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How the Church Fails Businesspeople (And What Can Be Done About It) Paperback – December 20, 2011
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-- author of From the Shop Floor to the Top Floor: Releasing the CEO Within
There are over 2,000 Bible verses that address business, yet how often do we hear a message in church that relates to business in any practical way? John Knapp's excellent book presents a much-needed wake-up call for pastors, churches, and Christian businesspeople alike.
Stephen B. Young
-- Global Executive Director, Caux Round Table
"Knapp shows how Christian faith is not an obstacle to worldly vocations but, rather, permits the engagement of our spirits with our roles in business, finance, and commerce."
The Christian Century
“Challenges both businesspeople and pastors to redefine what it means to be relevant to a new generation of church members longing for deeper integration between their professional and spiritual realms.”
Sharing the Practice
“Both challenging and encouraging. . . . It’s an excellent book that needs wide circulation.”
Mennonite Brethren Herald
“This accessible book will benefit both pastors and laypeople alike. Church leaders can find new possibilities to expand and animate ministry to include that portion of life where many members spend the bulk of their time. Laypeople will discover anew that their daily work is vital to God’s economy.”
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Top Customer Reviews
For many Christians who work in a business environment there is a great divide between work and faith. Bringing your faith into the workplace is often discouraged by the business world. At the same time, as Knapp's research reveals, the world of the church is oblivious to the business world and to the challenges businesspeople face. Why is this so and what can we do about it? The book's agenda is to get us started thinking about these questions.
The book works well for a Christian Education or small group study. The book consists of eight chapters divided into two parts consisting of four chapters each. There are excellent discussion questions at the end of each chapter. But the book also is well footnoted with a bibliography for further reading for those who may want to go deeper. The book is well written and accessible.
The first section of the book is titled "Worlds Apart." Knapp lays out the contribution that both the business world and the church world makes to the faith and work divide. There is a chapter about the church's historical ambivalence toward money and another about who Christians try to cope with divided lives.
The second section of the book is titled "Toward Coherence." Knapp discusses the need to rethink our understanding of vocation and to develop a moral theology of work.Read more ›
For these reasons, I realise that I have often subconsciously, if not intentionally, tried to keep business and money talks out of spiritual conversations. But this book is a wake up call - an ice axe that shears through the dividing wall between the world of business and the world of spirituality.
John Knapp carefully carves out a biblical approach to the world of business, work and money without capitulating to the consumerism of the modern age nor to the prosperity gospel, that simply equates wealth with divine favor.
Does the bible have anything to say to the businessmen who spend the most part of the week in the marketplace ? Should the pastor(s) of the church offer spiritual guidance to issues arising out of the business enterprise? John Knapp gives a resounding 'yes' and laments that the typical seminary training has done little to equip the pastors and church leaders in addressing work issues.
The author goes further than surfacing the endemic problem. He fleshes out some creative solutions to overturn the tide. Drawing from church history critically and modern biblical studies, he proposes a way forward.
The interaction between business and spirituality will remain a sticky one but keeping them clinically apart has been tried and found wanting. John Knapp here kickstarts a needed conversation on how to bring them together in a biblical and holistic way.Read more ›
Dr. Knapp does not offer any quick or easy fix solutions, in my opinion (not speaking for him) because there aren't any. The issue of how the church can lead in the area of business is a complex and difficult subject, but Dr. Knapp points out clear and present opportunities for the church to become relevant in the world of business.
Given the number of hours most of us spend every day, week, month and year working compared to other aspects of our life, you would think that the church would be all over the topic and wanting to lead and equip their members for biblical insights as to live out their faith in those hours. The idea that Dr. Knapp raised about living out your faith and fulfilling our mission to Love God first and in all areas of our life, cause an intense personal evaluation to those who read to see how we really are doing. Are we BEING Christ followers in our lives...or are we DOING christian looking things (if that) in our lives...specifically our business lives.
I strongly encourage anyone, everyone be it Pastors (especially pastors and staff), lay leaders, business people and all who desire to see the church take a more relevant role in the lives of it's people to get and read the book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The title is a bit snarky, but the content is great. Challenging in a productive way.Published 3 months ago by jenibeecita
Makes you think and reevaluate the church's priority. Do clergy really care about what people spend 50% of their waking hours doing in work?Published on October 3, 2013 by Victoria S