Essential Books on Evangelism

Article excerpt

The Logic of Evangelism, by William J. Abraham (Eerdmans). Abraham sees evangelism in a series of movements that concern initiation into the kingdom of God. He brings the incisive analytic skills of a philosopher and practicing Christian to this book, as he does to all of his writings on renewal and theology. This volume is unique in its clarity and power on the much neglected topic of the logic of evangelism.

Biblical Perspectives on Evangelism: Living in a Three-Storied Universe, by Walter Brueggemann (Abingdon). Brueggemann views evangelism as "doing the text again, as news"--news that is received, appropriated and enacted in contemporary ways. He follows Paul Ricoeur's insight regarding reading the world in front of the text. This approach opens the Bible in ways seldom explored in circles concerned with evangelism.

GodSpeech: Putting Divine Disclosures into Human Words, by Ben Campbell Johnson (Eerdmans). Johnson distinguishes between primary and secondary Godspeech and focuses here on the secondary: what we say about God--that is, how we notice and translate into discourse the presence of God in ordinary activities. This opens the door to many indirect approaches to evangelism.

Being Promised: Theology, Gift, and Practice, by Gregory Walter (Eerdmans). Walter takes up an essential characteristic of the word spoken as the good news in evangelism: it is an unconditional promise. As a philosophical theologian he places his conversation within three areas of contemporary research on gift exchange: cultural anthropology, continental philosophy, and the interpretation of key texts from the Bible regarding gift exchange and promise. …

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