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Christ in Crisis: Why We Need to Reclaim Jesus (Hardcover)
Writing in response to our current “constitutional crisis,” New York Times bestselling author and Christian activist Jim Wallis urges America to return to the tenets of Jesus once again as the means to save us from the polarizing bitterness and anger of our tribal nation.
In Christ in Crisis Jim Wallis provides a path of spiritual healing and solidarity to help us heal the divide separating Americans today. Building on “Reclaiming Jesus”—the declaration he and other church leaders wrote in May 2018 to address America’s current crisis—Wallis argues that Christians have become disconnected from Jesus and need to revisit their spiritual foundations. By pointing to eight questions Jesus asked or is asked, Wallis provides a means to measure whether we are truly aligned with the moral and spiritual foundations of our Christian faith.
“Christians have often remembered, re-discovered, and returned to their obedient discipleship of Jesus Christ—both personal and public—in times of trouble. It’s called coming home,” Wallis reminds us. While he addresses the dividing lines and dangers facing our nation, the religious and cultural commentator’s focus isn’t politics; it’s faith.
As he has done throughout his career, Wallis offers comfort, empathy, and a practical roadmap. Christ in Crisis is a constructive field guide for all those involved in resistance and renewal initiatives in faith communities in the post-2016 political context.
About the Author
Jim Wallis is the author of the New York Times bestseller God's Politics, which electrified Americans disenchanted with how the Right had co-opted all talk about integrating religious values into our politics by offering an alternative voice. Wallis is a leading figure at the crossroads of religion and politics in America today, the author of eight books, and the founder of Sojourners, a global faith and justice network. He is a public theologian, an internationally renowned speaker and preacher, a faith-based activist, husband, and father to two young boys, and a Little League baseball coach.
“Jim Wallis gives us a book that could be titled Following Jesus Again for the First Time. With prophetic fire, he makes the case that our political and religious crises arise from a failure of following the Jesus of the New Testament. Read this book and go deep.”
— Diana Butler Bass, author of Grateful: The Subversive Practice of Giving Thanks
“For far too long, we’ve ceded the power and person of Jesus to political movements with no ambitions toward His radical love. Reclaiming Jesus is not only our responsibility, it is necessary now more than ever. This is a book for all God’s people.”
— Brittany Packnett, co-founder of Campaign Zero
“Jim Wallis offers a challenging and focusing return to the deep Gospel wellspring of our faith that has served us in many troubled times and places across the centuries. As one who struggles daily to have my faith inform my service, I’m grateful for this timely work.”
— Senator Chris Coons
“Powerful. Profound. Prophetic. Jim Wallis has written a book that should shake the foundation of every Christian in the country, a call to be a true follower of Jesus in these dark times. Jesus is not the possession of those who have reconciled themselves to the world as it is.”
— Eddie S. Glaude, Jr., James S. McDonnell Distinguished University Professor, Princeton University
“This is Jim Wallis at his best, a ‘Jesus book’ better than any I’ve seen in some time, and could not be more timely or more challenging. It offers a drink of fresh water to anyone who has felt despair at the state of the world—Christian and non-Christian alike.”
— Richard Rohr, author of The Universal Christ
“To choose to follow Jesus is necessarily to engage in a quarrel with the world. For fifty years, Jim Wallis has worked to help Americans remember the politics of Jesus. His Christ in Crisis is a timely reminder of what it means to confess, ‘Jesus is Lord.’”
— William J. Barber, II, President of Repairers of the Breach & co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival
“Hold this book in your hands like a moral compass. With mastery and clarity, Jim Wallis has crafted a handbook for our times—a way to interpret Jesus’ life and wisdom for a nation in crisis, to inspire Christians and non-Christians alike in the labor of love and justice.”
— Valarie Kaur, Sikh activist and founder of the Revolutionary Love Project
“Jim Wallis is faithful, relentless, and intrepid in voicing the prophetic reality of Gospel faith. He does not flinch at truth-telling, and he is not weary of hope-telling. This book will provide energy, grit, and courage for the living of these days.”
— Walter Brueggemann, author of The Prophetic Imagination
“America yearns for an appropriate reintroduction to the person named Jesus. For years, Jesus has been hidden by shallow religion and dishonest commentary. Jim Wallis reclaims and reintroduces us to a radical spiritual figure even non-believers will find inspiring. “
— Otis Moss III, Senior Pastor, Trinity United Church of Christ
“In times that test who we are as a nation and a people, Reverend Wallis leads us to the lifeboat that has been there for us all along: faith. Christ in Crisis reminds us that acts of compassion, service, and dignity are the path towards a stronger, kinder nation.”
