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The biography of Sheena Duncan is an account of the life of a notable woman, one which reveals the extent of her influence in the quest for justice and peace in South Africa. Its range and depth depict Sheena Duncan's work over four decades in the church, including the South African council of churches, and in civil society organisations such as the Black Sash. Her public life is balanced by her personal story as daughter, wife, mother and friend. Her respect and compassion for others, her faith, her intelligence and her honesty and integrity underpin her opposition to the cruelty of the pass laws and other unjust measures. The book explores her insights into complex issues of rights to land, of militarisation and pacifism, and of devising ways to end violent conflicts - all still of relevance to our society today. Through her own words and the words of others, through vivid memories and stark facts, Sheena emerges as a complex, multidimensional woman - loving, gentle, down-to-earth, flawed, talented, intelligent, strategic, angry, forceful, articulate, hard-working - a product of her ancestry, yet visionary and capable of personal transformation.
According to recent surveys and studies, race relations in the United States are the worst they've been since the 1990s, and many would argue that life for most minorities has not significantly improved since the civil rights era of the 1960s. For so many, the dream of true equality has dissolved into a reality of prejudice, fear, and violence as a way of life. John M. Perkins has been there from the beginning. Raised by his sharecropping grandparents, Perkins fled Mississippi in 1947 after his brother was fatally shot by a police officer. He led voter registration efforts in 1964, worked for school desegregation in 1967, and was imprisoned and tortured in 1970. Through it all, he has remained determined to seek justice and reconciliation based in Christ's redemptive work. "Justice is something that every generation has to strive for," he says. And despite the setbacks of recent years, Perkins finds hope in the young people he has met all across the nation who are hard at work, bringing about reconciliation in God's name and offering acceptance to all. Dream with Me is his look back at a life devoted to seeking justice for all God's people, as well as a look forward to what he sees as a potentially historic breakthrough for people of every race.
Love and Liberation reads the autobiographical and biographical writings of one of the few Tibetan Buddhist women to record the story of her life. Sera Khandro Kunzang Dekyong Chonyi Wangmo (also called Dewe Dorje, 1892-1940) was extraordinary not only for achieving religious mastery as a Tibetan Buddhist visionary and guru to many lamas, monastics, and laity in the Golok region of eastern Tibet, but also for her candor. This book listens to Sera Khandro's conversations with land deities, dakinis, bodhisattvas, lamas, and fellow religious community members whose voices interweave with her own to narrate what is a story of both love between Sera Khandro and her guru, Drime Ozer, and spiritual liberation. Sarah H. Jacoby's analysis focuses on the status of the female body in Sera Khandro's texts, the virtue of celibacy versus the expediency of sexuality for religious purposes, and the difference between profane lust and sacred love between male and female tantric partners. Her findings add new dimensions to our understanding of Tibetan Buddhist consort practices, complicating standard scriptural presentations of male subject and female aide. Sera Khandro depicts herself and Drime Ozer as inseparable embodiments of insight and method that together form the Vajrayana Buddhist vision of complete buddhahood. By advancing this complementary sacred partnership, Sera Khandro carved a place for herself as a female virtuoso in the male-dominated sphere of early twentieth-century Tibetan religion.
Keshab Chandra Sen (1838-84) was one of the most powerful and controversial figures in nineteenth-century Bengal. A religious leader and social reformer, his universalist interpretation of Hinduism found mass appeal in India, and generated considerable interest in Britain. His ideas on British imperial rule, religion and spirituality, global history, universalism and modernity were all influential, and his visit to England made him a celebrity. Many Britons regarded him as a prophet of world-historical significance. Keshab was the subject of extreme adulation and vehement criticism. Accounts tell of large crowds prostrating themselves before him, believing him to be an avatar. Yet he died with relatively few followers, his reputation in both India and Britain largely ruined. As a representative of India, Keshab became emblematic of broad concerns regarding Hinduism and Christianity, science and faith, India and the British Empire. This innovative study explores the transnational historical forces that shaped Keshab's life and work. It offers an alternative religious history of empire, characterised by intercultural dialogue and religious syncretism. A fascinating and often tragic portrait of Keshab's experience of the imperial world, and the ways in which he carried meaning for his contemporaries.
