Item description for Post-Modern Pilgrims: First Century Passion for the 21st Century Church by Leonard Sweet...
Overview Written by the author of "A Cup of Coffee at the Soul Cafe, Postmodern Pilgrims" addresses and answers the tension that exists between church tradition and modern innovation and shows how the Gospel can be revived in every time and place.
Publishers Description There is a legend of a Welsh Prince Madoc whose ship became stuck in Chesapeake Bay. After trying unsuccessfully to escape, he had his men row out with the anchor, drop it as far into the sea as they could, and then the ship winched its way forward. The image of the church as a boat and tradition as an anchor is prevalent in Christian art. If we examine the biblical view of an anchor, we find, like Prince Madoc, we are to cast our anchor into the future and pull the church forward. Postmodern pilgrims must strive to keep the past and the future in perpetual conversation so every generation will find a fresh expression of the Gospel that is anchored solidly to "the faith that was once for all delivered."
Citations And Professional Reviews Post-Modern Pilgrims: First Century Passion for the 21st Century Church by Leonard Sweet has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Ministries Today - 12/01/2000 page 87
Publishers Weekly - 06/12/2000
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Studio: B&H Books
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.3" Width: 6.34" Height: 0.83" Weight: 1 lbs.
Release Date Jul 15, 2000
Publisher B&H Publishing Group
ISBN 0805421378 ISBN13 9780805421378
Availability 0 units.
More About Leonard Sweet
Leonard Sweet is a scholar of USAmerican culture; a semiotician who "sees things the rest of us do not see, and dreams possibilities that are beyond most of our imagining;" and a preacher and best-selling author who communicates the gospel with a signature bridging of the worlds of faith, academe, and popular culture. In 2006 and 2007, Len was voted by his peers “One of the 50 Most Influential Christians in America” by ChurchReport Magazine, and in 2010, he was selected by the top non-English Christian website as one of the “Top 10 Influential Christians of 2010.” His popular podcast, “Napkin Scribbles,” is widely quoted, and his weekly sermon contributions to sermons.com have made that site the top preaching resource for pastors in North America. For nine years, he and his wife wrote the entire content for the weekly preaching resource Homiletics. In 2005 Len introduced the first open-source preaching resource on the Web, wikiletics.com. Len’s microblogs on twitter and facebook rank as two of the most influential social media sites in the world. You can find some of Len’s talks on his youtube channel, www.youtube.com/lenssweetspots. Founder and President of SpiritVenture Ministries (SVM), in 1995 Len launched Sweet's SoulCafe, a spirituality newsletter purchased by Broadman&Holman Publishing. Len is a popular and highly sought-after speaker throughout North America and around the world. In the past couple of years he has spoken in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, England, Wales, South Africa, South Korea, Iceland, Scotland, and most recently, China, Indonesia, and Latvia.
Author of more than 200 hundred articles, 1300+ published sermons, and more than fifty books, Leonard Sweet’s publications include the best sellers Soul Tsunami, Aqua Church, Jesus Manifesto (with Frank Viola), and Jesus: A Theography (with Frank Viola), as well as many other volumes that are revolutionizing the church’s mission. Len released multiple books in 2012, including Viral: Why Social Media is Poised to Ignite Revival; What Matters Most; the e-book, Real Church in a Social Network World; I Am A Follower; The Greatest Story Never Told: Revive Us Again. In 2011 Len published his first novel, The Seraph Seal (co-authored with Lori Wagner) with an innovative website, www.seraphseal.com. Several more books are scheduled for release in 2013/14: the ground-breaking preaching textbook, Giving Blood: A Fresh New Paradigm for Preaching (Zondervan), The Well-Played Life (Tyndale), Me to We ( ), and a new way to tell the scriptures, My Story, My Song (with Byounho Zho). Len published the first religion e-book on amazon: The Dawn Mistaken for Dusk in 2000.
Currently the E. Stanley Jones Professor of Evangelism at Drew University, Madison, NJ and a Visiting Distinguished Professor at George Fox University, Portland, Oregon, Len was Vice President of Academic Affairs and Dean of the Theological School at Drew University from 1995 to 2001. Previous to Drew, Len served for eleven years as President and Professor of Church History at United Theological Seminary, Dayton, Ohio and is currently their President Emeritus. Prior to 1985, Len was Provost of Colgate Rochester/Bexley Hall/Crozer Divinity School in Rochester, New York when he was in his late 20s. Involved in leadership positions in the United Methodist Church, Len has been chosen to speak at various Jurisdictional and General Conferences as well as the 1996 World Methodist Congress in Rio de Janeiro. He also serves as a consultant to many of America's denominational leaders and agencies. He is a member of the West Virginia Annual Conference.
Leonard Sweet currently resides in Madison, in the state of New Jersey.
Reviews - What do customers think about Post-Modern Pilgrims: First Century Passion for the 21st Century Church?
Post-Modern Pilgrims Nov 4, 2006
This is a very good book I like it very much.
I would like to know how can I get the recipt from the books that I boght this year.
Lacks depth, critical thinking Aug 24, 2005
If you enjoy the average popular book on the shelf of your average Christian book store, like Purpose Driven Whatnot, you may enjoy this book. It is full of short anecdotes and cute stories, some mildly challenging and some entertaining.
If you are looking for a serious or critical discussion of post-modern thinking and how is does or does not jive with Christian thinking, look elsewhere.
