The second half of 2021 promises a ton of excellent new books! Here are 45 of our most anticipated books of Fall 2021 for Christian Readers…
These anticipated books of Fall 2021 (released in the second half of the year) wrestle with some of the deepest challenges of our day, and will guide us toward faithful living in the present and in years to come.
*** Love Books? Sign up now for our email newsletter and get all the best book news, reviews, and sales in your inbox! (PLUS, get a free ebook for signing up…)
Page 2: TOP 10 – Part 2
(In Alphabetical Order by Author’s Last Name)
Good Works: Hospitality and Faithful Discipleship
Christine Pohl / Keith Wasserman
(Eerdmans, July 2021)
For over forty years, the community of Good Works, Inc., has shared life with its neighbors in rural southeastern Ohio, a region with high poverty rates and remarkably resilient people. Offering friendship to those without a support network and shelter, care, and community to people without homes, those involved with Good Works have made it their mission to embody the gospel in innovative ways. What insights can be gleaned from Good Works, and how might these lessons be applied to our own communities and churches?
Keith Wasserman, the founder and executive director of Good Works, and Christine Pohl, a scholar of hospitality who has written extensively on church and mission, explore challenging insights from the story of Good Works and how it has grown over the years into a unique expression of discipleship in the body of Christ. At the heart of this community’s story are connection and mutuality. Good Works functions not as a charity or social service agency but as a place where everyone has the opportunity to both serve and be served. And although worship is a central paradigm for life at Good Works, Keith and the leaders of the community regularly partner with non-Christians from all walks of life who desire to help.
Christians who hunger for lifegiving involvement in their local communities—wherever they might be, and in whichever circumstances—will find inspiration and guidance in this quiet but powerful Appalachian ministry. Short prayers and questions for reflection at the end of each chapter make this a book to be studied and shared among those who know that love of God and neighbor is the starting point, but who aren’t sure where to go from there.
When Thoughts and Prayers Aren’t Enough: A Shooting Survivor’s Journey into the Realities of Gun Violence
(IVP Books, July 2021)
Taylor Schumann never thought she’d be a victim of gun violence. But one spring day a man with a shotgun walked into her workplace and opened fire on her. While she survived, she was left with permanent wounds, both visible and invisible. In When Thoughts and Prayers Aren’t Enough, Taylor invites us to see what it means to be a survivor after the news vehicles drive away and the media moves on. Healing is slow and complicated. As she suffered through surgeries, grueling rehabilitation, and counseling to repair the physical injuries and emotional trauma, she came face to face with the deep and lasting impact of gun violence. As she began grappling with the realities, Taylor experienced another painful truth: Christians have largely been absent from this issue. Gun violence undercuts God’s vision of abundant life and community―and the silence of the church rings loudly in the ears of survivors and families of victims. Taylor weaves her own incredible story of survival and recovery into a larger conversation about gun violence in our country. With compassion and honesty, she encourages readers to reconsider their own engagement with the issue and to join her in envisioning a more hopeful, safer future for our nation. Move beyond thoughts and prayers and enter into grace-filled dialogue and action.
Shoutin’ in the Fire: An American Epistle
(Convergent Books, October 2021)
In Shoutin’ in the Fire, Danté Stewart gives breathtaking language to his reckoning with the legacy of white supremacy—both the kind that hangs over our country and the kind that is internalized on a molecular level. Stewart uses his personal experiences as a vehicle to reclaim and reimagine spiritual virtues like rage, resilience, and remembrance—and explores how these virtues might function as a work of love against an unjust, unloving world.
In 2016, Stewart was a rising leader at the predominantly white evangelical church he and his family were attending in Augusta, Georgia. Like many young church leaders, Stewart was thrilled at the prospect of growing his voice and influence within the community, and he was excited to break barriers as the church’s first Black preacher. But when Donald Trump began his campaign, so began the unearthing. Stewart started overhearing talk in the pews—comments ranging from microaggressions to outright hostility toward Black Americans. As this violence began to reveal itself en masse, Stewart quickly found himself isolated amid a people unraveled; this community of faith became the place where he and his family now found themselves most alone. This set Stewart on a journey—first out of the white church and then into a liberating pursuit of faith—by looking to the wisdom of the saints that have come before, including James H. Cone, James Baldwin, and Toni Morrison, and by heeding the paradoxical humility of Jesus himself.
This sharply observed journey is an intimate meditation on coming of age in a time of terror. Stewart reveals the profound faith he discovered even after experiencing the violence of the American church: a faith that loves Blackness; speaks truth to pain and trauma; and pursues a truer, realer kind of love than the kind we’re taught, a love that sets us free.
(Baker Academic, September 2021)
This book provides a comprehensive biblical and theological survey of the people of God in the Old and New Testaments, offering insights for today’s transformed and ethnically diverse church.
Jarvis Williams explains that God’s people have always been intended to be a diverse community. From Genesis to Revelation, God has intended to restore humanity’s vertical relationship with God, humanity’s horizontal relationship with one another, and the entire creation through Jesus. Through Jesus, both Jew and gentile are reconciled to God and together make up a transformed people.
Williams then applies his biblical and theological analysis to selected aspects of the current conversation about race, racism, and ethnicity, explaining what it means to be the church in today’s multiethnic context. He argues that the church should demonstrate redemptive kingdom diversity, for it has been transformed into a new community that is filled with many diverse ethnic communities.
(IVP Books, November 2021)
Is it possible to hold on to faith in an age of unbelief? Intellectual certainty has long been a cornerstone of the Christian faith. But in an age of secularism, skepticism, and cynicism, our worldviews have been shaken. Various solutions exist―some double down on certainty, while others deconstruct their faith until there is nothing left at all. But Brian Zahnd offers a third way: what is needed is not a demolition but instead a renovation of faith. Written with personal and pastoral experience, Zahnd extends an invitation to move beyond the crisis of faith toward the journey of reconstruction. As the world rapidly changes in ways that feel incompatible with Christianity, When Everything’s on Fire provides much-needed hope. A stronger, more confident faith is possible when it is grounded in the beauty and truth of Christ. Zahnd permits us to risk the journey of deconstruction so that God can forge something more beautiful in its place.