From the prizewinning Jewish Lives series, a new exploration of Karl Marx's life through his intellectual contributions to modern thought Karl Marx (1818-1883)-philosopher, historian, sociologist, economist, current affairs journalist, and editor-was one of the most influential and revolutionary thinkers of modern history, but he is rarely thought of as a Jewish thinker, and his Jewish background is either overlooked or misrepresented. Here, distinguished scholar Shlomo Avineri argues that Marx's Jewish origins did leave a significant impression on his work. Marx was born in Trier, then part of Prussia, and his family had enjoyed equal rights and emancipation under earlier French control of the area. But then its annexation to Prussia deprived the Jewish population of its equal rights. These developments led to the reluctant conversion of Marx's father, and similar tribulations radicalized many young intellectuals of that time who came from a Jewish background. Avineri puts Marx's Jewish background in its proper and balanced perspective, and traces Marx's intellectual development in light of the historical, intellectual, and political contexts in which he lived. About Jewish Lives: Jewish Lives is a prizewinning series of interpretative biography designed to explore the many facets of Jewish identity. Individual volumes illuminate the imprint of Jewish figures upon literature, religion, philosophy, politics, cultural and economic life, and the arts and sciences. Subjects are paired with authors to elicit lively, deeply informed books that explore the range and depth of the Jewish experience from antiquity to the present. In 2014, the Jewish Book Council named Jewish Lives the winner of its Jewish Book of the Year Award, the first series ever to receive this award. More praise for Jewish Lives: "Excellent." - New York times "Exemplary." - Wall St. Journal "Distinguished." - New Yorker "Superb." - The Guardian
The inspiring life of the missionary Jim Elliot, who was murdered in Ecuador. This is the story of an earthly man with a heavenly mind. Jim Elliot was a man of passion and a man of prayer. This book chronicles his journey from childhood in Oregon and his college days at Wheaton to the mission field of Ecuador where he eventually gave his life at age 28. Full of journal excerpts and personal letters, we are introduced to this great man, his struggles, his ambitions, his loves, his dreams and his all-consuming passion for Christ and His kingdom.
This compelling reconstruction of the life and thought of St Paul paints a vivid picture of the Roman world in which he preached his revolutionary message and explains the significance of his lasting impact on both the Church and the world. Regarded by many as the founder of Christianity, Paul of Tarsus is one of the most controversial and powerful figures in history. His writings have had an incalculable influence on Western culture and beyond, and his words continue to guide the lives of over two billion Christians across the world today. In this superbly detailed biography Tom Wright traces Paul's career from zealous persecutor of the fledgling Church, through his journeys as the world's greatest missionary theologian, to his likely death as a Christian martyr at the hands of Nero in the mid 60s CE. Drawing judiciously on the latest research into the Jewish, Greek and Roman worlds, and enriched by a wealth of critical insight into Paul's own writings, this is the most rounded portrait of the apostle ever painted - his development, motivations, spiritual struggles and intellectual achievements, and his lasting impact over two millennia.
Piper, who suffered a horrific accident and was clinically dead for 90 minutes, returned to life only to go through a painful recovery, tells of his "welcoming committee" in heaven and the significant role each of them had on his earthly life. Their words and actions impacted him for eternity. People I Met at the Gates of Heaven continues the heaven conversation that is of such interest to people and shows how we can and should influence others on earth for heaven's purposes, just as those who preceded Don to heaven influenced him. At the end of each chapter there will be questions for further reflection or group discussion. As well, Piper and his writing partner Cecil Murphey have included a Q&A section at the back of the book-questions people have most often asked Piper about what heaven is like, who is there, and what they can expect when they die. This all-new, delightful, revealing book will not only answer your questions about heaven but it will also challenge you to answer Jesus' call to "draw all people unto Me."
Gershom Scholem (1897-1982) was ostensibly a scholar of Jewish mysticism, yet he occupies a powerful role in today's intellectual imagination, having an influential contact with an extraordinary cast of thinkers, including Hans Jonas, Martin Buber, Walter Benjamin, Hannah Arendt, and Theodor Adorno. In this first biography of Scholem, Amir Engel shows how Scholem grew from a scholar of an esoteric discipline to a thinker wrestling with problems that reach to the very foundations of the modern human experience. As Engel shows, in his search for the truth of Jewish mysticism Scholem molded the vast literature of Jewish mystical lore into a rich assortment of stories that unveiled new truths about the modern condition. Positioning Scholem's work and life within early twentieth-century Germany, Palestine, and later the state of Israel, Engel intertwines Scholem's biography with his historiographical work, which stretches back to the Spanish expulsion of Jews in 1492, through the lives of Rabbi Isaac Luria and Sabbatai Zevi, and up to Hasidism and the dawn of the Zionist movement. Through parallel narratives, Engel touches on a wide array of important topics including immigration, exile, Zionism, World War One, and the creation of the state of Israel, ultimately telling the story of the realizations--and failures--of a dream for a modern Jewish existence.
