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A New Evangelical Manifesto: A Kingdom Vision for the Common Good Paperback – August 30, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

The word prophetic is tossed around rather promiscuously these days, but
A New Evangelical Manifesto truly deserves to be seen in light of that long
tradition of calling religious people to reflection, responsibility and action.
It gathers together an extraordinarily thoughtful group of men and women
who consider the central political questions with both eloquence and
clarity. --E. J. DIONNE, syndicated columnist and author of Our Divided Political Heart

An urgent, important manifesto. You need not agree with everything here to
recognize this volume as a ringing summons to more faithfully follow Jesus call
to radical discipleship. Precisely those who confess that Jesus is true God and
true man must always be eager to repent of ways that fallen culture has seduced
Christians into abandoning Jesus' radical teaching. This book helps us do that. --RONALD J. SIDER, Eastern University and Evangelicals for Social Action

Not only a sweeping view of the profound changes among America s evangelicals
but also a vision of how social change should proceed that is nothing less than
an inspiration for all America... It should once and for all dash stereotypes of
evangelicals. Indeed, those interested in policies leading to a less fractious and
violent future must seriously consider the ideas in this book. --MARCIA PALLY, New York University, author of The New Evangelicals: Expanding the Vision of the Common Good

About the Author

David P. Gushee is the Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics at Mercer University. Raised in Virginia, he earned his Bachelor of Arts at the College of William and Mary (1984), Master of Divinity at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (1987) and both the Master of Philosophy (1990) and Doctor of Philosophy (1993) at Union Theological Seminary in New York. And he recently received an honorary Doctor of Divinity (D.D.) from the John Leland Center for Theological Studies. Dr. Gushee came to Mercer in 2007 from Union University, where he served for 11 years. He has published eleven books, over 90 scholarly essays, book chapters, articles, and reviews, and hundreds of magazine articles and opinion pieces.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Chalice Press (August 30, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 082720034X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0827200340
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6.1 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,411,657 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

If those people actually existed, this book might have some value.
Namyriah
This collection of new evangelicals might have a social vision, but I didn't find enough pertaining to a living God--just a different set of commands.
Benjamin A. Simpson
Also, please stop calling yourselves "evangelicals" when you aren't.
J. S. Lang

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Benjamin A. Simpson VINE VOICE on December 20, 2012
Format: Paperback
If you think the word evangelical is a cuss word, you are not alone. If you're an evangelical and you think the word is a cuss word, then you aren't alone. And those writing in A New Evangelical Manifesto might provide you with a community. Led by David Gushee, this collection of essays provides plenty of grist for discussion and debate, as well as some practical steps for evangelicals who envision a different mode of political engagement within the public square of the United States. Read this book if you are looking for some surprising perspectives on global poverty, death and dying, torture, women's issues, sex trafficking, Christian-Muslim relations, and racism, especially if you think evangelicals are only worried about the new birth and a handful of other social concerns. Evangelicalism might be more diverse than you have previously imagined.

Other reviewers have noted that this book will not satisfy persons looking for a theologically sophisticated argument, but will appeal more broadly to those looking for new applications of spirituality. This is true. A New Evangelical Manifesto's greatest strength is its clarity in applicability. Anyone who reads this book will have much to talk about, whether it be the eradication of developing world poverty, the dismantling of nuclear weapons, the reduction of the practice of abortion (while not demonizing pro-choicers), and misogyny as a very real cultural and ecclesial problem. If you want to know what causes to advocate to be a "new evangelical," this book will provide you with clarity of vision.

However, a sound theology is critical for any praxis, any movement, that will continue to inspire action without devolving into moralism.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kolburt W. Schultz on February 28, 2013
Format: Paperback
One of the recent trends in American political life is the gaining momentum of the religious left. While there have always been those who dissented from the monologue of the religious right, the emergence of the millennial generation has seen liberal evangelicals gain more notice in popular church culture. One of the organizations that is advancing this leftist presentation of Christianity is the New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good (NEP). This past year they released an edited volume containing their proposal for a Christian engagement with politics, A New Evangelical Manifesto: A Kingdom Vision for the Common Good. And while this work can be frustratingly far-left in orientation, it does demonstrate what this growing slice of evangelicalism sees as the defining issues of our time.

To a large extent the purpose of this book is to repair some of the damage the religious right has done to our public witness. As the millennial generation comes of age they are turned off by the incessant culture warring of many on the right and are naturally drawn to the "center-left" agenda of organizations like the NEP (See, Introduction, p. x). Of course, after reading A New Evangelical Manifesto, it is difficult to see how they could consider themselves "center" anything. In general, this book presents the classic liberal arguments that we have seen from organizations such as Sojourners and Evangelicals for Social Action.

The reader will doubtlessly find A New Evangelical Manifesto to be a mixed bag. Some of the contributions are surprisingly insightful and represent the best of evangelical scholarship (such as the chapter by David Gushee on torture), while other chapters are frustratingly narrow and agenda driven.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lost in Vegas on November 30, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this volume very uneven. The chapters were written by 12 or 15 different writers, all involved in one way or another with a liberal form of evangelical Christianity and an aspect of citizen activism. Some of the chapters presented a case for a particular Christian response to a problem and specific ways Christians might respond to the problem. Others were more theoretical and not always very deep or helpful. I think good intentions were certainly behind the creation of this book, but the editor should have been more careful in choosing the writers and editing the submissions.
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Format: Paperback
Overall, this is a good introduction to the current state of affairs in the small “new” Evangelical Movement. As I gather this is the branch of Evangelicalism that is opposed to the co-opting of Christianity by the political Right and the literal fundamentalists. I enjoyed reading it even though I am not particularly attached to their cause, which I will explain more about below. There is actually a lot of diversity in the book. Everything from the “hot button” issues like War and Abortion to more mundane (but important) things like the pragmatics of theology and the future of the Church. Perhaps my favorite parts were the authors who began their topic with a personal story. Some of these are quite interesting in and of themselves such as the article by Richard Cizik, former leader in the National Association of Evangelicals.
I will confess that I got this book for free and so didn’t really know what it was until I dove into it, and as I opined above, I am glad I did. However, I do not agree with the ideological thread of the book which seems to be something like “Evangelical Christianity can be saved through adjustments.” Although I certainly prefer this “new” brand of Christianity to the know-nothing fundamentalists that have infiltrated the churches, I still do not think it gets at the core problem. The real problem for Christianity isn’t just the interpretation of the Bible and Politics, it is the CORE MYTH that is the problem. Thomas Altizer was closer to a real solution when he suggested in 1965 that the God of the bible was “dead” to our culture. The central myth was no longer believable to modern humans.
Thus this isn’t really a book about the “liberals” of theology in the turn of the century sense or the Spong/Borg sense (to cite modern examples).
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