Proclaiming the Parables (Hardback)

Preaching and Teaching the Kingdom of God

  • 9780664268619
  • 6 X 9
  • 456
  • 200.00
  • Hardback
  • 0664268617
  • 3/11/2024
  • In Stock
$ 50.00

Description

In Proclaiming the Parables, noted preacher and scholar Thomas G. Long moves away from past treatment of the parables primarily as literary devices and moves toward an emphasis on their theological impact as pointers to the kingdom of God.

While the parables are indeed significant poetic literary creations that have enchanted readers over the centuries, their main power, he claims, lies in their disclosure of the kingdom of God, which is not merely an idea, nor even just a complex symbol with generative and centrifugal force, but an event: the inbreaking of the life of God into human history and experience.

Long sees parables not merely as creative figures of speech but as GPS devices taking hearers to those places where the event of God is happening all around us. This book provides two chapters for each synoptic Gospel. The first focuses on the Gospel as a whole and the parables’ place in it, and the second provides preachers and teachers with detailed exegetical and homiletical commentary for each major parable in that Gospel. Two introductory chapters additionally situate this book in the history and theology of the parables’ interpretation and address questions that preachers have about preaching the parables. Preachers who consult this volume will be informed about each major parable, guided through the controversies regarding interpretation, and stimulated to preach on the parable in fresh, faithful, and creative ways.

Product Excerpts and Related Resources


Reviews

"Every generation of preachers has a regularly visited bookshelf with volumes written by the finest minds of their times, promising to strike sparks they can coax into flame by the time Sunday morning comes around again.Tom Long's books have delivered on that promise for at least two generations now. With this new volume, he secures his legacy for generations to come—not only by offering his readers new ways of thinking about the purpose of the parables but also by nourishing us with his own powerful way of pointing to God's kingdom in our midst." —Barbara Brown Taylor, author of Always a Guest

"This book is a literary revelation that intellectual reorientation is possible when one encounters a God with whom nothing is impossible. Tom Long, a major influential theological scholar who taught on the parables for over forty years, demonstrates that scholarship, ministry, and life are nonlinear but can be disrupted through the inbreaking of the kingdom of God from the parables. Long humbly admits his change in perspective on the parables after many years. He awakens to the fact that a parable is not solely a literary device but also a theological reality, a kingdom-of-God event that preachers should proclaim is 'at hand' yet not 'in' our hands. Parables are more than stories, metaphors, or ideas but are the power of the living God on earth as it is in heaven. Get this book into your hands to be reminded once again that the kingdom of God is at hand!" —Luke Powery, Dean of Duke University Chapel

"Be very afraid! While masquerading as a book about preaching and teaching the parables, in this splendid volume, the parables begin to do their work of unsettling, rearranging, and finally inviting. They preach themselves. Tom Long's extended conversation with Jesus' teaching has born fruit, thirty- and sixty- and a hundredfold. I, for one, am grateful." —Beverly Roberts Gaventa, Helen H. P. Manson Professor Emerita of New Testament Literature and Exegesis, Princeton Theological Seminary

"Every pastor has a favorite class from seminary or divinity school—a class that utterly changed their way of looking at the faith, a class that reaffirmed that ministry is a worthy calling, a delving into meaty and inspiring matters that merits every ounce of energy and creativity a person can possibly muster. For me, that class was Tom Long's class on the parables. This book is that class. It is one blessing after another, after another." —Scott Black Johnston, pastor of Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church

"Preacher, teacher, scholar, and disciple Tom Long offers readers a lifetime worth of fresh insights on parables we only thought we already knew well. Long provides a historical overview of biblical scholarship on parables, dives deep into the distinctiveness of each Gospel, and then explores the parables with energy, intelligence, imagination, and love. This book will be a helpful addition to preachers’ and teachers’ biblical reference library, but it is also worthy of being read devotionally. Either way, Long's words invite us to be surprised again by God's living Word." —Jill Duffield, author of Lent in Plain Sight

"In this volume, Tom Long does what trusted surf instructors do: show us how to ride the wave of a parable. He helps us glide along the unique contours of each one, feeling the structure, aims, surprises, and surprises-within-surprises. The jagged edges and pitfalls that tend to throw preachers off-balance are highlighted as well as many hidden gems. All the while Long keeps us focused on the Gospel writers' core themes, illumining them with his own unforgettable stories and illustrations. Ultimately, like a good parable, this book offers exhilarating glimpses of God's vision for humankind." —Donyelle C. McCray, Associate Professor of Homiletics, Yale Divinity School

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