Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion

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InterVarsity Press, Feb 26, 2018 - Religion - 192 pages
  • 2018 Foreword INDIES Book of the Year Award Finalists - Multicultural
"I am a man torn in two. And the gospel I inherited is divided." Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove grew up in the Bible Belt in the American South as a faithful church-going Christian. But he gradually came to realize that the gospel his Christianity proclaimed was not good news for everybody. The same Christianity that sang, "Amazing grace, how sweet the sound" also perpetuated racial injustice and white supremacy in the name of Jesus. His Christianity, he discovered, was the religion of the slaveholder. Just as Reconstruction after the Civil War worked to repair a desperately broken society, our compromised Christianity requires a spiritual reconstruction that undoes the injustices of the past. Wilson-Hartgrove traces his journey from the religion of the slaveholder to the Christianity of Christ. Reconstructing the gospel requires facing the pain of the past and present, from racial blindness to systemic abuses of power. Grappling seriously with troubling history and theology, Wilson-Hartgrove recovers the subversiveness of the gospel that sustained the church through centuries of slavery and oppression, from the civil rights era to the Black Lives Matter movement and beyond. When the gospel is reconstructed, freedom rings both for individuals and for society as a whole. Discover how Jesus continues to save us from ourselves and each other, to repair the breach and heal our land.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - deusvitae - LibraryThing

A personal story of reflection regarding the Christianity in which the author was raised and his reckoning and grappling with its roots in and complicity with slavery, white supremacy, and oppression ... Read full review

Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion

User Review  - The Reverend Dr William J Barber III - Publishers Weekly

Wilson-Hartgrove (Strangers at My Door), a white minister serving at a historic African-American Baptist church near Durham, N.C., extends the arc of his previous reflections on New South faith, race ... Read full review

Contents

Foreword by the Reverend Dr William J Barber II
1
Slaveholder Religion
5
The Christianity of Christ
105
A Letter to My Grandfather and My Son
171
Acknowledgments
175
Notes
179
About the Author
199
Also by Jonathan WilsonHartgrove
201
Praise for Reconstructing the Gospel
202
More Titles from InterVarsity Press
206
Copyright

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About the author (2018)

Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove (MDiv, Duke Divinity School) is a writer, speaker, and activist. He and his wife, Leah, founded the Rutba House, a house of hospitality where the formerly homeless are welcomed into a community that eats, prays, and shares life together. Jonathan directs the School for Conversion, a nonprofit that pursues beloved community with kids in the neighborhood, through classes in North Carolina prisons, and in community-based education around the country. Jonathan is also an associate minister at the historically black St. John's Missionary Baptist Church. Jonathan is the coauthor of Becoming the Answer to Our Prayers, a coeditor of Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals, and the author of Strangers at My Door, The Awakening of Hope, The Wisdom of Stability, and The New Monasticism. He is also the coauthor, with Rev. Dr. William Barber II, of The Third Reconstruction: Moral Mondays, Fusion Politics, and the Rise of a New Justice Movement.

The Reverend Dr. William J. Barber II is a Protestant minister and political leader in North Carolina. He is a member of the national board of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the chair of their Legislative Political Action Committee. Barber has served as pastor of Greenleaf Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), in Goldsboro, North Carolina since 1993.

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