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Book Reviews

North-South Relationships in the Global Church

Sister Churches, By Janel Kragt Bakker SISTER CHURCHES: AMERICAN CONGREGATIONS AND THEIR PARTNERS ABROAD JANEL KRAGT BAKKER OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS, 2013 320 PP. $26.96 Christianity is rooted in the Middle East and flourished in North Africa for centuries. Yet since the conversion of the Roman Empire to Christianity under Constantine in the fourth century it has been perceived as a Western religion, and for 17 centuries Christianity has been closely tied to the cultures and peoples of the North Atlantic.…
February 28, 2015
Book Reviews

N.T. Wright’s Copernican Revolution

Paul and the Faithfulness of God BOOK REVIEW PAUL AND THE FAITHFULNESS OF GOD N.T. WRIGHT FORTRESS PRESS, 2013 1519 PP. IN TWO VOLUMES $89.00 Bishop N.T. Wright has written a prodigious number of books. This book is his Summa, the most prodigious of them all. He’s been working on this book for decades, all while he was publishing his many other popular books, commentaries, articles and monographs. My own reading of the New Testament has been much altered by…
Daniel Meeter
January 10, 2015
Book Reviews

Reckoning with the Formation of the Bible

The Lost World of Scripture BOOK REVIEW THE LOST WORLD OF SCRIPTURE: ANCIENT LITERARY CULTURE AND BIBLICAL AUTHORITY JOHN H. WALTON AND D. BRENT SANDY IVP ACADEMIC, 2013 320 PP. $15.98 John H. Walton and D. Brent Sandy, Bible professors at Wheaton College, describe a scene that is undoubtedly common in biblical-studies classrooms on Christian campuses across the country: A student lingers after class to ask “the question” in hushed tones, fi rst looking around to make sure everyone else…
January 10, 2015
Book Reviews

Seeking Foundations of a New Consensus

THE TWILIGHT OF THE AMERICAN ENLIGHTEN-MENT: THE 1950S AND THE CRISIS OF LIBERAL BELIEF GEORGE MARSDEN BASIC BOOKS, 2014 $26.99. 264 PAGES. A specter haunts George Marsden: the specter of modern liberalism. What did it promise? How did it fail? What comes next? To explore these questions, Marsden’s essay on American public intellectual culture since the 1950s follows some famous middlebrow and scholarly writers—creators of America’s modern “liberal consensus”—into the 1960s. This era, Marsden argues, was the eve of the…
Michael Kugler
October 30, 2014
Book Reviews

Bytes and Belief

SHAPING A DIGITAL WORLD: FAITH, CULTURE AND COMPUTER TECHNOLOGY DEREK C. SCHUURMAN IVP ACADEMIC, 2013. $18.00. 138 PAGES. Derek Schuurman asks a question very similar to one asked by many of my computer science students: “What does my faith have to do with my work as an electrical engineer?” Of course, this question is relevant not only for Christians involved in working directly with computer technology but for people in all stations of life. Along with me, many students wrestle with the…
Mark Vellinga
October 30, 2014
Book Reviews

Revaluing the Funeral

THE GOOD FUNERAL: DEATH, GRIEF, AND THE COMMUNITY OF CARE THOMAS G. LONG AND THOMAS LYNCH WESTMINSTER JOHN KNOX PRESS, 2013 252 pp. $25.00 In the discipline of pastoral care and counseling, I believe there are three courses that students training for pastoral ministry should take. Of those three, one would be Death and Dying and the text, The Good Funeral: Death, Grief, and the Community of Care, coauthored by Thomas Long a pastoral theologian/ Presbyterian minister, and Thomas Lynch,…
Raynard Smith
October 30, 2014
Book Reviews

Child’s Play

PLAYING BEFORE THE LORD: THE LIFE AND WORK OF JOSEPH HAYDN CALVIN R. STAPERT EERDMANS, 2014 304 pp. $24 In the conventional wisdom about the Classical Era in Western art music, these three abide: Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven. And the greatest of these is Beethoven. As practices of music history and music consumption have changed, however, this narrative has been challenged. Music lovers of all levels have questioned its assumptions and values, making for a richer and more complex story.…
Suzanne Bratt
October 28, 2014
Book Reviews

Common Ground and a Big Table for All Citizens

EVANGELICALS ON PUBLIC POLICY ISSUES: SUSTAINING A RESPECTFUL POLITICAL CONVERSATION HAROLD HEIE ABILENE CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY PRESS, 2014 176 pp. $17.99 At my Christian university, political science majors make up less than 10 percent of the student body. When I talk to other students about voting, politics and faith, they tell me that they lack interest partly because of the nasty arguments. The religious right, Red Letter Christians arguing with the religious right, fighting about gay rights, refusal to take climate…
Julia K. Stronks
September 1, 2014
Book Reviews

Conflict and Covalent Bonds

Daniel Meeter This book is essential reading for those connected in any way to the Reformed Church in America. It fills a gap in the denomination's historiography, and its compelling analysis makes a first-rate case study of the travails of post-war American Protestantism. Lynn Japinga, who teaches religion at Hope College, has given us the story of 49 years, from the end of World War II to Wesley Granberg-Michaelson's debut as general secretary. Japinga has not intended a comprehensive history.…
Daniel Meeter
March 1, 2014