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The Kingdom is Always But Coming: A Life of Walter Rauschenbusch Paperback – February 1, 2010

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Baylor University Press (February 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1602582092
  • ISBN-13: 978-1602582095
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,584,878 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Timely and absorbing. Like the best in this genre, this biography brilliantly positions Rauschenbusch in his own era."

--Harvey Cox, Hollis Professor of Divinity, Harvard Divinity School

"Splendid. A model of historical scholarship and theological analysis; it significantly strengthens our understanding of Rauschenbusch and his era."

--Gary Dorrien, Reinhold Niebuhr Professor of Social Ethics, Union Theological Seminary

"Definitive. Evans presents the paradoxes and complexities of Rauschenbusch's life, thought, and action in ways that past biographers have not."

--Rosemary Skinner Keller, Professor Emerita of Church History, Union Theological Seminary

About the Author

Christopher H. Evans is Sallie Knowles Crozer Professor of Church History, Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, Rochester, New York. He is the author and editor of several books, including, The Faith of Fifty Million: Baseball, Religion, and American Culture, and The Social Gospel Today. He lives in Penfield, New York.

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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Fred W Hood on October 21, 2004
Format: Paperback
From the strong influence of his Father, Augustus to his first Seminary Prof, Augustus Strong and German Theologians, Albrecht Ritschl, Friedrich Schleiermacher, Adolph von Harnack, then to American influence of Charles Sheldon and Washington Gladden. It was his star-studded pathway into the forefront of the liberal, social gospel movement that led to Liberation Theology of the 20th Century! W R began his 4 yr sojourn as student in a German Gymnasium located in the small Westphalia city of Gutersloh. His father Augustus wished to expose him to German higher education. Then to mature him in the religious & cultural environment of his own theological orthydoxy of Lutheran Pietism. Years later W R commented on his education in Germany as bringing him to no outlook except soul-saving: "I had no outlook except a common evangelicalism!" He entered those years of 1876 to 1886 when Liberal Theology was influenced by Phillips Brooks, Henry Ward Beecher and Washington Gladden. They were strong influences upon the preaching, writings and teaching of Walter R.

Curiously his student writings lack references to the doctrine that became the cornerstone of later liberalism: The Kingdom of God. Many members of the Rochester Seminary were hostile to the theologian, Ritschl. W R would later embrace the persective of Ritschl and disciple, Adolph von Harnack, around the theme, The Kingdom of God. Even more revealing was the gradual maturity of his ambivalence toward the "institutional church." The model he and others sought to implement: "The institutional church is a necessary evil. Make social life healthy and you can simplify the work of the church. Let poverty and helplessness increase and you increase work of the church too."

In 1918 the faith of Walter was focused upon death.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By J. Brennan on March 9, 2006
Format: Paperback
For anyone interested in the history of US Christianity in the 20th century this book offers valuable insights. Evans nicely balances the moving story of Rauschenbush's personal life with a careful analysis of his intellectual and spiritual development. After reading Rauschenbusch's life-story, the reader only wishes that the 21st century had someone of his stature to help us interpret the signs of these troubled and confusing times.
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