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Can These Bones Live?: A Catholic Baptist Engagement with Ecclesiology, Hermeneutics, and Social Theory Paperback – August 1, 2008
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From the Back Cover
"Barry Harvey contends that Free churches in North America, and throughout the world, do not merely exist in a state of division. Like the dry bones of Ezekiel's vision, they lie scattered and lifeless. But this book is not merely an exercise in social criticism. It constructively shows how to understand what it might mean for Christ's dismembered body to be re-membered. Harvey's aim is to enable readers to imagine such a future so that they may desire it. If he is successful, there is yet hope for renewal."--Curtis W. Freeman, Duke University Divinity School
"In this masterful account of the contemporary church, Barry Harvey demonstrates the frightening relevance of God's question of Ezekiel to our day. His scholarship is profound, although he displays it gracefully, and his insights penetrating. While accurately describing the political, social, and economic forces that have severed the sinews of Christ's body, this marvelous work also represents a fresh breath of the Spirit, offering a rich account of the ecclesial practices that may yet clothe us with new life."--Elizabeth Newman, Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond
"This book serves up impressive scholarly breadth, grounded in many streams of the Christian tradition and argued in ways that remind all branches of the church of their best insights, instincts, and practices. Engaging social theory and politics, economic analysis and the humanities, Harvey offers an exciting and pastorally relevant ecclesiology grounded in scripture, tradition, and critical thinking. This book is valuable for students, scholars, clergy, and lay people interested in how we ended up in our current situation in matters of church, politics, and culture."--Michael L. Budde, DePaul University
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Top Customer Reviews
What kind of story is the Church in? Where are we in that story? What does it mean for us or for God's purposes that the Church is divided (or dismembered)? Where, then, do we stand?
Harvey seeks to find an answer to these questions by tracing the Church's journey: from early Christian apocalyptic to partnership with earthly powers (the `Constantinian shift'), through changes in eucharistic theology in the Middle Ages that led to the concept of the individual, to the modern and postmodern ages of where the nation-state (under the influence of democratic liberalism) mediates our public selves and where global capitalism fuels restless desire and consumption.
This book holds out a stubborn hope that transcends a very bleak world. Harvey doesn't pull any punches about the desperate state of the pilgrim people of God (dry bones). Nevertheless his engagement with ecclesiology, hermeneutics and social theory help us to find ourselves `out of control' in the true freedom that comes from holy vulnerability, and on our way to the eternal city of which we are true citizens.
I recommend this book very highly.