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Where Have All the Prophets Gone?: Reclaiming Prophetic Preaching in America [Hardcover]

By Marvin McMickle (Author)
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Item description for Where Have All the Prophets Gone?: Reclaiming Prophetic Preaching in America by Marvin McMickle...

Prophetic preaching in the American pulpit has suffered a decline in the last 20-25 years. Several things are to blame: an overzealous preoccupation with praise and worship; a false and narrow view of patriotism; and a focus on prosperity and personal enrichment themes. This book is a call for preachers to learn the importance of keeping their eyes on the vision of Jesus and biblical prophets when preaching - that of doing justice, caring for others, and being equitable. It attempts to make a biblical argument for the importance and the content of prophetic preaching, and argues that the issue is not preaching from a text taken from the prophetic corpus but preaching on the themes that echoed over and over from the biblical prophets themselves.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Pilgrim Press, The
Pages   160
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.1" Width: 5.1" Height: 0.8"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Oct 31, 2006
Publisher   Pilgrim Press
ISBN  0829817204  
ISBN13  9780829817201  

Availability  0 units.

More About Marvin McMickle

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Marvin A. McMickle is pastor of Antioch Baptist Church (National Baptist Convension) in Cleveland, Ohio, and a past president of both the Cleveland NAACP and the Greater Cleveland Urban League. He is also professor of homiletics at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ashland.Ohio.

Marvin A. McMickle currently resides in Cleveland, in the state of Ohio.

Marvin A. McMickle has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Elements of Preaching
  2. Living Church
  3. Star Books

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Clergy > Preaching

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Pastoral Help > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Where Have All the Prophets Gone?: Reclaiming Prophetic Preaching in America?

Where Have All The Prophets Gone?  Apr 30, 2007
Here's black writing-as-preaching at its most passionate, biblically enlightened, and intelligent (he has a couple of earned Drs).

When (American) preaching isn't prophetic you won't hear anything about the two million persons packed into overcrowded prisons, most of them for drug-related offences that could be treated more effectively and at a fraction of the cost; or the 46 million persons without medical insurance; or the still-prevailing racism and sexism. Instead there's an emphasis on just two `justice' issues: abortion and same-sex marriage; the emergence of an oxymoron called patriot pastors; a focus on `praise and worship' that doesn't result in compassionate discipleship; and finally the vile messages of prosperity theology which have dominated the preaching of televangelists and many pulpits.

Where have all the prophets gone?
Gone in search of megachurches, every one.

Where have all the prophets gone?
Gone in search of faith-based funding, every one./

Where have all the prophets gone?
Gone in search of personal comfort, every one.

Where have all the prophets gone?
Gone in search of political correctness, every one.

Where have all the prophets gone?
Gone into a ministry that places praise over speaking truth to the powers, every one./

When will they ever learn? When will they ever learn?

The book ends with a magnificent sermon on the Pledge of Allegiance to the American flag where he takes to task those who oppose the inclusion of the phrase `under God'. One nation? What about he great divide between rich and poor? Liberty and justice for all? When over two million people are in prison? Republic? The inference is that no one is more important than anyone else and where everybody's vote is supposed to count. But `what kind of republic allows what happened in Florida in the 2000 election? Indivisible? `We are divided by race, by region (ask the people in New Orleans whether we are indivisible).

And McMickle's own moving story: His father abandoned the family when he was ten years old. Later, his mother tried to enroll in the music department at Moody Bible Institute, but was denied admission because she was a divorcee!'

Buy this powerful and moving book, read it, and suggest your pastor preach from it (if he/she is game!).

Rowland Croucher
A Must Read for All Preachers  Mar 15, 2007
"Where Have All the Prophets Gone" is a book that challenges the church to reclaim the prophetic tradition in the light of a world that seems to have lost her way. Marvin McMickle spends a great deal of time discussing the relevant issues in the public eye that cry out for reclamation of the prophetic tradition. McMickle also discusses what pastors ought to be saying in light of the prophetic tradition versus what pastors are actually saying. He breaks down his critique of pastors and clergy who have lost the prophetic way with a stinging diatribe, and urges the people of God to turn back from their wickedness and ignorance and preach the prophetic message. McMickle brings forth a conversation that needs to be heard.

Marvin McMickle contends that the absence of a prophetic voice is likely the most glaring deficiency in the church today. As Christendom faces challenges from contemporary culture on all sides McMickle forces us to ask ourselves the question, "where is the voice of the prophet"? The book examines the question, "If biblical prophets were to speak the very same words to the church today, how would the church respond?" McMickle attacks this question by examining selected texts from the Bible and examining the potential relevance of those texts to the church today. He asks the church to listen "again" to the voice of the prophet and allow the prophet to speak to us. He also asks that we begin to formulate an appropriate response to the church itself and to the world. The book gives a very comprehensive overview of what godly justice should look like. One of the most significant properties of the prophetic office is its voice. The prophets spoke the oracles of God to the people of God. Prophetic oracles may have been committed to written form for posterity, but McMickle reminds us that it is important to remember that these oracles were originally spoken. Judging by their content, they were spoken with great power and authority. They were spoken in a manner that people had to take note. The people may not have listened, but the prophet was going to be heard and today. McMickle stops just short of saying that there is no prophetic voice to be heard in the church today. He unapologetically say that those who claim to be the voice of the prophet, like the prophetic conferences that McMickle speaks of, are failing horribly in their attempts to reclaim a prophetic tradition. These are the "Justice Sunday's" that are being held by the "Focus on the Family" and "James Dobson" groups out in Louisville, Kentucky. McMickle talks about these services in chapter two of the book. They narrowly focus their pursuit of justice on two issues, abortion and gay rights. As they do this, they ignore the larger issues of poverty, the war in Iraq, lack of equity in education and the like. McMickle also addresses the fact that the prophet needed to be able to say that which others were afraid to say. The nature of the prophet's oracles suggests that the prophet had to be willing to say that which was not going to be popular or well received. As evidenced in Amos 7:12-13, "And Amaziah said to Amos, `O seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, earn your bread there, and prophesy there; but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king's sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom.'" Amaziah seems to have shut his ears to the prophet's oracles. Not only did Amaziah not want to hear the prophet's declarations, but he did not want any one else to hear them either. Is it that those in power do not want to hear a true prophetic voice, and that our churches have become afraid to say that which is not popular? McMickle challenges the church on this issue. Like Amaziah, are we afraid to allow the prophet's words to be heard in the sanctuary of God? The prophet's voice made him into Yahweh's spokesman. The prophet had to be the voice of those who were powerless to speak for themselves. The prophets delivered devastating speeches aimed at the system. In a sense, they attacked all that the people thought of as right and just. What a shock to the peoples, the church's systems! Imagine that what you thought was right was really wrong and what you thought was wrong was really right? What would that do to your world? McMickle challenges the church to think about this.

To delve deeper into these issues, read, God's Politics(Wallis) and Democracy Matters(West).

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