Jesus and the Family: Crisis and Conversion in the American Household

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9781610979078: Jesus and the Family: Crisis and Conversion in the American Household
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There are few more loaded words in American life than "family" Jesus grew up in one and honored his parents in fulfillment of the commandments. But his teachings on family life stand among the most jarring things he ever said. Jesus invites serious followers to "hate" mother and father. He predicts discipleship will bring division rather than peace to family life. He completely recasts the definition of kinship as "whoever does the will of God" In an era when families face unprecedented challenges sticking together for the long haul, Jesus's words at first glance seem to welcome disintegration of the Christian household rather than offering healing and a clear way forward. This book examines the off-putting words of Jesus in the wider context of radical allegiance and baptismal priority. In a country where family devotion is akin to honoring the national flag, Honeycutt unpacks an old word for a new generation of Christians called to place Jesus first in all things. It's only then that we'll be able to truly help those who share a common roof and lineage.

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About the Author:

Frank G. Honeycutt is pastor of St. John's Lutheran Church in Walhalla, South Carolina. He is the author of seven books, including The Truth Shall Make You Odd: Speaking with Pastoral Integrity in Awkward Situations and Marry a Pregnant Virgin: Unusual Bible Stories for New and Curious Christians. Honeycutt is a regular contributor to The Christian Century and The Lutheran.

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''Honeycutt sees Jesus slowly turning his gaze toward American family life, and sure enough, bombs explode in every chapter. Honeycutt employs his wit, insight, and engaging writing style to disclose how the gospel of Jesus exposes the superficialities of our conventional family dynamics and continually calls us to a deeper faith and a richer life together.''
--Thomas G. Long, Candler School of Theology

''In Jesus and the Family we discover that the dilemmas and struggles of being a family today are not unique to our time, but are a part of God's wider, deeper story of forgiveness and hope. I couldn't help but think as Frank wrote about the significance of Mary's pondering over the birth of Jesus just how many parts of his book caused me to pause and ponder what it means to live as disciples of Jesus today.''
--Bishop Herman Yoos, SC Synod of the ELCA

''Jesus just could not play Mr. Good Guy. That sweet soul we knew from Sunday school is not the one Frank Honeycutt brings us in Jesus and the Family. Honeycutt's Jesus sassed his mother. . . . This Jesus was divine to the core--and still human enough to understand us, as we need so desperately. This is a superbly human little book. Simplicity is one of Honeycutt's many gifts to readers. Depth and humor are among others.''
--Dot Jackson, Birchwood Center for Arts and Folklife --Wipf and Stock Publishers

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