Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation by James K.A. Smith (Eerdmans, 2009).

Book Response: Desiring the Kingdom, by James K. A. Smith

Smith’s “core claim . . . is that liturgies—whether ‘sacred’ or ‘secular’—shape and constitute our identities by forming our most fundamental desires and our most basic attunement to the world. . . . [i.e.,] liturgies make us certain kinds of people, and what defines us is what we love” (25)Read more…

Cover of To Change the World

Book Response: To Change the World, by James Davison Hunter

To Change the World has been hailed as “a seminal book on cultural formation and change, particularly insightful on how Christians (primarily evangelical) have understood and misunderstood culture change over the past 40 years or so” (Micheal Hickerson. Changing the World with James Davison Hunter. Emerging Scholars Network Blog, 8/2/2010). Read more…

Who's Afraid of Postmodernism?
Taking Derrida, Lyotard, and Foucault to Church. James K. A. Smith (Baker Publishing Group, 2009).

Book Response: Who’s Afraid of Postmodernism?, by James K. A. Smith

Truly the church is an apologetic in which one is renewed and transformed by God as part of a people living in a disciplined, liturgical community (28-30, 25, 99) across particular times and places to interact with “the lens of an interpretive framework governed by ultimate beliefs” through the Scriptures by the sanctification of the Spirit (54-56).Read more…

Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers by Christian Smith with Melinda Lundquist Denton. Oxford U. Press, 2005.

Book Response: Soul Searching

Since Soul Searching’s publication, I have recommended that parents, church leadership teams and youth/campus ministers prayerfully read, consider, and develop structural adjustments taking into consideration “Summary Interpretation: Moralistic Therapeutic Deism” (161-71) and the “Concluding Unscientific Postscript: Observations and Implications of NSYR (National Study of Youth and Religion) Findings for Religious Communities and Youth Workers” (259-271).Read more…

Renaissance: The Power of the Gospel However Dark the Times. Os Guinness (InterVarsity Press, 2014).

Book Response: Renaissance, by Os Guinness

There is no shortage of analyses of the twin crises of the church and the West, but by themselves such analyses have too often led to despondency, fear and paralysis, just as medical diagnosis without remedies can be heartless and debilitating. What we also need is a constructive overarching vision of Christian engagement in today’s advanced modern world, one that is shaped by faith in God and a Christian perspective rather than by current wisdom, and one that can inspire Christians to move out with courage to confront the best and worst that we may encounter (27).Read more…