Julian Wilson provides one of the most comprehensive accounts of the life of Smith Wigglesworth to date. Few individuals have made such an impact on the world for the gospel as the Yorkshire-born plumber turned evangelist Smith Wigglesworth. Although he died in 1947, he is, arguably, more well-known now than when he was alive. He founded no movement, authored no books, had no official disciples, and no doctrine or theological college bears his name, but through his audacious faith and spectacular healing ministry, Wigglesworth fanned the flames of revival in many countries throughout the world. Thousands came to know Jesus Christ as their Saviour, received divine healing and were delivered from demonic oppression and possession as a result of his ministry.
Suicide claims a million lives a year. Each one leaves behind survivors - shattered, grieving, angry, guilty and often despairing. Al Hsu is one such survivor. On an ordinary Thursday morning, he answered the phone and discovered that his father had taken his own life. For months and even years afterwards, he wrestled with intense emotional and spiritual questions. There were no easy answers. But he drew deeply from the resources of his Christian faith and the God who offers comfort and hope. Whether you have lost a loved one to suicide or provide pastoral care to survivors, this book will be an essential companion on your journey. This revised and expanded edition includes helpful information for churches and a useful study guide.
In April 2006, Canadian-Iranian philosopher Ramin Jahanbegloo was
waiting at the airport in Tehran for a flight to Brussels. He had
arrived early, knowing he would be double-checked by security,
something that had become almost routine for him. But on this day
the routine was broken and missing his flight became the least of
On July 19, 1924, Eric Liddell was on top of the world. He was the most famous Briton at the time, having just won the gold in the Olympic 400-meter race. The story of that raceóand the one he didnít runówas told in the popular movie classic Chariots of Fire. But what most of us donít know is what became of Eric Liddell in the years after the credits rolled. As the storm clouds of World War II rolled in, Eric had already made decisions in his life that gave him the resilience to stand tall while others fell into despair. His strength of character led him to choose an uncertain future in China during World War II in order to continue helping the Chinese. He lived purposefully even as his world crumbled and he experienced the horror and deprivations of a Japanese internment camp. Ericís story is a story of hope in the face of uncertainty, resilience in the face of unspeakable odds, and inspiring vision of what life means, even when the final hour comes. The first race you run isnít your most important one. Itís the final race that matters most. You wonít want to miss this story of an Olympian who chose the better way.Eric Eichinger is an ordained minister in the Lutheran ChurchóMissouri Synod. He holds degrees from Michigan State University (BA), where he ran varsity track & field, and Concordia Seminary (MDiv). Prior to his pastoral call, he lived in New York for two years as a youth director for his church, and served with LCMS World Mission for two years in mainland China. Some of his additional writing can be found in the GodConnects series, where he wrote with a team of writers for The Lutheran Hour. He has also written a screenplay about the life of Eric Liddell, with co-writer, Howard Klausner, which is currently in development. Eric serves as senior pastor of Bethel Lutheran Church in Clearwater, Florida, and resides in the Tampa Bay area. He and his wife, Kara, have three children, and a tenacious pup dachshund, Doppelbock, who chews everything he can find with the work ethic of a velociraptor.
In this riveting novel, beloved international bestselling author Deepak Chopra captures the spellbinding life story of the great and often misunderstood Prophet.
Islam was born in a cradle of tribal turmoil, and the arrival of one God who vanquished hundreds of ancient Arabian gods changed the world forever. God reached down into the life of Muhammad, a settled husband and father, and spoke through him. Muhammad's divine and dangerous task was to convince his people to renounce their ancestral idols and superstitious veneration of multiple gods. From the first encounter, God did not leave Muhammad alone, his life was no longer his own, and with each revelation the creation of a new way of life formed and a religion was born.
Muhammad didn't see himself as the son of God or as one who achieved cosmic enlightenment. His relatives and neighbors didn't part the way when he walked down the parched dirt streets of Mecca. There was no mark of divinity. Orphaned by age six, Muhammad grew up surrounded by dozens of cousins and extended family to become a trusted merchant. Muhammad saw himself as an ordinary man and that is why what happened to him is so extraordinary.
