As you may have heard, we had the great opportunity last night to sell books for the world-famous theologian from Yale Divinity School, Dr. Miroslov Volf. We have read much of his work, and carry all his titles, so we were thrilled and honored when the Ecumenical Institute of Theology at St. Mary’s Seminary in Baltimore asked us to serve them by setting up books. We were with Volf at an important working seminar in the afternoon, exploring questions about the common good from his latest book A Public Faith and heard him do a prestigious lecture series in the evening. I must say that all that we have heard about how personable he is was true. And the bit about him being a so smart, sharp and clear, it’s true, too. What an engaging lecture he gave, and what grace he showed to hang out with us a bit. We loved his Croatian accent, the stories he told, and his generous attitude about world religions and public justice. Mostly, though, we were glad that in this very ecumenical setting–kudos to the E.I for this amazing ability to draw such a diverse crowd for such good work—he gave testimony to Jesus Christ, expressed in utterly classic, historic clarity, without equivocation. It was a good, good, day for us; hard work, but rewarding.
We now have some EXTRA BOOKS left over and, to be perfectly honest, it is better for us to sell ’em really cheaply than to pay to send back. Why not make it a win/win situation and buy some of these are great, deep discounts? The following titles are all 35% OFF discounted while supplies last, THIS WEEK ONLY. THIS OFFER EXPIRES NOVEMBER 18TH. Prices shown, as always, are the regular retail prices, and we will deduct the discount for you.
Just use the link to our webpage order form offered below. Tell us what you want and we’ll send ’em off with a smile.
A Public Faith: How Followers of Christ Should Serve the Common Good
(Brazos Press) $21.99 I have written about this elsewhere and suggest
it is one of the best and most important books of the year. (Publisher’s Weekly has agreed, by the way.) It gives excellent insights about how we can work for human flourishing, navigate pluralism, and offer uniquely Christian insights about the common good. This is the sorts of stuff that BookNotes fans love, I’m sure, and a helpful bit of bread for our journey towards this Kingdom vision. Rave
reviews from the likes of Nicholas Wolterstorff and Richard Mouw give a
hint of how insightful it is. This really is a must-read! Why not start a book group around this, or buy some to give to people who need to be reminded of the relationship between personal faith and public discourse?
Allah: A Christian Response (HarperOne) $25.99 A masterful and methodological argument on how we can know if anyone worships the same God, what various faith communities claim about right worship, and why seeing common concerns with Muslims and Christians might help us live in our globalized, shrinking world. Very, very interesting, looking at not just interfaith conversations, but fascinating concerns of Muslims about (what end up being wrongheaded) views of the Trinity. Agree or not with all of his conclusions (and I am not sure I do) this is very important and a good example of rigorous theological thinking. Fascinating.
Free of Charge: Giving and Forgiving in a Culture Stripped of Grace (Zondervan) $12.99 If you haven’t read Volf, you could easily start here: a personal favorite, readable, clear, inspiring and very helpful. How can we be gracious in a world were people are “voted off the island” and we all talk about “rights” and we are told we must all “pay our own way.” This truly is gospel stuff, liberating and radical, written in a reflective, quiet tone. Very highly recommended—one of his best. Forward by Rowan Williams, and an endorsing blurb on the cover by the popular John Ortberg.
Exclusion & Embrace: A Theological Exploration of Identity, Otherness and Reconciliation (Abingdon Press) $28.00 This is the one that catapulted Dr. Volf to fame, a book that is a serious, heavy study of “otherness” and pushes us towards God’s vision of ethnic reconciliation. That it has in its shadow the background of genocide in his former homeland of Yugoslavia gives it credibility and considerable anguish. For anyone concerned about justice, global witness, and the hard work of peace-building, this is a seminal book, one-of-a-kind, and very, very significant, which many of taken as a great sign of faithfulness and hope. Award-winning and still his most well known.
Captive to the Word of God: Engaging the Scriptures for Contemporary Theological Reflection (Eerdmans) $18.00 The subtitle says it all. This includes incisive Biblical study, but is mostly about how we approach the Bible, how to use it, how to apply it for our contemporary formation. Many folks wonder how theologians use the Bible, and many wonder if there are reasonable insights about how to wisely plumb the Biblical narrative for our daily living in ways that aren’t simplistic or cheesy or forced. This is a noteworthy model of how a working thinker engages the Scriptures and a helpful pointer to us on our submission to the Biblical text. Nice to know this high regard for Scripture is known at places like Yale!
After Our Likeness: The Church as the Image of the Trinity (Eerdmans) $27.00 One might think this hefty doctrinal study in a big paperback volume is his hardest — and you would be wrong, I think. This is meaty, thorough, serious, but quite accessible, on a topic which every Christian should read about from time to time. The doctrine of the trinity is itself a mind-blowing subject, and this not only explores it well, but shows its relevance for our life together. This is a very good example of how theology can serve the church, serious thinking for the people of God. Kudos!
The End of Memory: Remembering Rightly in a Violent World (Eerdmans) $22.00 Beth and I found the first part of this great fodder for good conversation, and it stands at once as both a book about forgiveness, and also a profound meditation on memory, naming, justice, and so much more. As many truly great books are, it is a bit difficult to describe simply but it is rich, multi-faceted and generously reflective about faith and reconciliation and God’s call for us to be realistic, honest, real, and taken by the forgiveness of God in Christ Jesus. A very handsome hardback, highly recommended.
Against the Tide: Love in a Time of Petty Dreams and Persisting Enmities (Eerdmans) $18.00 Besides the splendid title, I told a few people last night that they should get this if they were unfamiliar with him. These are all very short pieces—most just two or three pages–and allows him to colorfully ruminate on all manner of topics. Sort of a “greatest hits” it is almost like a Volf devotional. Lovely, inspiring, useful, wide-ranging on a vast array of topics and areas of life, from work to church, exploring how love makes a difference. This would make a lovely bedside book, a fine one to discuss together, section by section, or a nice gift that isn’t too demanding of time. Is there a name for this kind of book that you can dip in to so easily? Nice.
Work in the Spirit: Toward a Theology of Work (Wipf & Stock) $27.00 This is a major, scholarly contribution to the conversations about a Christian view of work, one in which he takes exception to more typically Reformed views of our human callings to particular vocations, based on our mandate to be “culture makers” in various spheres of creation. Rather, Volf here brings to the conversation a serious, sustained study of the role of the Holy Spirit in gifting us to serve the common good. That his father was a Pentecostal pastor maybe influenced him a bit, and this “pneumonology” of work is years later still a book that serious thinkers often cite on this topic.
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