Books of the Year on the Creed of Jesus | Jesus’ Creed
The late judge Antonin Scalia, known for his clear and inspiring prose, once said what makes good writing:
“I think there is also the genius of writing – which is mainly, I think, the ability to put yourself in the shoes of your audience; assume only what one supposes; to anticipate what they anticipate; to explain that they need to be explained; think what they should be thinking; feel what they must feel.
I hereby announce today the books of the year on the Jesus Creed, simultaneously the books of the year Tov Unleashed.
They are good books that I have read and not some kind of magical inquiry into everything that is written. Many of you are familiar with my choices in blog posts and newsletters, but a lot of thought goes into choosing which books to talk about.
Book of the Year on the Creed of Jesus
Beth Allison Barr, The Making of Biblical Femininity: How the Subjugation of Women Became Gospel Truth. A courageous book that “quenches” the Spirit and puts the so-called “biblical” American complementary movement under scrutiny for its own historical situation.
My best reads of the year
Winn Collier, A Burning in My Bones: The Authorized Biography of Eugene Peterson. A wonderful and honest journey through the life of one of our favorite writers, Eugene Peterson.
Kirsten Powers , Saving Grace: Speak your truth, stay centered and learn toCoexist with people who drive you crazy. I’ve said it before: anyone who graces political conversations has the opportunity to transform American partisanship and Christian quarrels. Powers does it on a personal journey filled with vulnerable stories.
Rebecca Eklund, The Beatitudes through the agesHow have the Beatitudes of Jesus been read in Church history? Read this wonderful book.
Jason Staples, The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism: A New Theory of the People, Exile, and Israelite History I haven’t blogged about this book yet, but maybe I’ll say something this week. This academic book explains how to explain when “Israel” and “Judean / Jew” are used in the 2nd Temple period. Best academic book I read this year.
Mike Bird, Seven things I would like Christians to know about the Bible With his characteristic wit and frolics, Bird introduces us to seven ideas that will help us put the rigidity of so many views of the Bible in our rearview mirror.
Kellye Fabien , Sacred vulnerability We hope to have Kellye on our podcast at Kingdom Roots, but so far I want to say this was the best spiritual training book I have read this year. A vulnerable exploration of her own anxieties and what she has learned.
American problems, two points of view
Raphael Warnock, The Divided Spirit of the Black Church: Theology, Piety, and Public Witness Warnock enlightened me and I thank my colleague Marshall Hatch for directing me to Warnock. Here we get a new sketch of the history of the Black Church in the United States.
George F. Will , American happiness and discontent: the unruly torrent, 2008-2020
Just in case you were wondering where I line up politically keep wondering because I want to read all sides. No one writes better political prose than George Will. Anybody. His Conservative sensitivity was amazing too, although a bit long.
John Steinbeck, Grapes of Wrath It was my favorite novel of the year, although I don’t devour novels. I read them a few pages a day. I hadn’t “read” this since high school, if you want to call what I did then read, but this time it was a wonderful story.