Rooted in historical detail, Muhammad brings the Prophet to life through the eyes of those around him. A Christian hermit mystic foretells a special destiny, a pugnacious Bedouin wet nurse raises him in the desert, and a religious rebel in Mecca secretly takes the young orphan under his spiritual wing. Each voice, each chapter brings Muhammad and the creation of Islam into a new light. The angel Gabriel demands Muhammad to recite, the first convert risks his life to protect his newfound faith, and Muhammad's life is not a myth but an incredible true and surprisingly unknown story of a man and a moment that sparked a worldwide transformation.
No other German has shaped the history of early-modern Europe more than Martin Luther. In this comprehensive and balanced biography we see Luther as a rebel, but not as a lone hero; as a soldier in a mighty struggle for the universal reform of Christianity and its role in the world. The foundation of Protestantism changed the religious landscape of Europe, and subsequently the world, but the author chooses to show not simply as a reformer, but as an individual. In his study of the Wittenberg monk, Heinz Schilling - one of Germany's leading social and political historians - gives the reader a rounded view of a difficult, contradictory character, who changed the world by virtue of his immense will.
This is the story of Mary Dyer whose indomitable efforts to seek and find freedom to worship lead eventually to her death. Her quest began when she and her husband sailed from old to new England in 1635. Landing in Boston, they were soon disillusioned by the intolerant practices and beliefs of the Puritans, who considered that all truth could be found in the Old Testament and only there. Variations, from Puritan interpretations of the Ten Commandments, were punished by cruel torture and/or death. Banished from Boston for protesting such rigidity in belief and in practice, Mary was among the group who founded Rhode Island, where freedom in belief and in practice of worship was established. Mary Dyer did not cease from exploring every available form of worship until she discovered the one which spoke the truth to her. On a trip back to England, Mary met George Fox, who gave her the confidence that women had special intellectual and spiritual gifts. Fox encouraged her to become a Quaker and a missionary. She was alarmed by Boston Puritan laws designed to repress and eliminate Quakers. Undaunted, Mary challenged the Puritan intolerance. "My life not availaeth me in comparison with the liberty of the truth."
Growing up in the Tennessee hills, Alvin York was equally renowned as a marksman and as a hard-drinking brawler. A dramatic New Year's conversion convinced him that killing was against God's will, and yet this shy, big-boned mountaineer singlehandedly dispatched two dozen Germans and captured 132 in the closing days of World War I. He earned the Medal of Honor and a ticker tape parade but refused to cash in on his fame, insisting "Uncle Sam's uniform ain't for sale."
This succinct and gripping new account of Sgt. York's remarkable life includes details from exclusive interviews with the sergeant's three surviving children and information drawn from battlefield eyewitness reports and original film studio archives: fresh reminders of the legacy of one of America's great Christian patriots.
We learn about life through the lives of others. Their experiences, their trials, their adventures become our schools, our chapels, our playgrounds. Christian Encounters, a series of biographies from Thomas Nelson Publishers, highlights important lives from all ages and areas of the Church through prose as accessible and concise as it is personal and engaging. Some are familiar faces. Others are unexpected guests. Whether the person is D.L. Moody, Sergeant York, Saint Nicholas, John Bunyan, or William F. Buckley, we are now living in the world that they created and understand both it and ourselves better in the light of their lives. Their relationships, struggles, prayers, and desires uniquely illuminate our shared experience.
Christian Encounters, a series of biographies from Thomas Nelson Publishers, highlights important lives from all ages and areas of the Church. Some are familiar faces. Others are unexpected guests. But all, through their relationships, struggles, prayers, and desires, uniquely illuminate our shared experience.
Francis of Assisi has inspired the church for centuries. Francis took the gospel literally, following all that Jesus said and did without limit, and his devotion led to a life filled with miracles and wonders.
Born to a wealthy cloth merchant in Assisi, Italy, Francis didn't seem destined for the life of prayer and poverty that he chose. Bankrolled by his father, and with natural good looks and personality, Francis indulged in worldly pleasure. He had a ready wit, sang merrily, and delighted in fine clothes and showy display. Serious illness brought the young Francis to see the emptiness of his frolicking ways and led him to a life of prayer and unbridled devotion to Scripture. He gave over all his possessions to the poor and embraced a life of simplicity and poverty, transforming him from a self-centered youth to a man living for God and a model of complete obedience.
Gender roles have been debated for centuries, and now Sarah Bessey offers a clarion freedom call for all who want to realize their giftedness and potential in the kingdom of God. Through a thoughtful review of biblical teaching and church practices, Bessey shares how following Jesus made a feminist out of her.
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