Archives For Church

 

Healthy Acts of Resistance
 
A Review of
 

Sacred Signposts:
Words, Water, and Other Acts of Resistance

Benjamin Dueholm

Paperback: Eerdmans, 2018.
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]
 
Reviewed by D.S. Leiter
 
 
Sacred Signposts is by a minister in the mainline Lutheran tradition. As such, the book is organized according to the “sacred possessions” of the church offered by reformer Martin Luther: words; water; a meal of bread and wine; confession and forgiveness; ministry; prayer, praise, and worship; and the cross and suffering.

Dueholm seeks to make an argument that these traditions are worth continuing. At times he makes a good case. For instance, I dearly loved that the author pointed out that the biblical creation story is the only known creation narrative that creates the world through speech. And I really loved some of the ways he talked about the need for repentance, especially by the white church.

Continue Reading…

 

An Army of Eloquent Magdalenes
 
A Feature Review of
 

The Magdalene
in the Reformation.

Margaret Arnold.

 
Harvard University Press, 2018
Buy Now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]

 
Reviewed by Lynn Domina
 
 
Mary Magdalene is one of the most paradoxical and puzzling characters in the gospels, four books admittedly filled with paradoxical and puzzling characters. She is admired and vilified, held up as a model of faithfulness and denigrated as an exemplar of women’s sexual sinfulness. Much contemporary and historical interpretation of her role, though, depends on readers conflating Mary Magdalene with Mary of Bethany (sister of Martha and Lazarus) and with the repentant sinner who washed Jesus’ feet with her tears. Such conflation is understandably tempting, given how little the Bible says about any of these women, if not entirely logical. In The Magdalene in the Reformation, Margaret Arnold provides an excellent analysis of interpretations of Mary Magdalene from the end of the medieval period through the Reformation.

Continue Reading…

 

To Baptize or Not to Baptize
 
A Review of 
 

It Takes a Church to Baptize:
What the Bible Says about Infant Baptism
Scot McKnight

 
Paperback: Brazos Press, 2018
Buy Now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]
 
Reviewed by Ryan Johnson
 
 
It took only a few hours, but my life changed with one small event: the birth of my son, Judah. As it is with any new parent, I wrestled with many questions. Cloth diapers or disposable? Breastfeeding or formula? Which pediatrician should we got to? As a Christian, I face another question as well: Baptism or dedication? The last of these is of course a theological question, and a debated one at that. More accurately, the debate lies around infant baptism or believer baptism, where my own position has always favored the latter. So, when one of my favorite authors and theologians chooses to write a book in defense of infant baptism, I was eager to see what he had to say.

Continue Reading…

 

Occupying and Holding Space Together
as Church Communities

A Review of 

Seeing Jesus in East Harlem:
What Happens When Church Show Up and Stay Put

José Humphreys

Paperback: IVP Books, 2018.
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

 
Reviewed by Bob Cornwall

 

*** This review originally appeared 
on the reviewer’s website.
It is reprinted here with permission.
Browse his website for other excellent reviews!

 
I am the pastor of a predominantly white suburban church that once lived in Detroit. This church moved to the suburbs, as did other congregations in the city, because most of the members had moved to the suburbs. The congregation tried to stay put, but in the end, it made better sense for the now diminished congregation to let another congregation make use of the historic building. The choice was probably correct, but I am attuned to stories of being present in the community. To be honest, suburban communities need congregations to be show up and stay put as well, so as to demonstrate God’s love and grace, as well as challenging the status quo. Forty years after the move, this congregation is trying to stay put in the community we were replanted.
Continue Reading…

 

Fleming Rutledge’s new book on Advent is extraordinary!
 

Advent:
The Once and Future Coming of Jesus Christ

Fleming Rutledge

Paperback: Eerdmans, 2018
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]
 
 

*** Watch for our review of this book
in our Advent 2018 magazine issue
[ SUBSCRIBE NOW
and be sure to get this issue ]

 
 

Watch this brief video of Fleming Rutledge
talking about the meaning of Advent…

Continue Reading…

 

Questioning and Thanking and
Running and Falling and
Searching and Rebuilding

A Review of

Once You Go In:
A Memoir of Radical Faith
Carly Gelsinger

Paperback: She Writes Press, 2018
Buy Now: [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

 
Reviewed by June Mears Driedger

 

When God created Adam God declared it was not good for man to be alone, so Eve was created to ease Adam’s loneliness. The Old Testament is the story of individuals creating community with God and with one another. It is natural for us to long to belong to others whether this is within families, neighborhoods, sports team fandom, or within a faith tradition. We want to belong.

Continue Reading…

 

One of this week’s best new book releases is: 
 

Seeing Jesus in East Harlem:
What Happens When Churches Show up and Stay Put
José Humphreys

 
Paperback: IVP Books, 2018
Buy Now: [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]
 
 
 

Listen to an interview that the author did with
The Prophetic Resistance Podcast:

Continue Reading…

 

Weaving a Life of
Relationship and Experience

A review of

Mentoring: Biblical, Theological, and Practical Perspectives
Dean K. Thompson /
D. Cameron Murchison, Eds.

Foreword by Jill Duffield
Afterword by Martin Marty

Paperback: Eerdmans, 2018
Buy Now: [ Amazon ]
 
Reviewed by Jennifer Burns Lewis
 
Every now and then one encounters a resource that provides a treasure trove of information and perspectives that enhances one’s ministry and life. Mentoring is just such a resource. Educators, parents, seminary staff, field education supervisors, spiritual directors, coaches, denominational leaders and everyone called to nurture and encourage relationships with emerging Christian leaders — as well as the emerging leaders themselves — will find thoughtful reflections from multiple angles as they seek to mentor, understand the mentoring process, or assist those merging leaders in identifying great mentors.

Continue Reading…

 

To Argue Lovingly 

A Feature Review of 

A House United:
How the Church Can Save the World

Allen Hilton

Paperback: Fortress, 2018
Buy Now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

 

Reviewed by Justin Cober-Lake

 

As the US has become increasingly divided, some Christians have rightly sought to show the rest of the world a unified group. Some have suggested, however, that that unity should include no public disagreements, that the world should see a church together in mind as well as heart. We’d have a better witness if we didn’t argue on Twitter, the thinking goes. Conversations concerning Paige Patterson and the Southern Baptist Convention have sometimes taken this tone, whether about letting those outside the SBC watch the chaos or even about how leadership problems could be handled.

Continue Reading…

 

Here are a some excellent theology* books that will be released this month:

* broadly interpreted, including ethics, church history, biblical studies, and other areas that intersect with theology

[ Last Month’s Theology Book List ]

Disruptive Witness: Speaking Truth in a Distracted Age 

Alan Noble

IVP Books

Continue Reading…