Teacher, Guide, Companion
Rediscovering Jesus in a Secular World
Erik Walker Wikstrom
“He lived over two thousand years ago in a small town in a backwater province. He spent his entire life in an area slightly smaller than the state of Vermont. Yet this Jewish peasant—born to unwed teenage parents—continues to fascinate people, believers and nonbelievers alike. Who was he—What are we to make of the claims made on his behalf? And what, if anything, does it mean in the twenty-first century to profess to have a relationship with him?”
—from the Introduction
Drawing from the personal experiences of a seasoned pastor, a team of modern liberal scholars, and the gospel accounts of the life of Jesus of Nazareth, Teacher, Guide, Companion challenges readers to reexamine their own relationship with Jesus Christ and its significance in the 21st century. Integrating both secular and religious source materials, Wikstrom demonstrates how a close examination of historical findings and the Gospels can lead to a renewed faith in Jesus Christ. The field of Jesus studies, which is widely dominated by academics, will benefit from the analysis by a working minister.
Erik Walker Wikstrom has a master’s in divinity from Harvard Divinity School and advanced training in spiritual guidance from the Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation.
Praise for Teacher, Guide, Companion:
“The field of Jesus study
needs to broaden so that it is the active pastors not the professional scholars,
who are saying these things. This book will surely help.”
—Bishop John Shelby Spong, 8th Bishop of Newark, author of Why Christianity Must Change or Die and A New Christianity for a New World
“Here’s a clear and
accessible account of modern critical scholarship on Jesus and the gospels for
those who want to bring their hearts along with their heads in the quest for
—Stephen J. Patterson, author of The God of Jesus
“Drawing on both personal experience and his broad exploration
of recent interpreters of Jesus, Wikstrom brings the modern spiritual seeker a
fresh and inviting view of the historical and living figure of Jesus of
Nazareth. He boldly moves beyond Jesus as strictly a moral teacher, helping us
to see him as a God-filled person who draws us into a personal relationship,
through which we are opened more fully to the mystery of divine love and human
freedom. This book will especially appeal to people educated with a modern world
view who have had difficulties appreciating Jesus' giftedness for us and who are
open to a new understanding of his vision and way.”
—Rev. Dr. Tilden Edwards, Founder and Senior Fellow, Shalem Institute for Spiritual Formation
curiosity about the work of the Jesus Seminar or the writings of Bishop John
Shelby Spong will find Teacher, Guide, Companion an excellent place to
begin. This book is the perfect basis for fruitful discussions by skeptics and
believers open to an exploration of what Jesus of Nazareth might offer them in
their search for truth and meaning.”
—James R. Adams, President, The Center for Progressive Christianity
For more information contact skinnerhouse @ uua.org.
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Last updated on Wednesday, June 2, 2010.