not miss the qualifying clause. While we are no longer witnesses to the violence behind sixteenth-century Protestant and Catholic persecution of Anabaptists, such violence is sublimated behind present-day Orthodox anathemas of iconoclasts or Emergent denunciations of Calvinist creeds. In short, interpretative practice
often fosters animus among brothers and sisters in the household of faith.

Read the full review:

Whose Community? Which lnterpretation?
Merold Westphal.

Paperback: Baker Books, 2009.
Buy Now: [ ]

Andy Crouch Reviews Two Recent Books on
World Christianity and American churches

Both Robert Wuthnow’s and Mark Noll’s new books puncture a number of commonplaces about global Christianity and America’s place in it, although they do so from notably different angles. Wuthnow is an eminent sociologist of religion who possesses a formidable capacity for memory and analysis combined with an abundance of research assistants. He synthesizes a vast amount of background reading, original research, and reinterpretations of standard datasets to survey the ways American Christians currently relate to the wider world.

One of Wuthnow’s stated aims in Boundless Faith is to refute what he calls the “Global Christianity paradigm,” a narrative of Western Christian decline and Southern ascent that has given rise to many of the hasty conclusions summarized above. (Inevitably, Wuthnow finds the source of this paradigm in Philip Jenkins’ influential book The Next Christendom, though Jenkins does not focus nearly as much on Western decline as readers of Wuthnow might be led to believe.) Wuthnow musters evidence from far and wide to push back strongly against the idea that the United States is a fading force in global Christianity. To the contrary, wherever his sociologist’s gimlet eye turns, whether to sources of funds, centers of theological education, or activities of local church members, he finds continued American activity and influence, and in many ways he finds that American Christians may be more internationally minded than they have ever been.

Read the full review: