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Pub Theology: Beer, Conversation, and God Paperback – June 12, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 158 pages
  • Publisher: Wipf & Stock Pub (June 12, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1610974220
  • ISBN-13: 978-1610974226
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #803,122 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

''Bryan Berghoef has given us the most complete presentation to date of what pub theology is, why it exists, and what it contributes to the lives and faiths of an increasing number of Christians. With his conversationally written and accessible reportage, he has also created something close to a manual for those who want to initiate a pub theology circle or simply find and join one.''
--Phyllis Tickle, author of ''The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why''

''Some of the best theological conversations happen over a beer at the pub. Bryan Berghoef captures something of the relaxed and relational dynamic that makes these discussions so pleasurable, while at the same time wrestling with serious theological questions. So pull up a chair, order your favorite drink, and settle in with this delightful and stimulating book. Invite a friend as well--the conversation's just getting started.''
--John R. Franke, author of ''Manifold Witness: The Plurality of Truth''

''Pub Theology is a wonderful, whimsical, and wise story about what happens when a pastor with more questions than answers goes to the pub instead of church.''
--John Suk, author of ''Not Sure: A Pastor's Journey from Faith to Doubt'' and former editor of ''The Banner''

''This is a book about God's freedom and ours! Bryan Berghoef invites us to pull up a chair and dares us to converse about what matters. No fear! This engrossing and transformative story about how to live an open Christian life will save, stir, and strengthen the faith of many.''
--Samir Selmanovic, author of ''It's Really All About God: How Islam, Atheism, and Judaism Made Me a Better Christian'' --Wipf and Stock Publishers

From the Author

"My argument in this book is simple: good things happen when we sit down at the same table together and talk honestly about things that matter - and frankly, having a beer doesn't hurt."

More About the Author

Bryan Berghoef is a pastor, writer, and pub theologian. He writes and tweets from the nation's capital.

If you like beer, or talking with friends, or thinking deeply about spiritual and philosophical topics -- you'll like Bryan's writings, particularly his new book: "Pub Theology: Beer, Conversation, and God."

From the author: "My argument in this book is simple: good things happen when we sit down at the same table together and talk honestly about things that matter - and frankly, having a beer doesn't hurt."

Customer Reviews

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See all 16 customer reviews
Pub Theology - the practice, and the book - is mostly about talking.
Steve Ruble
This book opened my eyes to a bigger world - a world where God is living and active through all those created in His image.
Chad R. Schuitema
You'd hardly think you'd need to write a book about an idea like that.
Rob Kroese

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Rob Kroese on October 8, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Disclaimer: Bryan Berghoef is the husband of the cousin of a guy I went to college with. His kids swam in my pool and proclaimed it to be the best part of their California vacation. In exchange, Bryan gave me a copy of Pub Theology.

As I was reading Pub Theology, my thoughts alternated between, "Wow, this is such a great idea," and "Wow, this is so embarrassing." Allow me to explain.

Pub Theology is about an idea. The idea is this: let's get together with other people and talk about theology over beer. That's it. That's the whole idea. Not exactly rocket surgery, as I've been known to say after I've had a few beers myself. You'd hardly think you'd need to write a book about an idea like that. I mean, it's a fairly short book, but still. An idea like that needs a flyer, or maybe a pamphlet. Pamphlet is a really strange word. It's kind of creeping me out. Pamphlet. OK, moving on.

The embarrassing part is that I can see why Bryan did have to write this book. You see, in Christian circles, there's a long tradition of discussing theology. It works like this: we meet with a bunch of other Christians in the church social hall, open with prayer, have coffee and windmill cookies (type of cookies may vary by denomination), listen to a presentation by some recognized authority (generally a pastor) and then discuss the topic amongst ourselves for 22 minutes. Often there are breakout groups and worksheets involved. At the end, the leader presents the answers to the questions and we mark up our worksheets. Then we close with prayer. I daresay that most North American Christians have never seriously discussed theology in any environment that was not ultimately controlled by some religious authority (church, Sunday school, Christian school, Christian camp, etc.).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Enesta on December 17, 2012
Format: Paperback
Let me preface this review with the fact that I am by no means a Christian, nor a non-believer. A skeptic at heart, I came into the book and the concept of Pub Theology warily. I had never heard of Pub Theology or even met Bryan, but the book found me by chance.

That being said, it was a delightful read. He's wise beyond his years and brings us a message of love, understanding, and openness. Do not let the word 'theology' turn you off - it's relevant life-enriching information no matter your belief system. Whether you come into this as a veteran on the subject or as a fresh mind, you'll find value. Worst-case scenario it's a fun read on an interesting subject and a wonderful refresher. Best-case, you're going to start seeing things differently and come away with some very useful information.

I was invited to and attended a Pub Theology event while in midst of the book. If you have the opportunity to visit one, do not miss the chance.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Steve Ruble on July 9, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
(Full disclosure: I'm a regular attendee of the author's Pub Theology gatherings, so you may want to take this review with a grain of salt. On the other hand, I can vouch for the accuracy and honesty of his account, so there's that.)

"Pub Theology" makes me hopeful. It's about sitting down with people and talking about ideas, and that's something that few people bother to do any more. Even fewer bother to talk about ideas with people who disagree with them. In "Pub Theology" Bryan Berghoef has provided a pattern for starting (and continuing!) conversations with those who disagree with us - conversations which can move beyond argument or debate and into the realm of communication and actual understanding.

Pub Theology - the practice, and the book - is mostly about talking. Not always talking about God, but always talking within a community that respects and appreciates itself and each member. Talking in this way is a skill, and it doesn't always come naturally. Some people have a hard time expressing their thoughts in a group, and some people have a hard time listening. But as with other skills, it's something you can acquire. The ability to understand others and to make oneself understood even when you disagree about your fundamental values and presuppositions is a wonderful thing to have. Through the anecdotes and insights in this book, Berghoef explains how to create an nurture a community that fosters these skills in its members, and shares some ways that community has shaped his faith and ministry for the better.

I can imagine this book being frightening to some; Berghoef touches on ways in which religious traditions can make the possibility of communication with those outside the tradition seem dangerous.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Don Heller on September 9, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is not for someone who has all the answers about life and is unwilling to learn from others who may or may not believe in God. He helps you pull up to the table at the pub and think about how to have conversations about God with people from all viewpoints. He reminds you that everyone has something to contribute to this conversation even if they don't believe in God or they see God through the eyes of someone other than a Christian view. He does not call for you to water down your views but to be respectful of everyone else so that we can all grow. If your faith does not allow for you to have it questioned or picked apart or to be looked at through a different view then you really don't have faith. You are living with what you "know" not by faith. Faith is going where you don't have the answers but you are willing to go anyways.... Of course these kinds of questions are always better when you can share a good beer together!! :-)
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