— Congressman Joe Kennedy
“Jim Wallis offers those weary of our world’s hopelessness a choice and a way out. A compelling ‘must read’ for those seeking to follow Jesus by loving the ‘neighbor’ who is not like us, as the first step in reclaiming Jesus and ending the crisis of our time!”
— Barbara Williams-Skinner, President, Skinner Leadership Institute
“The Quran says that Jesus is a wonder and a mercy to humankind. In this book Jim Wallis shows us just how much we need to return to those central Jesus qualities, and to embody them ourselves. It is a book that is both timely and timeless.”
— Eboo Patel, Author of Out of Many Faiths: Religious Diversity and the American Promise
“Jim Wallis, one of our great moral voices, seeks to return to the heart of Christianity in this essential book of practical spirituality for our times. Only by focusing on Jesus’ invitation to radical discipleship can we ‘reclaim’ him and revitalize the notion of what it means to be Christian.”
— James Martin SJ, author of Building a Bridge
“Long one of America’s most rhetorically powerful, politically influential and morally courageous religious voices, Jim Wallis serves that role again with this compelling new book. He offers a blueprint of how to create a more just, compassionate, peaceful and equitable nation in terms accessible to all, regardless of religious belief.”
— David Saperstein, Director and Counsel of the Religious Action Center of Reformed Judaism
“We live in a time of wolves in sheep’s clothing, with leaders of Christian communities idolizing a person whose actions undermine the safety of this country. Such profound self-delusion threatens the church’s very survival. Jim Wallis asks eight questions which every person who aspires to follow Christ must answer.”
— T Bone Burnett, music producer
“We live in a moment where attacks on humane values—supported by millions of purported Christians—must be met not by cynicism or despair but by retrieving the deepest sources of our deepest values. Wallis shows that we cannot serve both Trump and Jesus. Who will it be?”
— David P. Gushee, Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics, Mercer University
“Some Christians believe Jesus is an advance man for ‘Make America Great Again’, but for those who long to restore the church’s integrity, this is a must-read book. Wallis, a present-day prophet, teaches us to struggle for love, truth, and justice while resisting the seductions of political power.”
— Parker J. Palmer, author of On the Brink of Everything
“Wallis courageously calls us to de-Americanize the Gospel and reclaim Jesus. Take and read; these words will feed your heart, and if heeded, heal the soul of the nation. Wallis resurrects the spiritual wisdom and moral clarity so desperately needed to speak words of prophetic power, integrity, and truth.”
— Wesley Granberg-Michaelson, author Future Faith: Ten Challenges Reshaping Christianity in the 21st Century
“Jim Wallis reminds us that the core of Christianity is not a policy or a principle but a person—Jesus Christ. For anyone who wants to carefully ponder how to live as a person of faith, a loving neighbor, and a concerned citizen…Christ in Crisis is an indispensable guide.”
— Jemar Tisby, author of The Color of Compromise
“Wallis is a Bonhoeffer for our times. In this prophetic call, he recalibrates a faith that has lost its spiritual, moral, and social bearings. Christ in Crisis is a gift to every Christian. It’s hard to put down, and will need to be picked back up many, many times.”
— Rob Schenck, author of Costly Grace: An Evangelical Minister’s Rediscovery of Faith, Hope and Love
“At times like this, it is hard to keep the faith. Jim Wallis provides guidance in his brilliant book, Christ in Crisis, which should be required reading for all who aspire to serve or lead, aiming to create a ‘more perfect Union’ for everyone, Christians and non-Christians alike.”
— Eliseo V. Medina, Labor Activist and Immigration Reform Advocate
“A spiritual health-check for the ailing, wheezing American body-politic. As Jim writes, ‘Don’t go right, don’t go left; go deeper.’”
“The gospel of Jesus is urgently needed and gravely at risk, as many in and of the church have placed it in public derision through unconscionable alliances of power. Jim Wallis calls us anew to the gospel of Jesus that is always relevant for our personal and public lives.”
— Mark Labberton, President, Fuller Theological Seminary
“In this stimulating analysis Wallis asserts that Christianity is in decline as the result of a distance between Christians and the daily practices of Jesus. In eight questions, he looks at concerns Jesus raised and discusses how the lessons of the gospels apply to the current cultural and political climate.”
— Publishers Weekly
“Wallis concludes that our hope isn’t in politics but in the renewal of faith and a revival of moral conscience. Thoughtful and intended to provoke spirited discussion, Wallis’s book is a forceful invitation to reclaim Jesus.”