Book Reviews

Book Reviews are listed beginning with the most recent issue.

Click on the book review title to view the full text.

You can also browse journal issues by topic (“categories”) or author by using the top menu.

Book Review: White Too Long: The Legacy of White Supremacy in American Christianity by Robert P. Jones

[1] Several years ago, I was finishing up my STM and in the last stages of the candidacy process, looking at paperwork for congregations that were hoping to call a new pastor. As the reality of this hit me, so did the weight of my studies. Instead of feeling excited, I felt dread. There are […]

Book Review: Break Every Yoke: Religion, Justice, and the Abolition of Prisons by Joshua Dubler and Vincent W. Lloyd

[1] After years of activism and protests, the simple statement “Black Lives Matter” became more than a hashtag or a chant. It made the leap from the streets to homes, offices, and institutions. It became part of our personal conversations and our national conversation. Even those who react negatively cannot deny it or make it […]

Book Review: A Cold, Descending Fog: Letters Home and a Memoir from Wartime Berlin, 1939-1940 edited by Stewart Herman III

[1] The summer of 1939 afforded Stewart Herman Jr. his last idyll as a pastor of the American Church in the heart of Nazi Germany, little though he knew it at the time. An opportunity to travel for six weeks through Scandinavia and the Baltic states, heading northward beyond the Arctic Circle, proved an invigorating […]

April/May 2023: Book Editor’s Introduction

As we enter Holy Week, we explore a creative form of book reviewing used by ELCA Pastor Matthew Best who has transformed his book review into blog posts reflecting on each day in Holy Week. The book inspiring his reflections is Jason Porterfield’s Fight Like Jesus: How Jesus Wages Peace Throughout Holy Week.  He posted […]

Book Review: Fight Like Jesus: How Jesus Waged Peace Throughout Holy Week by Jason Porterfield

I read this book during Lent, which was the perfect time to read such a book. And let me just say – WOW! Great book. I highly recommend it. For our purposes here, I’m going to break down the review of the book in a manner similar to the structure of the book itself, which […]

Book Review: Disruption: Repurposing the Church to the Redeem the Community by Mark DeYmaz

[1] Disruption by Mark DeYmaz was a book written for me. The summary on the back of the volume says it all: “We must become disruptive.” The author is talking about how we think about church. Amen. [2] In defining a disruptor, DeYmaz turns to an opinion piece by Mel Robbins, an expert on human […]

Book Review: Chasing the Devil at Foggy Bottom: The Future of Religion in American Diplomacy by Shaun A. Casey

[1] Chasing the Devil at Foggy Bottom: The Future of Religion in American Diplomacy is an argument for the importance of religious competency in foreign policy. Author Shaun Casey, a religious scholar, was the founding director of the US State Department’s Office of Religion and Global Affairs in the Obama Administration. This book serves as […]

Book Review: Wired For Racism? How Evolution and Faith Move Us to Challenge Racial Idolatry by James Woodall and Mark Ellingsen

[1] Wired For Racism opens with a helpful introduction that sets a foundation for the chapters to come. Readers learn about the dichotomy between the authors, with Woodall being “a millennial Black Baptist preacher” and Ellingsen “a baby boomer, a White minister” (Norwegian-American Lutheran.)[1] This contrast is important because it sheds light on the minds […]

Book Review: Christianity and the Law of Migration edited by Allard, Silas W., Kristin E. Heyer, and Raj Nadella

[1] Christianity and the Law of Migration comes at an opportune time. This volume of essays brings law and legal principles into conversation with Christian Scriptural, ethical, and theological concepts on the topic of global migration. The work represents an important intervention into scholarly, humanitarian, and policy discussions at a time when millions of people […]

Book Review: The Holy Spirit and Christian Experience by Simeon Zahl

[1] Just months before his untimely death in 1963, H. Richard Niebuhr issued a rousing call for “a recovery of feeling in theology.”[1] Though he affirmed Barth’s rejection of any point of contact between revelation and human experience, he felt the pendulum had now swung too far. In securing the objectivity of the Word of […]