Praise for Postmodernity Without the Critique Sep 22, 2004
Post-modernity is all the rage. It used to be that great epochs of history would be named and categorized only after the fact. Now, we try to define and judge history as it happens. It is probably fitting that in our wired world of blogs that our era of history would come with its own running commentary. Leonard Sweet, self-proclaimed theologian and futurist, offers his own commentary. He speaks to the Church in non-technical language about post-modernity and its implications for ministry.
Generally, I like Leonard Sweet. He is creative and fresh--witnessing to the relevancy of the gospel rather than trying to make it relevant. I have read a few of his other books, and I am a regular subscriber to his website for preachers, www.preachingplus.com. Overall, I am pleased with his book, "Post-Modern Pilgrims." Suggesting that we must continue to keep the past and the future in conversation is sound advice. His exegesis of modern American culture rings true, and it that light, his acronym EPIC is helpful. (Congregations need to promote consciously the ways in which their ministries area Experiential, Participatory, Image-driven, and Connected.)
Sadly, there are ways in which the book fails to go far enough. For all the talk of keeping the past and future in conversation, it is clear that the future dominates the book. The subtitle of the book is "First Century Passion for the 21st Century World." I would have loved some of that "first century passion." There is no extended treatment of how the early church understood itself or its mission, or why this might matter to the future of the church.
Although I tend to accept some of Sweet's concerns of modernity, he could sharpen his analysis. For example, Sweet asks the question, "Why has praise music been such a pet hate in so many church circles (pg 143)?" His answer may surprise you. The fault lies in the scientific method. I still cannot fathom how praise music is antithetical to the scientific method. Elsewhere, he suggests that modernity was "word-based" but post-modernity is "image-driven" (pg 89). The evidence for this switch, Sweet argues, is the importance of metaphor. However, what is metaphor if not "word-based"? Throughout the book, Sweet rejects modernity, while embracing the technology it has wrought.
The new world in which we live means the gospel should be expressed in new ways. However, I do not see in Leonard Sweet how the gospel critiques post-modernity. Could our over-reliance on technology be hurting real relationships? Could the 17th Century Reformers be right about their concern with icons and imagery? Could an ever expanding desire for experiences be idolatrous? Leonard Sweet praises the potentials for ministry in this post-modern period, yet the Church needs a better roadmap to navigate the pitfalls.
Well written and consise... Apr 24, 2004
I had quite a lengthy debate about the book with a fellow seminary student, and I think that some of my comments from that back and forth will best illustrate what Sweet's book is about:
"We must remember Sweet's authorial intent here: "This book begins with chapters of cultural analysis devoted to what each of these words means in the acronym EPIC. The book ends with a more theoretical analysis of the social forces and intellectual figures fashioning this EPIC model" (Sweet, 30). He is not attempting to give us a systematic theology of how to approach the culture. He is giving a broad overview of the culture which we must engage: this is an introductory work to a much larger issue; by nature it is a survey..."
"Scripture is not commanding that we up and leave this culture and do everything the opposite that everyone else does: scipture admonishes us that while we're in the midst of this crooked and perverse nation, that we ought to not touch the unclean thing... in other words, be separate in that we do not participate in things that are evil: not just culture in general. Was Paul wicked for "...mak[ing] [him]self a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible" (I Cor. 9:19)? Paul continues by saying, "To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God's law but am under Christ's law), so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all men so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings" (I Cor. 9:20-23). Would we be out of line saying, "To the Postmoderns I became as a Postmodern?" I do not think this to be the case. Yet Paul here was clearly conforming to these cultures. How could he justify that? The reason was that he wasn't doing things that were `unclean' in God's sight...just as there are many things in the culture that in and of themselves are not unclean, and the church can safely advocate those things, in books like Sweet's. Paul also uses culture to further the gospel in Acts 17:22-34, where he first assesses the culture (vs. 23) and then uses quotes from their own poets as an introduction to the gospel (vs. 28 - quote #1 is probably from Epimendes of Crete, and quote #2 is from Aratus's poem, "Phainomena")..."
What this book is really for is enabling us to understand better our culture so that we too can follow in the footsteps of Paul and "to the Jew be a Jew to the Greek be a Greek, and to the Post-modern be a post-modern." In this regard, the book is excellent.
I really enjoyed this book. His EPIC paradigm is a very accurate assesment of where things are at these days, and actually provides some good handles for how to embrace postmodernity. I got sick of books on postmodernism a few years ago since they all seemed to say the same exact things, and few offered anything helpful. This happened shortly after I bought this book, so I had it on my shelf for a few years until I recenetly had a conversation with someone who mentioned it. Thought I'd give it a read and wished I had back when it came out. The book is built around Sweet's contension that today's culture is EPIC...Experiential, Participatory, Image-Based, and Connected. In terms of those observations, Sweet it out of the park. Even in most of his ideas he is right on. I'm not crazy about how a lot of "pomo" writing talks about "going back in history"...and making things more liturgical. I get some of it, but it's just not me. I'm not that emotional/contemplative of a guy to get it I guess. It actually seems like things aren't leaning that way too much anymore, which is cool to see. It just felt to me like a lot of people said, "hey postmodernism is a problem and we've got the solution", in their books, which turned me off. Sweet pretty much stays away from some of those temptations in this book and offers a practical, helpful, easy-to-read book! He also gives some great insights into why the younger generations act why they do, which is very insightful, and probably worth the price of the book. Definitely worth reading...