Looking for God’s Fingerprint

A Feature Review of

Burning Bush 2.0: How Pop Culture Replaced the Prophet
Paul Asay

Paperback: Abingdon Press, 2015
Buy now: [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]


Reviewed by Danny Wright


In Burning Bush 2.0: How Pop Culture Replaced the Prophet, Paul Asay, from the often-visited website www.unplugged.com, takes the reader on a journey through pop culture’s music, movies, television shows and video games in order to experience God’s message that extends to each of us through those various forms of communication. Asay knows that we search for God in all of our stories and that we need to make sure we do not miss his revelations as we live in this storied existence. He wants to help us hone our ability to be sensitive to the Spirit’s guidance as we live, move and have our being in God and shuffle through this God-created, God-soaked and God-sustained world in which He is not very far from any one of us. Each chapter begins with a quote that focuses the reader and prepares them for the journey of the following pages as he begins to bounce back and forth through a variety of references to well-known media.

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Here are 5 essential ebooks on sale now that are worth checking out:
(Rachel Held Evans, Umberto Eco, Diana Butler Bass, Calvin Miller, MORE)

Via our sister website Thrifty Christian Reader
To keep up with all the latest ebook deals,
be sure to connect with TCR via email or on Facebook



Faith Unraveled: How a Girl Who Knew All the Answers Learned to Ask Questions

Rachel Held Evans

*** $2.99 ***



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Come Listen. Come Learn.

A Review of 

A Faithful Farewell: Living Your Last Chapter With Love
Marilyn Chandler McEntyre

Paperback: Eerdmans, 2015
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]   [ Kindle ]
Reviewed by Brandon Waite


My first night as an on-call chaplain, I came to know how little I know.

I’m a seminary grad, so it’s not as if I know nothing about matters of ultimate concern. I can speak of pain and suffering, death and dying, theodicy and providence as ancillary pieces of the grander theological project. I can define the terms and review the books. I can document sources and fill up pages, if that’s what it takes to make the grade.

But as my body lay taught and shivering under the cheap hospital blankets my first night in the chaplains’ on-call room—praying for a night of silence and peace—I realized how little those words have to do with the work of this place. When I of speak of death and dying here, amidst the acrid mix of sanitized countertops overfull bedpans, I speak in abstraction and jargon, the foreign tongue of a distant land.
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Sunday (Oct. 4) is the birthday of renowned Theologian Walter Rauschenbusch…

Rauschenbusch’s view of Christianity was that its purpose was to spread a Kingdom of God, not through a fire and brimstone style of preaching but by leading a Christlike life. Rauschenbusch did not view Jesus’ death as an act of substitutionary atonement but in his words, he died “to substitute love for selfishness as the basis of human society.” He wrote that “Christianity is in its nature revolutionary” and tried to remind society of that. He explained that the Kingdom of God “is not a matter of getting individuals to heaven, but of transforming the life on earth into the harmony of heaven.” (via Wikipedia)

In honor of the occasion we offer 7 of his books that can be read in full here, or downloaded as FREE PDF ebooks via Google Books.

1) A Theology for the Social Gospel


FREE PDF ebook edition!
via Google Books


NEXT BOOK >>>>>>

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Today is the birthday of novelist Graham Greene, born 1904.

“Graham Greene is perhaps the most perplexing of all the literary converts whose works animated the Catholic literary revival in the 20th century. His visions of angst and guilt, informed and sometimes deformed by a deeply felt religious sensibility, make his novels, and the characters that adorn them, both fascinating and unforgettable.

His fiction is gripping because it grapples with faith and disillusionment on the shifting sands of uncertainty in a relativistic age. His tormented characters are the products of Greene’s own tortured soul, and one suspects that he was more baffled than anyone else at the contradictions at the core of his own character and, in consequence, at the heart of the characters that his fertile and fetid imagination had created.”

– Joseph Pearce, “Graham Greene: Doubter Par Excellence

*** Books by Graham Greene ***

Here is a British documentary “England Made Me” (in four parts) that serves as a wonderful intro to Greene’s life and work:

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Comfort to the Wounded

A Review of

Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better
Brant Hansen   

Paperback: W Publishing Group, 2015
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

Reviewed by Katherine Hiegel

There’s no such thing as righteous anger, according to Brent Hansen.

Really? Was this, I wondered, another trite “feel-good-because-love-wins” book? I’ll admit it: I started out skeptical. As a matter of fact, I found myself feeling a little indignant by Unoffendable’s entire premise. I recognized the irony of that, so I decided to go into the book with an open (albeit discerning) mind. And my findings were surprising.

Ultimately, Hansen builds a plausible and compelling case by using Scripture and, especially, the example of Jesus as his guides.

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Here are a few new book releases from this week that are worth checking out:

(Where possible, we have also tried to include a review/interview related to the book…)


The Heart Goes Last: A Novel

By Margaret Atwood

Read the NY Times review of this novel


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Beauty, Lament, Hope, Justice

A Feature Review of 

Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God
Kelly Douglas Brown

Paperback: Orbis Books, 2015
Buy now:  [ Amazon ]  [ Kindle ]

Reviewed by Josiah Daniels

If the cover art of Kelly Brown Douglas’s most recent book doesn’t compel you, what’s inside surely will. Douglas’s Stand Your Ground is a challenging and timely commentary on America’s original sin: the plunder of the black body. What makes this book unique is Douglas’s awareness of contemporary events along with a keen ability to parse out the ways in which the past is connected to contemporary situations.

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Here are 5 essential ebooks on sale now that are worth checking out:
(Sarah Bessey, N.T. Wright, Yogi Berra, MORE)

Via our sister website Thrifty Christian Reader
To keep up with all the latest ebook deals,
be sure to connect with TCR via email or on Facebook



Jesus Feminist: An Invitation to Revisit the Bible’s View of Women

Sarah Bessey

*** $1.99 ***



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The Redemption of Desire

A Feature Review of

Spiritual Friendship: Finding Love in the Church as a Celibate Gay Christian
Wesley Hill

Paperback: Brazos Press, 2015.
Buy now: [ Amazon ] [ Kindle ]


Reviewed by Tim Otto.


*** This review first appeared in our print edition (Summer 2015)
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Wesley Hill’s spectacular new book, Spiritual Friendship, explores one way gay Christians—especially those who embrace the traditional teaching of the church—are a gift to the church. As friendship has been eclipsed in western culture by romantic love, perhaps in God’s surprising and beautiful design, queer Christians might perhaps be the ones who help the church revive Christ’s commandment: that Christians love their friends sacrificially.  Spiritual Friendship displays Hill’s considerable intellect, pulls from an astonishing variety of sources, and inspires with its beautiful prose.

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