One of this week’s best new book releases is:
A review of
Paperback: Chalice Press, 2016
Buy Now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]
Reviewed by Ryan Johnson
Racism, violence, hatred, shootings. Headlines are filled with these injustices and most believe there is little hope to enact lasting change. For many this is the narrative of American society. This is the day-to-day life for millions of individuals. We are left asking the question what do we do? More than that: What are we called to do? This question leaves many of us without an answer, or with still more questions. It is a question that cannot live solely in the theoretical realm but must be lived out through practical action. Thus, Patrick Reyes’s book Nobody Cries When We Die serves as a step toward answering that question with the urgency it deserves.
A Brief Review of
Reviewed by Rafael Andres Rodriguez
A Christian Justice for the Common Good is Tex Sample’s quick primer for the community activist, clergy, layperson, and student seeking to engage the issues of justice from within a local church context. His treatment on the issues is interwoven with compelling narrative, reminding the reader that, in the words of John Milbank, “narrating is a more basic category than explanation or understanding.”[i] Within these pages is a mind deeply devoted to Jesus Christ as God’s self-disclosure, grappling with what it means to work for the good of all.
A Feature Review of
Reviewed by Kevin Book-Satterlee
Rah and VanderPol’s book is an important brief history of an undercurrent of biblical justice found in American evangelicalism. It is a history of struggle for recognition, and provides key snapshots in an album of this continued Return to Justice. The book is born from the authors’ obvious experience and study, and seeks to reintegrate the bifurcation of evangelism and justice. The authors highlight and esteem known figures and institutions such as John Perkins, World Vision, Sojourners, and Samuel Escobar, among others. These key figures and their stories formed the historical backdrop and narrative for reinvigorating biblical justice as a key tenet of evangelicalism, challenging a dominant American, white male, middle-class status quo that has historically recoiled from social gospel “tendencies” and issues of biblical justice in preference and focus towards an individualistic approach of evangelism-by-proclamation and personalized salvation experience.
A Review of
How the Death Penalty Killed Jesus and Why It’s Killing Us
Reviewed by Douglas Graves
Over the years, Shane Claiborne’s work and voice for social justice issues have challenged many in the church to reconsider the role of faith in their everyday lives. His latest book, Executing Grace: How the Death Penalty Killed Jesus and Why It’s Killing Us, is written in the same vein and certainly has the power to change many Christians’ perspectives on capital punishment. Surprisingly, the book has quite an optimistic ending, encouraging readers that the death penalty is on the run. But Claiborne does much more than simply dismiss any legitimacy still given to the death penalty. By telling stories of individuals behind the numbers and offering a refreshing view of God’s character and his expression of grace, Claiborne invites his readers to imagine a more fulfilling form of justice.
Here are a few videos in which Shane explores some of the key themes of the book. Don’t miss Shane’s conversation with Bryan Stephenson, author of our Best Book of 2014, Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption.
A Review of
Reviewed by Kevin Book-Satterlee
Young Latin scholars, René Padilla and Samuel Escobar stood before a sea of evangelical leaders at the first Lausanne International Congress in 1974 and reminded these leaders that while the proclamation of the Gospel continued to be a critical aspect of both local and global mission, it was insufficient without attending to biblical justice in local communities and around the world. By many, they were applauded. By many, they were derided. Today Padilla and Escobar’s message is embraced by many evangelicals, especially passionate youthful ones. The Justice Calling is a simple book that follows in the line of increasing succession to encouraging evangelicals towards justice. Proclamation is no less important now, but justice has claimed its rightful place in integrated tandem, letting the words of the mouth work in conjunction with the deeds of compassion.
Paperback: 3rd Edition, 2016
Buy now: [ Amazon ]
Reviewed by C. Christopher Smith
The Hebrew prophets described the flourishing that God intends for creation as shalom, which we could today translate as health in the deepest and most holistic sense. And nowhere is the lack of shalom more evident today than some of the most broken and economically-deprived places. We would do well to work toward to health and shalom of these places. Indeed, the Christian Community Health Fellowship (CCHF) has been working toward this end for almost 40 years, and they have just released the third edition of their helpful book Upholding the Vision, which articulates why working for the health of our poorer neighbors is vital, Kingdom work.
At the top of our list of new book releases to watch for this week, was this book:
(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)
By Bethany Hanke Hoang and Kristen Deede Johnson