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Preaching Politics: Proclaiming Jesus in an Age of Money, Power, and Partisanship

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Original price $19.99
Current price $13.99
SKU 9780827231344

By Clay Stauffer

BOOK PREVIEW

Religion, politics, and money. Three things you’re never supposed to discuss in polite company. But what if you’re a pastor? Forget red state/blue state divisions, what happens when your church members disagree about politics? In this age of prosperity preaching, how do you preach, “You cannot serve God and money?”

Clay Stauffer addresses the challenges that preachers face when serving a politically diverse congregation in Preaching Politics. Money, materialism, and their effects on modern-day faith and spirituality are viewed through the teachings of Jesus, as well as the work of Methodist pastor Adam Hamilton and Duke ethicist Stanley Hauerwas.

Endorsements

Preaching Politics is a compelling narrative that astutely examines the nexus between religion and politics, and the modern dilemmas faced today by the Christian church and people of faith. Clay Stauffer is a friend and Tennessee native who artfully draws from his own personal experiences to inform how our lives can continue to benefit and grow from the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” ―William H. Frist, MD, Former U.S. Senate Majority Leader

“Clay is a good man and a great preacher. He wrestles with the same issues as his large congregation, and helps them understand each other and, more importantly, Jesus. Preaching Politics gives everyone helpful advice for coping with many of the problems of today’s world. Clay is married to a physician, but he, too, is a healer.” ―Jim Cooper, U.S. Representative, Fifth District of Tennessee

"Clay Stauffer is a pastor who knows what it’s like firsthand to struggle with contemporary American sins, particularly the sin of our materialism. Like any good pastor Clay tries to listen to his congregation, listening also to some of the leading Christian thinkers. As he listens, he attempts to hear commonalities, opportunities for confluence of seemingly competing opinions, and in all things to build up the church as the Body of Christ with a responsibility to witness to God’s beloved but rebellious world. I learned from Clay’s book and commend it to churches struggling with fidelity to Christ in our American context." ―Will Willimon, Professor of the Practice of Christian Ministry, Duke Divinity School, and United Methodist Bishop, retired

"Preaching when done with reverence and authenticity is a sweet and brutal dance. When one dares wrestle with the issues of day the dance is guaranteed to throw the preacher and:or congregant off balance. Clay Stauffer's publication offers the reader a methodology of sacred balance to navigate the undercurrents of political ideas and prophetic witness. As a professor and pastor I hear the cries of students who desire to engage the world, but are afraid because of an insular tradition or general lack of exposure. This book provides a powerful witness and needed contribution to a discipline of study desperate for prophetic voices." ―Rev. Dr. Otis Moss III, Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church of Christ, Chicago

"Clay Stauffer brings a welcome voice of moderation to charged debates in American religion and politics. In the role of preacher to a widely diverse community, he urges us to let Jesus’ words be the point of reference. Seeking a place of unity, he nevertheless dares to wade into one of the trickiest areas of all - money and possessions - and gives us all something to think about." ―Sharon Watkins, General Minister and President of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and author of Whole: A Call to Unity in Our Fragmented World

"It is a mistake to think Jesus was not political. He led a movement of reform, preaching about the problems of empire, casting a vision of a heal and whole society in which those on the margins are seen and heard as leaders—one in which the hungry are fed, the destitute redeemed, and the strangers welcomed. The gospel is radical political business. Here is a book for our time, a time in which prophetic preaching must capture the imaginations and hearts of those in the pew to live God’s dream. Clay Stauffer uses the teachings of Jesus, and the work of Methodist pastor Adam Hamilton and Duke ethicist Stanley Hauerwas to encourage preaching for the polis—for the people, as he provides help for the visionary preacher in all of us." ―The Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis, Senior Minister, Middle Collegiate Church, and host, Just Faith at ShiftMSNBC

"Well I’ll say one thing for my friend, Clay Stauffer, he’s not afraid to take on the tough issues! Thankfully, he approaches these issues with a spirit of grace and a willingness to listen. The New Testament encourages us to 'speak the truth with love.' Clay’s new book attempts to do just that." ―Governor Bill Haslam, State of Tennessee

"Clay Stauffer takes a thoughtful approach to dealing with difficult political issues facing the church in an increasingly polarized and materialistic society. From his pulpit in a politically diverse and affluent congregation, Clay deals with these issues first hand.While this book will be a guide for pastors, it is just as relevant for those of us who sit in the pews." ― William F. Carpenter III, chairman and chief executive officer, LifePoint Health

"The preaching task may be harder than it has ever been and the temptation to make the task easier by avoiding topics listeners find uncomfortable is very much with us. It is this temptation Clay Stauffer faces in his important book. Preachers will see themselves and their churches on every page, and will find Stauffer an excellent conversation partner as they too face the 'preaching dilemma' together." ―William Brosend, The School of Theology, Sewanee, and Author of The Preaching of Jesus and James and Jude

"Clay Stauffer’s amazing book does two things to this wealthy septuagenarian: It brings me to my knees in prayer and challenges me to open my wallet and my life for spiritual warfare to a dying world." ―Cal Turner, Jr. former chairman and CEO, Dollar General

"Stauffer provides a helpful guide for understanding the need and biblical justification for preaching about the politically contentious issues of money, greed, and power within a capitalist society. With sound exegesis of key teachings of Jesus on money and faith, as well as robust theological engagement with Stanley Hauerwas and Adam Hamilton, this book is useful for both preaching and leading Bible studies. Stauffer encourages, equips and emboldens preachers to tackle these issues from the study and the pulpit with renewed confidence." ―The Rev. Dr. Leah D. Schade, Author, Creation-Crisis Preaching: Ecology, Theology, and the Pulpit

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