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Unfettered Hope: A Call to Faithful Living in an Affluent Society Paperback – March 31, 2003

4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Marva J. Dawn is Teaching Fellow in Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. An internationally renowned theologian, author, and educator with Christians Equipped for Ministry, she has preached and taught at seminaries, clergy conferences, churches, assemblies, and universities all over the world.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press; 1 edition (March 31, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0664225950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0664225957
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #489,761 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Marva J. Dawn serves the global Church as a theologian, author, musician, and educator under Christians Equipped for Ministry and as Teaching Fellow in Spiritual Theology at Regent College in Vancouver, British Columbia. A scholar with four master's degrees and a Ph.D. in Christian Ethics and the Scriptures from the University of Notre Dame, Dr. Dawn has taught for clergy and worship conferences and at seminaries throughout the world. She is also well-known and highly appreciated as a preacher and speaker for all ages and sometimes contributes to worship by means of her musical gifts. She is the author of more than fifteen books and is happy married to Myron Sandberg; they reside in Washington State.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is a book which excites and stirs. It animates and illuminates my hearts desire to become both authentically human and faithfully Christian, my yearning to have a faith which truly transforms my life and the community I'm part of, my craving for a faith which integrates a world fragmented by injustice and division.
Eugene Peterson writes that Marva Dawn's new book contains, " clarifying, energizing, necessary words for Christian understanding and obedience." Walter Brueggemann describes Dawn as, "one of our most acute social critics and articulate theologians, who moves quickly past the puzzling issues of method to the real stuff of faith." The real stuff of faith and life is what I deal with everyday. So does this book in any way help me as a priest and pastor to make sense of the world around me? Does it equip and encourage the church in being better at being Jesus in the world today? I believe it does!
This book is not just another post 9/11 commentary on modern life. It certainly does contain a reflective and accessible synthesis of social commentary, philosophy and theology which itself affords a piercing critique of the world as it is. But it's much much more. "Unfettered hope" is both prophetic statement and Christian apologetic, manifesto for practical engagement and pastoral handbook for faithful living. Dawn seeks to understand more cogently the forces which bind (fetter) people's lives thus preventing them from becoming truly human and truly Christian. These "fetterings" bind us and blind us by obscuring true priorities and values. In exchange people are given false hopes which result in them being distracted from what should be core values, priorities and practices, what are called our "focal concerns".
The book begins by looking at how life is fettered.
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I am almost finished reading this book; I have to admit, I'll miss the insight and prayer and repentance that seemed to go along with every new chapter (and sometimes each turn of the page). This is the first book I have read from Marva and really learned so much. I have to admit that much of what she says is already along the lines of things I believe anyway, but she does a great job of communicating what living like a child of the Most Holy God may really look like. We are so blessed...there are so many hurting, desperate people in the world today. Do we dare to change our consumer habits to better love our neighbor? I hope I will.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While I the author's heart is definitely in the right place, I think this book has an extremely limited audience. It's written like a series of academic papers/journal articles, and tries to apply that way of writing and thinking to topics of contemporary Christian living. This may work for other P.H.D. types, but for the rest of us it may come off too dry to really get anything meaningful out of.

My advice would be to skip this, unless you're :extremely: comfortable with reading and digesting academic/journal-style writing as part of your devotion/study time.
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Format: Paperback
I really wanted to get a lot out of this book. The subtitle "A Call to Faithful Living in an Affluent Society" really excited me with the promise of guidelines on how to live, practically, in line with my faith — instead of getting caught up living self-centered like it is so easy to do. I hoped for practical tips and examples of real-world, real-life, first-world Christ-followers that manage to avoid being distracted by things, by busyness, and by spending too much time on eternally insignificant pursuits. Ms. Dawn is obviously learned and has thought a lot about the subject. Unfortunately, her ideas are delivered almost entirely in theological-doctorate lingo. I am not uneducated. On the contrary. And I earn my living as an editor. This is likely an excellent book for academics, and has probably made its way around many universities' theology departments. For the average first-world Christ-follower, I am afraid it is not terribly accessible. Words like "commodifications," "meta-narrative," and "eschatological" scatter across page after page. Here is one example, chosen randomly from the book: "Many other dimensions of church life, such as congregational decisions, become fettered by the device paradigm." I hope someone will take Ms. Dawn's work and boil it down to "average-person speak" so we can all benefit from her wisdom.
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