Christianity Today’s 2016 Book Award Winners
Each year Christianity Today announces a selection of books they feel are most likely to shape evangelical life, thought, and culture. We are pleased the editors have selected four Zondervan Academic titles for inclusion in their 2016 list.
The Pastor Theologian by Gerald Hiestand and Todd Wilson, Award of Merit for The Church/Pastoral Leadership; From Dependence to Dignity, by Brian Fikkert and Russell Mask, Award of Merit for Missions/The Global Church; Their Rock Is Not Like Our Rock by Daniel Strange, Award of Merit for Theology/Ethics; Malestrom by Carolyn Custis James, Winner for Her.meneutics.
These books represent this year’s crop of important resources touching on the Bible, the church, theology, missions and other perennial matters of faith. They are the perfect last-minute gift for someone you know, or even for…
What Do Deborah and Barak Want to Tell Complementarians and Egalitarians?
More women are occupying positions of leadership than ever before. Yet the jury seems evenly split whether such changes should be welcomed or resisted—both outside and inside the Church. As Carolyn Custis James explains in her new book Malestrom:
Plenty of Christian men welcome these changes and in fact have advocated for them. But others view the rise of women with concern, even alarm, and strive to stem the tide. The belief in a zero-sum game between the genders, where gains for women represent losses for men, makes the rise of women difficult to swallow. (98)
Alarm and advocacy, two positions on either side of the contemporary gender debate. But what does the Bible say? Enter Deborah and Barak, a “gender minefield” story…
3 Ways the Gospel Reoriented a 1st-Century ISIS Leader: Race, Patriarchy, Class
The images have been chilling and all too common: Masked figures staring into the camera in the desert or at sea-side locations before beheading Christians.
What if one of them wanted to talk with you about a dream he had where a man said, ‘You are killing my people’?
That’s what happened to a Middle East YWAM worker. He was introduced to an ISIS fighter who had killed many Christians and wanted to follow Jesus after dreaming of a man in white.
Like Saul of Tarsus, Muslims gripped by the malestrom are being radically transformed because of their encounters with Jesus. According to Carolyn Custis James, author of Malestrom, this makes perfect sense: “Jesus’ gospel has a subversive power to reach behind enemy lines, draw men to Jesus, and…
Extracurricular Activities 6.6.15 —American Baptists, 1 Enoch, and Stage Two Exile
The malestrom — the ways in which the fall impacts the male of the human species, causing man to lose himself, his identity and purpose as a man, and above all to lose sight of God’s original vision for his sons — poses one of the most serious historic challenges to the gospel.
Does the gospel have anything better to offer men than a kinder, gentler patriarchy? Is the gospel able to fill the manhood void with an indestructible identity and calling that cover the entire cultural spectrum and the complete lifespan of a man’s life — no matter how long or how short that may be or how his story plays out?
The Message of Circumcision: From Patriarchy to New Man — An Excerpt from “Malestrom”
In her new book Malestrom, Carolyn Custis James’s contends the principal expression of the problem of manhood is historic patriarchy. Though it’s the cultural background of much of the Bible, “God reveals the newness of his kingdom breaking through as he over turns cultural norms that issues from the fall of Adam and Eve.” (69)
One way he overturned this norm was through the practice of circumcision. And yet James asks an important question:
Why would God choose this explicitly male rite to remind his sons of his covenant with them?
Though it seems to smack of patriarchy, it does the opposite: “Circumcision strips the malestrom and human culture of its power to define a man’s identity and purpose.” (71)
This Major Biblical Theme Is a Surprising Root of the Manhood Problem
Single motherhood is becoming the new norm for how children are raised. In 2014:
4 out 10 children were born to unwed mothers; More than 80% of all single-parent families in America are headed by women; 1 in 4 children (17.4 million) are being raised without a father.
Carolyn Custis James calls this new fatherless norm an “epidemic” in her new book Malestrom, which explores, clarifies, and remedies the problem of manhood. She argues this fatherhood disaster stems from “a powerful malestrom undertow,” (78) resulting in violence, patriarchy, and male identity confusion.
Surprisingly, not only is this major feature of the malestrom a major theme of the male experience. It’s also a major biblical theme.
Some of us understand it well. It’s what James calls the father wound.
Father Wound Defined
James contends the root cause of much…
What Is Jesus’ Definition of Manhood? — An Excerpt from “Malestrom” by Carolyn Custis James
In her new book Malestrom, Carolyn Custis James has spotlighted a painful reality: “Men have lost sight of who God created them to be as human beings and as men.” (21)
How do men regain their God-created identity? By embracing Jesus’s definition of what it means to be a man:
Jesus’ definition of manhood is every man’s true identity and calling—his birthright. It encompasses everything about who he is and every second of his life. (182)
What does image bearing look like in the life of Jesus? It includes several important markers:
Attention to relationship with God; Acting in step with his Father; Opposing pride and self-importance; Inversion of the malestrom social structures
James calls Jesus’ definition of manhood a “staggering proposition.”…
The Insidious Link Between the Crisis of Masculinity and Violence — An Excerpt from “Malestrom” by Carolyn Custis James
A leading psychologist recently warned that young men are facing a crisis of masculinity due to excessive use of video games and pornography.
His research confirms what Carolyn Custis James prophetically identifies, explores, and addresses in her new book Malestrom:
Men have lost sight of who God created them to be as human beings and as men. (21)
Video games and pornography are twin polarities of the fonte that’s feeding and fostering this global crisis of masculinity: violence.
The excerpt below sets the stage for her book by outlining the underestimated, insidious connection between the crisis of masculinity and violence.
“What has until recently gone unnoticed,” James notes, “is how the malestrom touches down in the lives of men and boys who on the surface…seem to escape all…